A huge gamble on the Emmet Butterly-trained Brabazon gave leading pony circuit rider Freddie Mitchell his debut win on his very first run under rules, at Lingfield on Tuesday.
Mitchell, the son of former trainer Philip, had no booked rides on the card but was said to have travelled to the track in case the rider of Jakeys Girl, Christine Powell, failed to make the weight of 9st 10lb for trainer Pat Phelan, for whom Mitchell works.
In the event, Powell rode Jakeys Girl, posting 3lb overweight, while Mitchell took the ride on Brabazon after his jockey, Graham Watters, was said to have been held up by poor weather conditions and arrived five minutes too late to take the ride.
It was another twist in what had turned into an amazing gamble. Brabazon, trained by Butterly in County Donegal, opened at 50-1 with some bookmakersin the morning before being backed into a starting price of 11-4.
Mitchell made no mistake in steering home the gamble, looking well adapted to the senior game in securing a ten-length victory.
He said: “I got my licence in October and this is my first ride. I’ve got my first point-to-point ride on Sunday, too.”
Philip Mitchell added: “We came down as we said someone might not make it. Hopefully he’ll get a few more rides and get his numbers up.”