LANE ON TRACK FOR A BRIGHT FUTURE
SOUTH West jockey Damian Lane has been described as “the next big thing in Melbourne racing” by champion trainer Darren Weir.
Weir and Lane have a strong relationship and Lane will ride Australian Cup winner Humidor for Weir in Saturday’s $3m BMW Caulfield Cup (2400m) at Caulfield Racecourse.
The Forest Lodge head trainer said Lane would win Melbourne premierships and some of the biggest races on offer.
He is the number one ranked Victorian jockey this season.
Lane has ridden the five-year-old Humidor in every race since Weir began training the gelding, claiming wins in March’s $1.5m TAB Australian Cup (2000m) at Flemington and the $750,000 PFD Food Services Makybe Diva Stakes (1600m) back in September.
Humidor came back into work less than two weeks ago and finished more than seven lengths behind champion mare Winx in the $500,000 Seppelt Turnbull Stakes (2000m).
“Damian has put a lot of work into him,” Weir said.
“They click well. Damian knows him well.”
Weir said Humidor’s entire preparation was to get him ready for the Caulfield Cup where he was a serious contender.
“Apart from his last run – which I was still happy with – the horse is in great shape,” he said.
“It was not about the margin that he finished behind, it was about his antics. We are happy and I would not swap him from any other horse in the race.”
Weir said a solid run in the Caulfield Cup would set Humidor and Lane on the path to the $3m Group 1 Ladbrokes Cox Plate (2040m) and the 2017 $6.2m Emirates Melbourne Cup (3200m).
“He would have to run extremely well in the Caulfield Cup to push on from there,” he said.
“The Cox Plate is probably going to be unlikely (for a win), but I think the mile and a half at Caulfield and the two mile at Flemington will suit him down to the ground.”
Lane is coming off one of the most successful weekends of his career, riding Tosen Stardom to victory in the $500,000 United Petroleum Toorak Handicap (1600m) and taking Kementari to second in the $2m Ladbrokes Caulfield Guineas (1600m).
The 23-year-old has ridden eight Group 1 winners in his short career and Caulfield is one of his favourite tracks, winning 38 races from 284 starts at 13 per cent.
Lane is scheduled to have nine rides on Saturday, including four for Weir.