Apprentice Tahlia Hope has landed her first metropolitan winner, guiding Invincible Al to victory at Pakenham.
The 18-year-old was having just her second ride at a metropolitan class meeting on Saturday.
Riding the Patrick Payne-trained $12 chance, Invincible Al scored by 1-1/4 lengths from the $1.60 favourite Wise Hero with Segovia ($19) a half-length away third.
Invincible Al recorded a time of 57.01 seconds lowering the 1000m track record by 0.29 seconds.
Hope celebrated her first metropolitan win with a cheese toastie as she headed to the carpark and a three-hour drive to Benalla for rides in the final two races at the country meeting.
Her victory on Invincible Al was her 35th career win. She is indentured to the family training team of her grandfather Lee and father Shannon, who have deliberately kept her to provincial racing until now.
“I had a ride at Sandown just before the spring carnival and my family decided to wait until after the spring to get going,” Hope said.
“Today we thought we were a longshot to have a go at a Saturday meeting but Patrick’s got him in good order and he’ll be going forward from here I would say.”
Hope said it was a big thrill to land the victory as Payne had been instrumental in getting her to town.
“He’s been trying to get me into town for a while to try and get my career going,” Hope said.
“Luckily it’s paid off for him. He’s pushed me and I’ve got my first city winner for him.”