First win for junior driver at Wyndham
Following in her family’s horseshoe steps, junior driver Ellie Barron is making her own success.
Racing had always been in her blood so perhaps that is why, less than a month since her first raceday drive, Barron, on her horse Somejoy, had her first win at Wyndham on Sunday.
At just her sixth attempt the 22-year-old junior driver said the win was ‘‘pretty special’’.
‘‘Somejoy was my first trials winner and now my first race winner. I’ve also driven her in three workouts this season and won them all.’’
With generations of her family involved in horse racing at all levels, including training and racing, it came as no surprise her passion was with the animals.
‘‘I just love the horses, which is the biggest part of it.’’
Barron is the daughter of Clark and Jackie and granddaughter of former prominent studmaster Owen Crooks and harness racing administrator and successful trainer Ron Barron.
Her dad Clark, who has driven 1000 winners, is also the Somejoy’s trainer and owner but Barron had been working with the horse for four years in the lead up to the event.
‘‘My instructions were I wasn’t allowed to go back, to give her a wee breather and bring her back in one piece,’’ she said.
‘‘About the top of the straight I thought I was home but then heard them coming, I just screamed at her and she tried.’’
She finished with a time of 1:55.6.
The win came early in her career. For some it can take 20 or even hundreds of races before some drivers get their first win, Barron said.
She gave credit to her horse for the success.
Her equine involvement began in the Makarewa Pony Club when she was 7 years old, and included being part of a team that won the South Island Club’s show jumping championship.
Since then she has had a busy schedule studying physiotherapy at Otago University for four years and graduating at the end of last year. ‘‘I work every morning at the stables and then part time, 20 hours a week, at Spots Med in Invercargill,’’ she said.
Earlier on Sunday, Barron also ran fourth on the trotter Mass Invasion, which is owned by her grandfather Owen Crooks, to add to the previous start fourth, and second the start before that, on the same horse.
Junior driver Ellie Barron, with her parents Jackie and Clark Barron after her first win at Wyndham on Sunday.