South Australia is set to welcome another new international apprentice to its ranks with the New Zealand born Kate Cowan set to make her debut at Balaklava on Wednesday.
The 25 year-old Cowan is a second year apprentice and is currently in SA on a three month loan with Wayne Francis & Glen Kent at Finniss Lodge. She is the daughter of former New Zealand jumps jockey and now trainer Alex Cowan who is also her master back home.
A career in the saddle only came about around four years ago when Cowan watched Michelle Payne win the 2015 Melbourne Cup. Before that moment a career as a teacher was what Cowan was set to pursue but that life changing moment inspired her to take after her father and follow a career in racing.
Fast forward four years and Cowan has started her career off strongly with 42 career wins to her name. This has included nine Metropolitan and 33 Provincial victories but the real career highlight was her Group 3 victory! Cowan claimed the 2017 Group 3 Winter Cup at Riccarton Park aboard the Adrian & Harry Bull trained Nashville only six months into her career.
This season Cowan’s ridden 18 winners from 129 starts back home and now comes to Australia ready to make her mark with a Strathalbyn debut, riding three horses for her new bosses Wayne Francis & Glen Kent.
Her first South Australian ride will be in Race 3 aboard Haneda, a two-year-old filly she partnered in a Gawler trial late last month. That trial featured the runner-up in Saturday’s Listed Queen Adelaide Stakes, Balaabel.
She then rides Holy Torment in Race 5 which is a three-year-old filly returning from a solid spell after contesting three races over spring. Her final ride of the day will be aboard another returning sprinter in Jackpot Johnny. The two combined for a trial win at Gawler and should give Cowan plenty of confidence in her chances of finding a winner in her South Australian debut.