Last Wednesday night was a memorable one for Parkes-based junior driver Blake Medlyn, and it wasn't because Elvis was in town.
Parkes Harness Racing Club hosted their annual Elvis Festival meeting last week with Medlyn notching up his first career win at only his fifth race drive, taking out the Parkes Furniture One Pace (1,660 metres).
The win came courtesy of four-year-old pacer Caribbean Jack, who is trained by Medlyn's father Kevin. The gelding has provided the young reinsman with all five of his career drives.
"When I crossed the line I couldn't believe I had actually won," the 18-year-old said.
Beginning from barrier two, the pre-race plan was to find the top and hope to stay there, and that's exactly how it panned out.
"The plan was to get to the lead and go from there," Medlyn said.
"I had a feeling before the race that we had a good chance."
With six wins next to his name entering the event, the $9.50 chance sprung straight to the front, where he ran along at sub-30 second quarters the entire journey, with race favourite Rock On unable to make up the ground.
Clocking in a personal best mile rate of 1:57:7, the Caribbean Blaster gelding was able to hold on to score by 1.1 metres over $41 shot Double Standards.
"It meant more getting my first winner for dad than what it would have if it was someone else I think," Medlyn said.
"It's a real bonding thing for us."
Medlyn became involved in the horses through his father, who has trained as a hobbyist for a number of years now.
"Dad was the reason I became involved in the horses, I grew up around them," he said.
When he's not training horses, Medlyn's father is an auto mechanic and owns Medlyn's Auto Service.
The young reinsman currently works casually for his father's business but hopes to gain a job in a bigger harness stable and focus more on the horses in the future.
"At the moment the plan is to try and get a job in a good stable," Medlyn said.
"I haven't really planned much other than that."
Medlyn has recently returned from spending a few weeks at the Doug Lee stable in Queensland and hasn't ruled out heading back up to the sunny state for work.
"I liked the racing up in Queensland and would consider looking for a job up there."
Medlyn is set to steer Caribbean Jack in race six at Bathurst's Oberon night this Friday.
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