Arthur Pollock out to continue strong start Quambone

Arthur Pollock, pictured here on the Nikki Pollock-trained Fill A Promise, will look to continue his good form at Quambone on Saturday. Image: Racing Photography.

Amateur jockey Arthur Pollock has taken the NSW picnic racing ranks by storm.

The 19-year-old made an immediate impression at Moree in May, winning the Boolooroo Moree Picnic Cup aboard the Peter Sinclair-trained Peak Road. 

He then scored doubles at Mallawa and Mudgee in June before registering his sixth career victory at Talmoi on Saturday.

Riding for his mother and Scone-based trainer, Nikki Pollock, it was his third win for the family as Never Never Land won the 1200m Class One Trophy Handicap.

“I’ve been pretty lucky and have been able to get on some nice horses for Peter Sinclair, Connie Greig, and obviously my Mum,” Pollock told NSW Country and Picnic Racing.

Son to Ben and Nikki Pollock, Arthur was born in England and has been around racing his entire life. 

Ben was a talented amateur Jumps jockey who won races at the prestigious Cheltenham festival before focusing on training with Nikki. 

After emigrating to Australia, Ben and Nikki established Racing Management Services while Nikki still trains her team out of Scone. 

“We moved out here when I was five, and we were in South Australia until four years ago, and then we moved up to Scone,” Pollock said.

“Dad was a jumps jockey, and Mum has always worked in racing; I’ve ridden trackwork since I was 14.”

When asked why he had turned his attention to picnic racing, Pollock explained it was good timing for his mother’s stable.

“We had some horses that were struggling at the professionals, and we thought we might as well give them a go at the picnics, and I thought I would give it a crack,” Pollock said. 

“It’s been good; Some of them (the racecourses) have been eye-openers, and to be fair, they have been presented in quite good order, and they are very even tracks to ride on, with everything getting their chance.”

When asked about his immediate success, including six career wins and an impressive 33% win rate, Pollock was just thrilled to be riding winners for trainers willing to back the young approved rider.  

“It was certainly a good feeling to get my first winner out the way at Moree and to win the (Boolooroo) Cup for Peter Sinclair,” Pollock said.

“There was obviously a big crowd, and it was great to get the job done for Pete, who trained the first four.

“Then for Mum, with my first two rides for her, I got them beat, and at Mudgee, it was good to finally get the job done.”

Arthur and Nikki Pollock will have four chances to team up at the Marthaguy Picnic Race Club meeting, held at Quambone on Saturday. 

On a big day for the stable, Gulf Of Gabes will run in the 1200m Class Three Trophy Handicap, Yarraville will go around in the 1400m Class One Trophy Handicap, Dynastic will be the top weight in the 1400m Marthaguy Picnic Cup, and Harmonica Miss will take on the 800m Class Three Trophy Handicap. 

“Yarraville should go well; she has only had the four runs for Mum,” Pollock said. 

“Her first three runs were good, and we thought she would win at Taree, but it was a shifty track, and she didn’t let down, but if she bounces back, she’ll be very hard to beat. The big concern will be whether she handles the dirt.”

Pollock will continue to follow his Mum to the races, and further down the track, he may look to expand his horizons. 

“For now, I’ve only got four wins left of my claim, and I’ll mainly stick to where Mum’s horses are going,” Pollock said. 

“Once that’s gone, the option is there to travel a bit more and give it a proper crack, but we’ll see what happens.”

In terms of riding as a career, Pollock shut down that idea.

“Training is where I want to end up,” Pollock said. 

“I wanted to have a go at the professionals, but I was too heavy, and with training, it’s all Mum at the moment, and one day, I’d like to transition into training.” 

For now, Pollock will focus on the Marthaguy meeting, which has been very well-supported by trainers.