HE probably could have made it as a jockey.
Yet diminutive Castle Hill reinsman Jim Douglass is just as happy he has made a career in harness racing and heads to Menangle today with one of his best books of drives for months.
Douglass is the stable driver for Theresa Park trainer Ian Wilson and he will provide Douglass with three of his best chances with Kenny Said (Race 4), Bettor Be Lucky (Race 5) and Lani Kai Beach (Race 6).
And while all are rated good chances in the betting, Douglass will be hoping to steer them onto the track with a winning double already under his belt.
That’s because Menangle trainer Leon Jurd has booked him for two excellent chances in the opening two races.
The first of those is former Victorian square-gaiter Hotel Kyvalley, who has been installed a $3.50 second favourite behind Finn Runs Red ($1.90) in Race 1, a 1609m trotters’ mobile.
Jurd and former Club Menangle chairman Rex Horne bought Hotel Kyvalley from Victorian trainer Brent Lilley shortly after he scored his only career win to date, at Melton in April.
Yet the son of American stallion Father Patrick has shown plenty of gate speed in most of his starts and at just his fourth run at in Sydney, looks the likely leader and should be hard to run down.
Douglass has an even better chance, according to price assessors, when he drives another of Jurd and Horne’s purchases, Our Quick Cash, in Race 2.
In 17 starts for Jurd, Our Quick Cash ($3 favourite) has only managed one Penrith win although the gelding has been a great moneyspinner with 10 wins and 23 placings from his 90 starts and despite being drawn gate seven in the small field, should make his presence felt.
The best of Douglass’ three drives for Wilson looks to be Bettor Be Lucky, a $4.50 second favourite in Race 5.
Ironically, his biggest danger in that race is likely to come from yet another Leon Jurd and Rex Horne-owned runner in Blue Stone ($3.50), who has been knocking on the door in recent runs and will be partnered by Inter Dominion-winning reinsman Josh Gallagher.
Douglass final shot of the day could be fired by the Liz Heath-trained Aphrodite in Race 8.
This lightly-raced filly is chasing a hat-trick of Menangle wins and looks over the odds at $13 after drawing perfectly in gate one.