KILMORE teenager Jordy Chibnall drove her first winner at Kilmore Trots on Sunday night.
Driving in only her fourth race and having her licence for just over a week, the 18-year-old took out the Jet Roofing Pace over 1690 metres with the former New South Wales pacer Always A Duchess ($4.50).
Trained at Kilmore by Chibnall’s brother-in-law Mitchell Frost, Always A Duchess was positioned behind the leader on the pegs until the home straight where Chibnall pulled the mare into the sprint lane to forge to the lead.
The Always A Virgin five-year-old mare came away to defeat Deft Touch ($10) by 2.1 metres with Alberio ($15.50) third.
Chibnall, daughter of Kilmore thoroughbred trainer Tony Chibnall, said when she was growing up she had always wanted to be a jockey.
“I shot up and become a bit tall – and besides I do love my food,” she said.
“I still help dad out, but I don’t ride trackwork anymore.
“We’re up each day at 4.30am and I enjoy lending a hand. Then I’m back later in the day helping at feed time.”
Chibnall said Sunday night’s win at her home track was so exciting.
“It didn’t sink in ‘til the next morning,” she said.
Chibnall cut her teeth in the harness game by competing in the pony trots, where she competed for five years and represented Victoria in the Mini Championships at Tamworth.
Chibnall said she had Kilmore trainer-driver Rita Burnett to thank for introducing her to the sport.
“She was so thrilled for me and it was fitting that she trained and drove a winner (Yoursnmine) later in the night,” she said.
“Mum and Dad have been a great help to me driving me around to all the pony trots races and I have to thank Kilmore trainer Robert Walters as he was a big help in getting my driver’s licence.”
Chibnall made her harness driving debut at Maryborough last week, finishing fifth with Always A Duchess, also trained by Frost.
She followed up two days later at Bendigo, finishing eighth on board the Walters-trained Lady Flora in the 1650-metre Schweppes Pace and seventh on Lisa Miles-trained Nota Replica in the 1650-metre Bendigo Party Hire Pace.
Chibnall said her first races were a bit different to her experience in trials.
“It was very nerve-wracking but very exciting at the same time. I sat in the breeze and didn’t get a very good run going up to the gate so it was a bit tough in my first race but it was a good experience and I had a lot of fun,” she said.
“[Lady Flora] is a bit of a handful to drive so it was a good effort to actually get around.
“I had another drive for Lisa Miles on my favourite horse so that was a bit of a thrill.
“To actually get to the races is a big achievement in itself so I’m quietly proud of myself for getting as far as i have in the sport in such a short time because my background is in the gallops.”
Chibnall not only works with Frost but also drives half an hour to assist Bolinda trainer Lisa Miles with her pacers.
“I probably don’t get much sleep. But I’m not complaining because I love every minute of it,” she said.