English-Kiwi jockey Anna Jones is set to realise a dream in the early
hours of tomorrow morning when she dons silks for her first raceday
ride in her homeland.
Jones, the winner of 90 races over the past three years as an
apprentice with Matamata trainer Karen Fursdon, takes the mount on
two-year-old first starter Spinnaker Bay, scheduled to run in the second
race at Newbury at 1.30 New Zealand time on Saturday morning.
After growing up near England’s historic Newmarket racing centre,
Jones found her way to New Zealand, initially to work in the yearling
yard at Kevin Hickman’s Valachi Downs. She grabbed the chance to sign on
with Fursdon and within months had opened her account, appropriately on
the Hickman-owned Sir Elmo at Te Teko in June, 2013.
As the owner of Spinnaker Bay, Hickman is again the common
denominator. Mixing a month’s holiday with family and friends, Jones had
hopes to take a raceday ride or two during her sojourn and is now set
to line up against the likes of champion jockeys Ryan Moore and Frankie
Spinnaker Bay is rated a 14-to-one chance by bookmakers, but no
matter where Jones finishes on the William Jarvis-trained filly, she
will cherish the landmark moment forever.