Eagle Farm: Jaden Lloyd eyes apprentice title next season after saluting on Alpine Edge

Boom apprentice Kyle Wilson-Taylor is all the rage heading into the new season but son of a gun Jaden Lloyd says he has what it takes to win next season’s champion apprentice title after grabbing his third Saturday metropolitan winner at Eagle Farm.

Lloyd delivered one of the rides of the day to win aboard the highly rated Alpine Edge in the QTIS two-year-old handicap, marking the biggest win of his career to date.

Son of champion hoop Jeff, Lloyd was cool, calm and collected when he held his inside line while others searched for superior ground out wide on the tricky Eagle Farm surface.

“They think at Eagle Farm you need to come out wider but I don’t think there’s much difference to be honest so I rode him in clear air and let him do the rest,” he said.

“He would be one of the best horses in Queensland. He is such a dude, he does everything right and has the best temperament.

“Just to get on a horse of his caliber was pretty exciting. He ran second in the Magic Millions and only beaten a few lengths by Anamoe and Profiteer who are some of the best young horses in the country.

“His class shone through today, he took a little while to wind up but once he did he put them away pretty easy.”

Favourite gets the job done in race 4 from Eagle Farm as Alpine Edge salutes for @EdmondsRacing 👏 pic.twitter.com/wEK0tqj3wM

With a strong class of apprentices coming through in Queensland, Lloyd has a simple goal going into the new season where he said he will be riding in town at every opportunity.

“Me and Kyle are probably the main two going for the champion apprentice title next year,” Lloyd said.

“He will be hard to beat, I reckon he is a good rider but I think I can beat him and I am pretty sure if I stay out of trouble, I will.

“I would love to be champion apprentice but really it is about riding as many winners as I can, I need to stop getting suspended for that to happen – they are the goals.”

Jaden Lloyd returns to scale after winning on Alpine Edge. Picture: Trackside PhotographySource:The Courier-Mail

With Robbie Fradd originally slated to ride the Magic Millions runner-up, Lloyd got the call up when handicappers allotted the Toby and Trent Edmonds-trained juvenile 63kg.

Alpine Edge is set for bigger and better things and Lloyd said he was rapt just to play a part in his return to racing after not being sighted since his last-place finish in the Group 2 Todman in March.

“Robbie was meant to ride it and my dad does his rides as well,” he said.

“Once he got 63kg they thought it was too much weight to carry and not claim, especially first-up.

“I obviously got the call up and I was pretty excited.”

Leah delivers on Emerald Kingdom

If jockey Leah Kilner was looking to put her name up in lights to impress her potential new boss, she delivered in spades on Saturday aboard Group 3 winner Emerald Kingdom.

Kilner is on a short trial with Brisbane trainer Rob Heathcote as she looks to make her move into town permeant and delivered a smart frontrunning ride in the Open Handicap to hold off a fast-finishing Scallopini.

With his last start in the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap in June, Emerald Kingdom had class on his side and Kilner was excited to get a feel of the gelding.

“He is an absolute machine, when he walked into the yard you could have put your house on him – he looked amazing,” she said.

“It’s definitely a good way to get things going (with Heathcote)

“Mr Heathcote said to me ‘sit on him as quiet as a church mouse until the 300m and then press the button’.

“That’s what we did and it was the best run ever, thank you to Robbie Fradd as well who gave me some pointers on this horse.”

A smiling Leah Kilner after winning aboard Emerald Kingdom. Picture: Trackside PhotographySource:The Courier-Mail

It was a case of going full circle for Kilner who remembers getting knocked off by Emerald Kingdom in January 2020.

“I remember him when he was having his second or third start and I was riding against him in a midweek which was one of my first race rides in here, I thought I could win the race and he gave me an absolute cold,” she laughed.

“I have watched him with great interest since then and to finally get on him is great, I can’t thank Mr Heathcote enough to have faith in me.”

It capped off a double for Kilner who also booted home Rock Amore for trainer Tony Gollan earlier in the card to make it three wins from her last seven races at headquarters.

Originally published asJaden talks up apprentice battle after city win

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