Racing: Cox keen to add to fine season

Jonny Cox
Jonny Cox
Jonny Cox has had a season to remember, but he might not be finished just yet.

Cox has six drives at Forbury Park tonight, including two of his own horses, Shards Of Myross and Mackenzie Jacob, as he looks to add to his driving tally of 51 wins and 16 as a trainer.

While the 51 wins in the sulky have pleased Cox, his training wins came as more of a surprise.

''When I started out training, I didn't have a target. I only had three or four horses,'' Cox said.

''Over the season, it's slowly picked up. I've got nine in work at the moment and probably 15 on the books coming and going.

''You have a bit of success and luckily it brings more horses into the stable.''

Cox hopes a barrier draw of one will help It's Only Me (race 3), although after her bold third from barrier 16 two weeks ago, he is not so sure the barrier draw is vital to the Art Major filly's chances.

''She drew one the second line behind Chal Fire one week and she went awful, and she's gone better off bad draws.

''But she's got some gate speed, so hopefully we can trail the right one.

It's Only Me is one of two drives Cox has for Graeme Anderson and Amber Hoffman, and he is set to go in to a training partnership with Hoffman next year. Under The Monarch (race 1) is the other Anderson-Hoffman runner, and Cox hopes the Monarchy mare's manners will return tonight after an uncharacteristic break on July 5 following a false start.

Chers Bettor Babe is a threat to the winning chances of It's Only Me in a 3yr-old and older 1-win...
Chers Bettor Babe is a threat to the winning chances of It's Only Me in a 3yr-old and older 1-win mobile pace over 2200m at Forbury Park tonight. Photo by Matt Smith.
''She stepped away the first time, but [at the second start] there was an old fella standing on the outside of the fence and she shied at him.

''But she had a gallop after that anyway, so she wasn't happy on the night. She's drawn in a wee bit so hopefully she'll concentrate a wee bit more.''

Shards Of Myross (race 2) is a recent addition to Cox's team, having arrived at the Westwood Beach stables in mid-April and Cox warns punters the filly will strip fitter after tonight's efforts.

''She's just there for a run, really, and if she's running on, we'll be happy.''

Mackenzie Jacob (race 8) is another recent arrival, but his stay may be short if he produces anything like his sixth at Forbury Park a fortnight ago.

''I wasn't expecting big things, but I thought he'd go better than that,'' Cox said.

''If he doesn't step up, he might be gone, but he's definitely got the ability there.''

He hopes a change in the 5-yr-old gelding's training regime could do the trick along with the addition of blinds.

''Amber's been riding him since his last start. He hasn't been anywhere near a cart or behind a lead or anything.''

Fiery Rascal (race 7) is well drawn to capitalise on a hot speed in the claimers' mobile pace, while Cox joins the procession of drivers trying to get to the bottom of Mum Beat Lyall (race 5) for Mosgiel trainer Martin Denton.

''If she puts it together, she's one that can foot it with them, but it depends which Mum Beat Lyall turns up on the night.

''You just put the reins on the dust sheet and hopefully she trots around for you.''


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