Featherweight Thompson throws hat in ring for Ayrton ride

The jockey is attempting to land the ride on the red-hot Stradbroke favourite on the back of a Doomben treble on Saturday.

Jockey Ben Thompson is looking to use his red-hot form to put his name up in lights in an attempt to secure Group 1 rides over the winter carnival, including Stradbroke favourite Ayrton.

The featherweight rider has been a revelation since making the move to Queensland to be with partner Stephanie Thornton and has the seat on Rob Heathcote’s gun two-year-old Prince Of Boom going forward, but he is looking to launch to another level on the back of a Doomben treble on Saturday.

Less than nine months in to his career in Queensland, Thompson has 40 metro winners to his name, but he admits there was a time when he didn’t know what the move would do for his career.

“Being ambitious, you want to see yourself as a regular metro rider up here but having never ridden for anyone up here it was a big move,” he said.

“I knew there was a risk making the move but I thought by putting my head down and working hard, it would all come together.

“Things were going well in Victoria, I had ridden in Singapore and I was only back about eight months before making the move north.

“I wasn’t entirely happy and I knew I would be happier being up here with Stephanie so I was ready for the challenge to start from scratch.”

With Ayrton allotted 49.5 kgs in the Stradbroke should he win the Fred Best Classic next week to gain entry, Jamie Kah has confirmed she would be unable to ride the boom three-year-old.

After riding Good Idea at 50 kgs in the Group 1 Sydney Cup last month, Thompson knows he is able to get down to the weight, should he get the call up from Mick Price and Michael Kent Jnr.

“I don’t have a Stradbroke ride as yet but I am in talks with a few parties so I am hoping to pick something up closer to the date,” he said.

“Speaking to Mick Price, I am really hopeful to get the ride on Ayrton if he can make the field, he will only have 49.5 kgs and I can ride that no issues at all.

“It (lightweight) is my best asset in those handicaps, I rode 50 kgs in the Sydney Cup four weeks ago, I am lucky weight is on my side.

“He is coming up this week and he staying with Stephen O’Dea where I ride the bulk of my trackwork so hopefully I can sit on him.”

Without a Doomben Cup ride on Saturday, Thompson is booked to ride Wonderful Riri in the Group 3 BRC Sprint (1350m) along with unbeaten two-year-old Fetch in the Carter Stakes and The Astrologist in the Chief De Beers.

“He ran Magic Millions day and was only beaten a length-and-a-half to Eleven Eleven and is a winner at stakes level in Victoria so hopefully he can kick off his campaign well,” Thompson said of The Astrologist.

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