Sport

Apprentice Romario Spencer thanks his 'baby mother' for first victory

BY HURBUN WILLIAMS
Observer writer

Friday, January 11, 2019

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ANOTHER winning rider has been produced from the jockey-producing enclave of Gregory Park which is located at the back door of the race track at Caymanas Park.

Apprentice Romario Spencer, opened his account in brilliant style aboard the Ian Parsard-trained Dragline on Saturday last, January 5, 2019.

His performance, especially in the closing moments of the race when he clung to inside rails, demonstrated his courage and his will to get the job done.

The smile of joy on Spencer's face when he returned to the winners' enclosure was something to behold.

Spencer said that he was happy to get off the mark, and while he profusely thanked the connections of Dragline for giving him the ride, even more praise was reserved for the mother of his child.

“My baby mother is the one who is motivating me a lot by urging me not to give up. The first race I rode in, which was an apprentice race, I can second as my irons got busted. I also lost a race on New Year's Day and she was inspiring me again after the race saying to me, 'no matter what never give up, never stop riding until you past the winning post in front'.

“After today's (Saturday) victory I am overwhelmed. It is the first one and it gives a special joy but I am not head over heels.

“I am staying focused and continuing to do the hard work as this is only a primer to work with greater purpose towards further victories,” Spencer outlined. Spencer then shared how he got involved into horse racing.

“I am so pleased with this my first win as a claiming apprentice that I have to retrace how it all began and how I got involved with horse racing.

“I was around 13 years-old and I always saw horses walking around in my community. One day, I saw a horse walking around alone in the scheme where I lived. Fascinated by seeing this horse walking around with no owner, my friends and I decided to catch, bathe and feed him.

“After doing all of that, we all agreed to take a ride on this horse, but I was the one who was willing to climb up and take that ride. I started to ride this horse in open land and after a while, I began to feel the ride and, much to my enjoyment did not want to come off. This was until the horse started to gallop with me during which time, I told myself that I am not going to drop off.

“I did not drop off and the fear I first had soon went away. I told my father that I like the sport and he replied, 'talk to your godfather'. My godfather, Junior Winter, then said to me, anything else you are doing leave it and come to Caymanas Park which I did immediately.

“During those early years at the track because of the love I have for horses, I wanted to sleep at the track as I did not want to go home.

“Jockey Jevanne Erwin was one of the main people who, more than anyone else, encouraged me to come to the track but warned that I should never come with good clothes in the mornings,” Spencer confided.

Peter-John Parsard, assistant trainer to Ian was effusive in his praise of the young rider pointing out how bold, brave and well-timed the ride from Spencer was: “He was our apprentice coming up and he worked extremely hard during his preparation. For sure he deserves more chances than he has been getting and I think that he has done very well on the rides he has received thus far. He just did not get the opportunity to ride a horse that has had a real chance to win and hopefully the ride and victory today (Saturday) will not just show other trainers, but other owners that he is worthy of their support as he has a very good chance of developing into a very capable jockey – especially a skilful one”.

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