Racing Victoria (RV) has today announced the conditions for the inaugural Best Bets Star of the Saddle to be conducted throughout the 2019 Victorian Spring Racing Carnival.
The Star of the Saddle seeks to reward those jockeys who support the Victorian Spring Racing Carnival by recognising the best and fairest rider across premier racedays at Flemington, Caulfield and The Valley throughout October and November.
The following cash prizes will be provided to the best and fairest jockey crowned the Star of the Saddle at each of the following race meetings:
- $50,000 – TAB Turnbull Stakes Day (Flemington, 5 October)
- $50,000 - Ladbrokes Caulfield Guineas Day (Caulfield, 12 October)
- $100,000 - Stella Artois Caulfield Cup Day (Caulfield, 19 October)
- $100,000 - Ladbrokes Cox Plate Carnival (The Valley, 25-26 October)
- $100,000 - AAMI Victoria Derby Day (Flemington, 2 November)
The winner of the final Star of the Saddle on AAMI Victoria Derby Day will also secure a set of four race saddles from Peter Horobin Saddlery valued at more than $3000.
All riders competing at the race meetings will be eligible for the Star of the Saddle, including apprentices and those visiting Victoria from interstate or overseas.
Points will be allocated on all races across the race meeting to the first three placegetters on a 3-2-1 points basis consistent with the current scoring system for the TAB Jockey Challenge.
In the event of a dead heat, the points will be split as follows:
- Dead heat for first – first 2.5 points each, third 1 point;
- Dead heat for second – first 3 points, second 1.5 points each; and
- Dead heat for third – first 3 points, second 2 points, third 0.5 points each
The highest points scorer at each meeting will be crowned the Star of the Saddle and win the cash prize provided that they have not been suspended during the course of the race meeting for breaches of Australian Rules of Racing 131 (Riding Offences) and/or 132 (Whip Use).
If the highest points scorer is suspended for breaching AR 131 and/or 132 during the race meeting, then the prize will be awarded to the second highest points scorer and so on until such time as the best and fairest jockey is determined.
In the case of a tie the cash prize will be shared equally by those eligible riders on the highest number of points and a countback will not be conducted.
The Ladbrokes Cox Plate Carnival prize will incorporate the Brent Thomson Award and be awarded to the highest eligible points scorer over the 18 races of the Cox Plate Carnival incorporating Manikato Stakes Night (Friday, 25 October) and Cox Plate Day (Saturday, 26 October).
RV Executive General Manager – Racing, Greg Carpenter said: “We’re excited to launch the Best Bets Star of the Saddle and look forward to crowning the best and fairest jockey at our feature meetings over the next five weekends.
“The Spring Racing Carnival not only showcases our very best horses, but the outstanding local and visiting riders who showcase their skills under the watchful eye of racing fans from across the globe.”