Nothing ventured, nothing gained. The experience was priceless.
That’s the mindset of apprentice jockey Madi Derrick who is staying positive and focused back home following a three-year-stint riding in the eastern states.
Derrick rode in New South Wales and although she copped an injury setback and faced intense riding competition, regret going over never entered her thoughts.
From a non-racing background, Derrick embraced the challenge whole heartedly and says the education and experience gained has improved her riding.
In a perfect world, Derrick was prepared to extend her tenure in New South Wales, but she lost momentum with her ankle injury keeping her on the sidelines for nearly a year.
Resetting new goals to outride her apprentice claim by the end of the 2023-24 racing season, Derrick said she’s determined to work hard and hit the ground running when resuming.
“I enjoyed my time in Sydney, but glad to be back as well,” Derrick told The Races WA.
“I got my apprenticeship extended by 12-months after an accident over a year ago.
“I had an ankle operation and spent 11-months on the sidelines.
“I think there are more opportunities to outride my claim in Perth.
“Obviously Sydney is very competitive and I just didn’t break into Sydney as much as I would have liked.
“I was going quite well before my ankle, but that long stint off made it difficult to get the support again afterwards.
“I don’t think it was an unsuccessful trip at all, it was a successful trip, just a few circumstances didn’t go my way.
“I’m really hungry to ride some winners and I’m hoping to get some support from bigger trainers that could put me on.”
One trainer quick to renew their association with Derrick was leading Great Southern horseman, Roy Rogers.
“I’m really looking forward to riding some winners for Roy,” Derrick said.
“He put me on alot last time I was here, I actually rode my last winner in WA for Roy.
“I will be apprenticed to Roy, who has set up a satellite stable at Ascot, allowing me to work from there.
“For the rest of the time I can get to freelance around for other trainers.
“I’m ready to rock and roll and dig in and make a real go of it.”
Derrick labelled riding in New South Wales as an incredible learning opportunity.
“I felt like I learnt heaps in New South Wales,” Derrick said.
“Finding a position after the barriers was something I had to improve on.
“My style has changed a lot, I feel more balanced on the horse and I’m stronger on them as well.”
Derrick has reached 127 career wins after steering home Quick Onyx at Scone last month.
Her first win came aboard Angry Annie for trainer Tiarnna Robertson at Geraldton in 2020.
Robertson was responsible in introducing Derrick to racing after an equestrian background.
Derrick has a 2kg metro claim and 1.5kg in the provincials.