Payne loses Penzance ride
Michelle Payne gained international recognition when riding Prince Of Penzance to a shock victory in the Emirates Melbourne Cup last year but she will not be in the plate for the gelding’s next run.
Michelle Payne: Lost key ride
Payne has been sidelined with a serious injury since May which caused her to miss last weekend’s Shergar Cup at Ascot but had recently returned to riding work.
Earlier this month Prince Of Penzance’s co-owner John Richards said the ride was hers from their point-of-view, but that the final decision rested with trainer Darren Weir.
However, on Wednesday Richards broke the news that Payne would not be on board when the seven-year-old returns at Caulfield at the end of this month, telling www.racing.com: “The horse will be running in the Memsie Stakes and she won’t be riding.
“That is the major reason, that she is not race fit and we have concerns over her wellbeing.”
Payne vented her frustration on Twitter before subsequently deleting the post.
“Not anymore I’m done, Why work your arse off for people who don’t appreciate what you do and write you off anyway #moretolife,” she posted.
Jockey Talia Rodder has led the call for more respect for female jockeys following the decision.
Rodder, speaking at the introduction of a new MRC Foundation-funded scholarship to support aspiring female track riders, said she was well aware of Payne’s emotion in the situation.
“I haven’t seen the tweet, but I know it [the feeling] from Michelle, and hands on every day, as a female rider, you have to constantly prove yourself,” Rodder said.
“She’s won how many Group 1s now? And she still has to prove it on a daily basis.
“I’m not saying the boys don’t, but at the same time, they get the leniency.
“Michelle (has) won 5 Group 1s now, including the Melbourne Cup … Nikita Beriman that won the Emirates Stakes in 2007 on Tears I Cry … none of them were in the market, all were 100-1. Why?
“Perspective, I suppose, and the fact it has been a male-dominated industry thus far.
“Hopefully with this little contribution [the scholarship], we can start change.”
Rodder said Payne has done nothing wrong to have the decision made for her regarding Prince Of Penzance, and if she wasn’t reunited with the champion for the Cup, it’d be a setback for women jockeys.
“It would disappoint me,” she added.
“Then again, every trainer and every owner is entitled to their opinions and beliefs. And we have to respect that.
“It’s more so she has to work twice as hard to make sure she keeps the ride, but with others, it’d be a given.”