Day At The Track

Three meetings, three winners

02:20 PM 18 Oct 2016 NZDT
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Dylan Ferguson and Carlos.png
Dylan Ferguson (Right) with dad Peter

There were only three North island harness meetings last week and 19-year-old Dylan Ferguson drove a winner at all three.

“It would have to be one of my most successful weeks of racing. I’ve driven a double before but never three in a week at three meetings.

“I’m rapt and really thankful to those owners and trainers who put me on their horses. I’m starting to get a few more outside drives now which is pleasing. All I want to do is keep racking up those wins,” said Ferguson who turns 20 on October 29.

Ferguson drove the Sean McCaffrey and Ross Paynter (Cambridge) trained Armabluechipboy to victory in the fourth race on the first day of the Manawatu meeting last Tuesday.

Then on the second day on Thursday he saluted the judge behind the Pat and Mike O’Brien (Blenheim) trained Tennyson Inlet in the first event.

Fast forward 24 hours to Alexandra Park and Ferguson was again back in the winner’s circle behind the Richard Brosnan (Ardmore) trained Torbjorn in race three.

Ferguson is now fifth on the national junior driving premiership with four wins – six behind pace-setter Rory McIlwrick. He is also the second top junior in the North Island – one behind Clevedon’s Sean Grayling.

“I really enjoy driving for Sean, Ross, Mike, Pat, and Richard. They have all been very supportive of me which is real encouraging because they all regularly put me on their horses.

“I had 271 drives last season and want to drive more and more. It’s all about winning and if I can do that then Championships and titles will look after themselves,” the Waikato reinsman said.

Ferguson said he was glad that he made the decision to return home from Amanda Turnbull Racing Stables in Australia last year.

“I loved it there. It was a great experience and I would like to go to Australia again one day but I knew there were more chances here with not many juniors in the North Island. I had also built up some contacts here and wanted more drives,” said Ferguson.

The ‘White Star Stable’ employee has been driving since 2013 and has recorded 38 winners from 711 starters, and also placed on 134 occasions. He has netted $353,301 in stakes and his life-time UDR strike rate currently sits at 0.1366.

Ferguson’s best season came in 2013-2014 when he reined home 13 winners.

“Last week’s feat was right up there with my first winning drive. I’ll never forget that. The Country Cups Final was also special,” he said.

Ferguson nailed his first career win at Cambridge on November 17, 2013 behind the Ken Webber trained Carlos.

Then the following year he drove the Pat and Mike O'Brien trained outsider, Beckingsale to win the $25,000 North Island Country Cups Final. Ferguson was 17 at the time.


Dylan winning the NI Country Cups Final with Beckingsale

“My partner Jo Stevens also trained The Scruff to win at Alexandra Park in July. I drove him that night. That was also a special moment in my career as well.

“Hopefully there are a lot more to come,” Ferguson said.

 

Duane Ranger

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