Victorian jockey Luke Currie is tending to ‘fly under the radar’ as an integral part of the successful McEvoy Mitchell Racing operation.
Currie, 37, is the stable rider for trainer Tony McEvoy in Victoria and has quietly built an impressive record letting his winners do the talking.
Saturday’s racing at Caulfield gave an indication of Currie’s professionalism and his willingness to do what it takes to be part of the winning McEvoy Mitchell team.
Currie got his weight down to 53kg, his lightest for three years, to ride Dollar For Dollar at the right weight in the Group One Sir Rupert Clarke Stakes (1400m) and the effort nearly returned a major dividend.
Dollar For Dollar crossed from a wide gate of 13 and led until basically the last stride when grabbed by Jungle Cat.
McEvoy paid tribute to Currie.
“His professionalism and hard work ethic are reasons why I love having Luke as part of the McEvoy Mitchell team,” McEvoy said.
“The fact he wanted to get his weight down to 53kg with no fuss is indicative of his nature, and from a better draw, we might have got the win.
“His fitness is impeccable, his feedback after rides is brilliant, and he makes minimal errors in races.
“I am really surprised other owners and trainers don’t use him more often in the feature races when I don’t have a runner.
“I believe Luke is coming into the best five years of his riding career and I’m looking forward to continuing a winning association.”
Currie agreed he prefers to let his riding do the talking.
“A few of the other jockeys feature more prominently in the media but that is not me,” Currie said.
“I’m happy to work hard and hopefully ride winners.”
Currie rode successfully in Melbourne for David Hall before he left to train in Hong Kong, and Robert Smerdon before getting the bug to ride overseas.
He had success in Mauritius before returning to Victoria but had a fall which sidelined him in 2015.
“Timing is everything,” Currie said.
“I was on the comeback, but with limited enthusiasm, when my manager contacted Tony about riding Don’t Doubt Mamma at Moonee Valley. She was given little chance by most people, but I got the ride and she flashed home to finish fourth.
“Tony kept me aboard and we went to Caulfield a fortnight later and she won the MRC Foundation Plate, and that was the start of our association and I decided it was time to really have a crack at establishing myself.
“Riding for McEvoy Mitchell has been brilliant, and the stable is getting stronger each season.”
Currie has successfully teamed with Hey Doc for two Group One wins – the Australian Guineas and Manikato Stakes and partnered Sunlight to win the Magic Millions.
Don’t be misled by Currie’s quiet nature, he is a key part of the success of McEvoy Mitchell Racing.