Mal­lyon blisses out af­ter first Syd­ney win

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - RACING - RAY THOMAS

AN­DREW Mal­lyon, grand­son of a rid­ing leg­end, pro­duced a bril­liant last-to-first ef­fort on Ex­treme Bliss to win at Royal Rand­wick yes­ter­day.

Ex­treme Bliss looked to be out of it com­ing to the turn but Mal­lyon rode for the luck and the mare fin­ished pow­er­fully to take out the 2019 Mem­ber­ship Hand­i­cap (1500m).

This was Mel­bourne-based Mal­lyon’s first Rand­wick win­ner but it didn’t come with­out drama as the jockey had to waste hard to ride the mare at 55.5kg.

“I’ve got a two and fouryear-old at home and I didn’t want them to have mem­o­ries of Dad be­ing grumpy over Christ­mas be­cause I was wast­ing,’’ Mal­lyon said. “This is the light­est I’ve rid­den in two months.’’

The rider’s grand­fa­ther is Mick Mal­lyon, the for­mer cham­pion jockey who won three Caulfield Cups in­clud­ing in 1971 on Gay Icarus. Mal­lyon would have been proud of his grand­son’s ride on Ex­treme Bliss ($11), who pow­ered through near the rails be­fore run­ning down early leader To­ryjoy ($3.40 favourite) to score nar­rowly by a half neck, with Bella Suc­cess ($8.50) two lengths away third.

Even though Ex­treme Bliss was in a pre­car­i­ous po­si­tion com­ing to the turn, Mal­lyon was con­fi­dent his mare could still be in the fin­ish.

“I was back in the field but they were rolling along up front,’’ he said. “From the turn I had to plot a course but when they straight­ened I knew she was go­ing to give me a good run.

“I de­cided to stay close to the rails as I didn’t want to set her too big a task so I bit the bul­let and rode for luck. We just needed to get a free pas­sage and when she got through she was strong to the line.’’

Mal­lyon’s ride earned praise from Hall of Fame jock- ey Dar­ren Bead­man. The heavy­weight jockey spoke of Bead­man be­ing in­terim trainer at Godol­phin for his first Mel­bourne win on Ril­lito at Sandown.

“Dar­ren was like a men­tor for me when I was work­ing for John O’Shea when he was with Godol­phin,’’ he said. “I would ring Dar­ren two or three times a week and go through my rides with him so when he be­came the trainer it was pretty spe­cial to win on Ril­lito for him.’’

An­drew Ad M Mal­lyon ll rates his win on Ex­treme Bliss.

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