Jessie Philpot ticks one off the bucket list

Jessie Philpot. File picture: GLENN DANIELS
Jessie Philpot. File picture: GLENN DANIELS

JESSIE Philpot's win aboard Gravity at Strathalbyn on Wednesday is one the Bendigo apprentice jockey will never forget.

Not only was it her first winner on South Australian soil (in her first ride), but for the well-travelled and still young jockey, it was the final one along the way to realising her dream of riding at least one winner in every Australian state or territory.

Philpot has achieved her goal by the age of 24.

The win for Hope Forest trainer Bill Bogarts added to a hectic and, at times, emotional year for Philpot, who is apprenticed to Bendigo trainer Mick Sell, and has bounced back strongly from a mid-year knee injury.

Three of her 'firsts' have been achieved this year - at Darwin on Delta D'or on March 16, at Kununurra in Western Australia aboard Sacambaya on September 7, and finally at Strathalbyn this week.

Philpot revealed the dream of riding a winner in every state and territory had not always been a goal of hers.

"It just happened to be that opportunities popped up and I kept going places - all of a sudden I realised I was close to riding a winner in every state," she said.

"Then I thought, 'I think I can do this', so I pushed on.

"I got an offer to ride at Kununurra, which I had never heard of before, but when it popped up I said 'you beauty', this is my chance."

There were just 18 days between Philpot ticking off her second last and last state winners.

Her pursuit of winners has taken Philpot to racetracks and towns she had never dreamed of going and helped her connect with plenty of amazing people along the way.

"It's been a lot of kilometres, travelling, plane flights and hard work," Philpot said.

"The best part about it is wherever I have gone, I have always had somewhere to stay - everyone has been really accommodating.

"That's been a great help."

Adding a touch of specialness and sentimentality to the milestone, Wednesday's win was in an apprentice's race named in honour of jockeys - Simone Montgomerie and Caitlin Forrest - who died in race falls in 2013 and 2014 respectively.

Philpot lost her own mother Donna - a former jockey - in a tragic trackwork accident at Bendigo in 2017.

Only days after her success at Kununurra, Philpot attended the funeral of fellow jockey Mikaela Claridge, who died after a trackwork fall at Cranbourne last month.

"It was a real honour to ride in that race," she said.

Philpot praised the support of Mick and Mel Sell for allowing her to pursue opportunities elsewhere across Australia.

"They are probably my biggest supporters, as well as dad (Gus)," she said.

"I also have a lot of Facebook followers, as well as family, who support what I do

"I also need to single out my manager Peter Meilak, he is always on the phone to people and has been a big supporter too."

Philpot has remained in a South Australia for a few days and will have five rides at Sunday's meeting at Naracoorte in the state's south-east.

How it was done

Queensland: Agent Blue at Gympie (April 11, 2015)

Victoria: Alangejack at Kerang (March 26, 2016)

Tasmania: Before All at Launceston (October 12, 2016)

ACT: Crusader General at Canberra (May 26, 2017)

New South Wales: Eve's Miss (Goulburn) March 15, 2018

Northern Territory: Delta D'or at Dartwin (March 16, 2019)

Western Australia: Sacambaya at Kununurra (September 7, 2019)

South Australia: Gravity at Strathalbyn (September 25, 2019)

This story Jessie Philpot ticks one off the bucket list first appeared on Bendigo Advertiser.