Nathan Turnbull drove his 500th winner at Parkes last week. Photo by Coffee Photography
THERE could not have been a more fitting setting for Bathurst reinsman, Nathan Turnbull to bring up his 500th career win as a reinsman last Friday night.
Turnbull brought up what was becoming an elusive milestone at Parkes, a track where he has racked up many wins.
He scored with Lucky Cruz, which is owned by his sister-in-law Jess and trained by his younger brother Josh.
Nathan has been driving since 1998 when he was just 17, but he did spend time away from the sport when things became quiet about 14 years ago due to the Equine Influenza outbreak.
“The only time I spent away from training and driving was when EI hit, and it was around the same time that our son Jett was born,” said Turnbull.
“It was a quiet time for us, so I went out into the workforce for a few years.
“Really, I have only been away from The Lagoon for about six months when I spent time working with Vic Frost in Queensland in the early 2000’s.
“But while that was enjoyable, here is where I always wanted to call home.”
Turnbull was born into harness racing royalty and could not have been in a better place to learn his craft.
“I was so lucky to have such wonderful role models in my grandfather and my dad.
“They were at the top of their game and gave me good guidance.
“Jack Butler was still a junior driver when I kicked off and he was flying at the time, which gave me healthy competition and inspired me to do better.
“About seven years ago the opportunity to return to the game came up and I jumped at it.
“But this time around I felt it was right to go out on my own and things have worked out well for me.
“I get a lot of support from a lot of good people, for which I am so grateful.
“My wife Carly and our children Jett and Lacey work so hard to help me and they love the sport as much as I do.
“Quite simply, I could not succeed without them.”
Tonight, at Bathurst, Nathan has six runners and while he would not go out on a limb and declare a winner, he believes that all his stable runners will be “competitive”.