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First city ride for Irish apprentice Dolan

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Trainer Pat Webster (centre) hopes to give Irish apprentice Robbie Dolan his first Sydney winner.

Pat Webster has no qualms about Sovereign Eminence’s first metropolitan start coinciding with a landmark ride for Irish apprentice Robbie Dolan at Canterbury.

Rather than book an experienced rider to guide the Gerry Harvey-owned mare at Wednesday’s meeting, the Randwick trainer and Racing NSW jockeys’ mentor has ensured the Benchmark 70 Handicap (1200m) will be a memorable experience for the 21-year-old.

Webster first met Dolan in Melbourne in October when he took Happy Clapper south for the Cox Plate and then noticed a familiar face at Mark Newnham’s stable at Randwick.

“I met him at John Sadler’s stable and the next minute he’s up here 20 metres away,” Webster said.

“I know he’s worked very hard to get his visa all in place. He’s worked very hard so I wanted to give him a ride.

“That’s what it’s all about with these kids. They’re so excited to be riding in town.”

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Webster expects Sovereign Eminence to prove competitive when she makes the step up to city grade after two encouraging seconds at Kembla Grange and Wyong.

“She’s fought on really well and she’s fit. This looks a nice enough race for her,” he said.

“She’s drawn good and she’s got speed. She’ll ping from (barrier) two and probably lead.”

Sovereign Eminence is after her first win since her debut at Hawkesbury in December 2016 and Webster believes she is better equipped to achieve that goal.

“She was a little bit difficult when we first got her. She had a kangaroo loose in the top paddock but she’s quite good now,” Webster said.

“She threw her jockey in her first barrier trial, now she’s in a good place. She’s experienced now and she knows what to do.”

Sovereign Eminence was on the third line of betting at $6 with the TAB on Tuesday with the Ron Quinton-trained Duchess Pedrille the market leader at $2.60.

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