Pike booked for Albany return on Ladies Day

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Champion jockey William Pike is heading back to Albany.
Camera IconChampion jockey William Pike is heading back to Albany. Credit: Louise White

Champion WA jockey William Pike will be the star attraction at next Sunday’s Fitzpatrick Plate in Albany after confirming this week he will ride at the Ladies Day meeting.

Pike, a seven-time Group 1 winner and multiple WA jockeys premiership victor, is not a regular in the Great Southern but his attendance is a major coup for the Albany Racing Club on one of their biggest days.

Last season Pike rode in Mt Barker, finishing seventh in the Mungrup Stud Sprint, but his last visit to Albany came in April, 2017.

Back then he rode Falcon Crest and Spin Da Wheels in the two feature races on the card, the Albany Cup and Fitzpatrick Plate respectively, and they were his only two rides for the venture south.

William Pike (right) in his last ride in Albany on Falcon Crest, finishing second in the 2017 Albany Cup.
Camera IconWilliam Pike (right) in his last ride in Albany on Falcon Crest, finishing second in the 2017 Albany Cup. Credit: Laurie Benson

ARC manager Jack Young confirmed to the Albany Advertiser that Pike, through his manager Dale Verhagen, will partner Neurological in the $100,000 Fitzpatrick Plate (1230m).

Trained by Martin Allan, Neurological has won five of 12 career starts and Pike was aboard in his last Ascot victory over 1200m.

The Fitzpatrick Plate is a race that Pike has won previously, after partnering Shawaim for Albany trainer Gerry Hughes back in 2013.

ARC is hopeful Pike will take other rides at the meeting and he is likely to be in high demand for the other feature on the day, the $35,000 Albany Golden Bracelet.

Jockey Mitchell Pateman has confirmed he will take the mount on leading Fitzpatrick Plate contender Abdicator next Sunday.

Abdicator, prepared by Darren McAuliffe, will trial over 950m at Lark Hill on Monday with Pateman in the saddle and if everything goes well will start first-up in the sprint feature six days later.

William Pike aboard Abdicator at the Belmont trials.
Camera IconWilliam Pike aboard Abdicator at the Belmont trials. Credit: Michael Wilson

The winner of the listed Rangeview Stud Classic in Bunbury earlier this year, Abdicator will be one of the class runners among the Fitzpatrick nominations that will be released on Tuesday afternoon.

Last season’s winner Long Knife, talented sprinter Caipirinha and local galloper Run Liam Run are some of the other expected entries for the 2019 edition of the race.

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