Pike Breaks Riding Record

25
Jun

Premier jockey, William Pike, capped a record-breaking day with a treble at Belmont on Saturday.

Pike entered the meeting needing two winners to pass Paul Harvey’s state record of 116.5 winners in a Perth season.

Pike soared past the 1999-2000 benchmark when he booted home Socially Unique in the Fast Track To Membership 2016-17 Handicap (1400m).

In a signature Pike ride, he stuck to the fence before peeling to the outside and commencing his winning run at the top of the straight.

Military Ruler in race four and the impressive, State Solicitor, in the last, advanced Pike’s tally to 118 metropolitan victories.

With 10 city meetings remaining before the season winds up, Pike is storming to an eighth Perth jockey premiership.
He holds an unassailable lead over his next rival, Lucy Warwick, who boosted her tally to 56 after guiding home Cool Passion.

Pike’s stellar year also has him on top in the national riding list, well clear of Dean Yendall, James Orman and Brenton Avdulla.

It will be the first time Pike has been Australia’s leading jockey after being robbed of the title last year after sustaining a shoulder injury.

“It hasn’t sunk in as yet and I’m probably thinking how the heck am I going to do it again next year,” Pike said.

“I set a goal of 100 at the beginning of the year and to get that I was pretty happy.

“As I was coming through Paul Harvey was the man and he is still the man in my eyes.

“I just feel so good to be able to do something along the lines of what he has done.

“I have my beautiful family and kids behind me, but I have to do it again next year.”

Pike’s remarkable haul includes 16 black-type races including the Group One Kingston Town Classic (1800m) with Perfect Reflection.

Prominent jockey-manager, Dale Verhagen, who manages the riding interests of Pike and former record-holder, Harvey, said Pike’s achievement deserved acclaim.

“I think it proves Willie is up there with the best riders in the world,” Verhagen said.

“To break the record, win the statewide premiership and the national title is a remarkable achievement.”

Grant Williams, who prepares State Solicitor and his partner, Alana, Socially Unique’s trainer , along with leading owner, Bob Peters, have formed a strong combination with Pike over the past several years.

Williams said he was thrilled to be associated with Pike’s milestone.

“We have a great team and Willie is a great part of it,” Williams said.

“To see him achieve a record makes us very proud.”

RWWA: Julio Santarelli