Annabel and Who Dares Wins.  Photo: Race Images

Annabel Adams: A generational love

21 April 2022

LOVERACING.NZ caught up with Annabel Adams, travelling foreman and trackwork rider for Valachi Racing to chat about her first introduction to the industry, current role and favourite racing memory to date.

How did you first get involved in the racing industry?

My family has owned and raced both thoroughbreds and standardbreds for generations. My grandfather was a harness trainer and great grandfather was the managing director of Addington Raceway.

In terms of thoroughbreds, some good family friends of ours introduced me to Tony and Lyn Prendergast when I was a young teenager and my passion really flourished from there.

What drew you to the industry?

The horses and the people have really nurtured my passion for the industry. The athletic ability and intelligence of the thoroughbred continues to impress me every day. They are the ultimate athletes and there’s nothing more exciting than knowing you’ve got a fast one on your hands. There’s also nothing quite like seeing excited and happy owners, jockeys, trainers, strappers, breeders and punters after a winning result. It’s amazing how racing brings people together.

Tell us a little about your current role.

I’m currently with Stephen Autridge and Kris Shailer at Valachi Racing. My current role is travelling foreman/trackwork rider. This includes riding work, general stable duties, liasing with the vet/farrier and attending race meetings all over the country with or on behalf of Stephen and Kris.

What do you enjoy most about your role?

It is very satisfying watching young stock grow and develop into fantastic athletes and most exciting when they get their nose over the line first. It’s also great to work in an industry that allows you to meet and connect with so many different people from all walks of life.

When it comes to raceday, do you have any pre-race rituals/ superstitions?

Yes! My pre- race superstition is that nothing can be worn that is brand new. Everything has had to be used at least once before wearing it on race day. Horse and strapper!

What is your favourite racing memory to date?

'Who Dares Wins' winning 2019 Canterbury Gold Cup a week after he won the Listed Easter Handicap. He’s a very special horse to the Prendergast family and has a fantastic group of owners.

Who Dares Wins passionate group of owners. Image: Race Images.

What advice would you give someone looking to enter the industry?

Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard. You’ll give yourself as much opportunity as possible in this industry if you show you're passionate about racing and horses and are prepared to work hard.

You might also like