Fresh and freewheeling jockey Robbie Fradd is relishing the idea that he won't have a stable to ride for in the new racing season. 'I had an up and down sort of season last time,' the tireless South African said yesterday. 'You can't really afford to commit yourself too much in Hong Kong racing. I did last year and it cost me dearly. This time I'll be moving around more.' While the records will show compatriot Douglas Whyte beat him into second place in the final wash-up of the riders' championship last season, Fradd stayed in touch until March and will be hoping he can turn out the winners more consistently this term. 'The way the handicapping system is, horses win their race and then the handicapper makes it tough for them,' Fradd said. 'Then you can be tied to a horse or a stable next time when you have a better offer and you can't afford to do that.' While Fradd was not a retained rider for Ivan Allan's yard, the then reigning champion did begin last term with at least one very good reason to stick close by the trainer - Fairy King Prawn. Hong Kong's champion became the catalyst for a roller-coaster ride through a season's highs and woes. Allan took exception to Fradd's waiting tactics on Fairy King Prawn in a nail-biting Hong Kong Mile second, an unplaced Hong Kong Gold Cup run and then the last-straw second to Jim And Tonic in the Dubai Duty Free. Three Group One defeats had soured the partnership and Allan declared Fradd would not ride for him again. Fradd took the decision as something that happens in racing and got on with riding, finishing the season with 62 winners. But the very public sacking had a decided impact on his season. Allan had provided Fradd with 108 of his 352 rides for the season to the point of their parting and the jockey's connections with other yards had been opportunistic and fleeting. 'I was doing okay, then I had the falling out with Ivan,' he said. 'It took a while to get going again and that flat spot was about the time that a few of Douglas' stables started winning and he got right away.' Without a star like Fairy King Prawn as a ready made anchor for his season, Fradd is hoping some promising young horses from last season will make the step forward and up this time. 'I rode some nice young horses last season, like Ocean Across and Dr More for Ricky Yiu, and Snippedydooda who has gone to the new trainer, Manfred Man Ka-leung - horses which I think will be all right,' Fradd said. He must also be considered one of the chances to partner Tony Millard's exciting young galloper, Lifeline Express, as Fradd was one of the three jockeys to have ridden the unbeaten champion griffin. 'Well, Felix Coetzee won a feature race on Lifeline Express so I think he's probably Felix's ride at this stage but you never know what happens,' Fradd said. Being a major player in Hong Kong racing is not an easy task at any time, but Fradd is yet another jockey who feels the 2001-2002 season will one of the toughest he has seen. 'I think the beginning of the season will be extremely competitive until it settles down and we know which jockeys are riding for which stables,' he said. 'I find every season in Hong Kong is different. Somebody rides a few winners early and everything changes. It would be nice to go bang and get a couple early.' With room in which to move this season, Fradd is keen to get the score on the board early and keep it there.