Beau De Lago brings home the goods
ONE of the highlights of racing at Pepperina Park, Clermont, last Saturday was the win of local jockey Bill Bell aboard Beau De Lago in the 1000m Open Handicap.
He returned to the saddle for the first time this racing season and landed a win, a second and a third from his three rides for the day. Bell who is a long-term Clermont resident is the only licensed jockey living on the Central Highlands and has had a lifetime of involvement in the sport of racing since commencing a riding apprenticeship with Noel Coyne in Emerald in the 1960s.
For many years he has held a dual jockey-trainer’s licence. His wife Jenny is also a licensed trainer. . Although it is difficult to locate records to determine the exact number of winners he has ridden during his career, suffice to say it is unlikely anyone has ridden more winners at Clermont or Twin Hills than Bill Bell. Now having obtained full-time employment in the coal mining industry it is probably fair to say that he is in the twilight of what has been an illustrious riding career but I would be surprised if he doesn’t feature prominently again at Twin Hills come late-September.
THE win of Beau De Lago would have surprised many as he was up against his more-fancied stablemate Regal Mountain who was last year’s Capricornia Racing Association Horse of the Year with five wins. It is hard to see Regal Mountain being beaten for this year’s award as to date he has clocked up seven wins on tracks within the Capricornia Racing Association and been a wonderful “money spinner” for his owners and trainer Brian Challacombe. He has proven almost unbeatable on the sand at Gladstone recording seven wins from eight starts.