Perfect start for brand new training duo

5 August 2023 Written by VRC

New training partnership of Pat Carey and Harris Walker delivers Flemington winner just days into new arrangement.

As a four-time winning trainer at the highest level, Pat Carey is no stranger to top line success but a midwinter Benchmark 84 event at Flemington has delivered a special moment for the experienced horseman and his new training partner Harris Walker.

Starlight Scope ($13), ridden by Jye McNeil, was game to hold off the challenge of Beour Bay ($6.50) to win by a short-half-head margin in the VRC Jennifer Lefebvre Trophy (1410m) to give Carey his 511th career winner and Walker his very first as a registered trainer.

"I've been in racing for a while and somehow came across Pat unintentionally," Walker said.

"We came up with this plan to go into a partnership together and ten months down the track here we are with a winner at Flemington. I can't believe it, to be honest."

After winning a midweek fillies and mares benchmark 70 event at Sandown on a month earlier, the six-year-old mare took on a harder task in the Group 3 Bletchingly Stakes (1200m) finishing ninth behind Ingratiating.

Though not at Flemington to share the moment with his counterpart, Carey was not only pleased that the mare was able to bounce back and win, but also with Walker being able to notch a winner so soon.

"Anyone who knows how this has come about knows that this is very much a mentoring situation,"  Carey said.

"It is getting harder for younger trainers to break in with so many challenges – including the financial ones – to start with momentum and I know it has worked for others and we can make this work this way."

"The partnerships are the way to go and I'm happy for him."