Hugh Bowman

James Hugh Bowman is an Australian thoroughbred racing jockey. Based in Sydney,[1] Bowman has won the New South Wales Metropolitan Jockey Premiership four times (2008/09, 2011/12, 2014/15, 2016/17)[2] and has ridden 99 Group 1 winners.[3][4] He was the jockey for Australian champion mare Winx from 2014 through to her retirement in 2019. In 2017, Bowman won the Longines World’s Best Jockey award presented by the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities.[5] The award capped off a year in which he added to his domestic success with international Group 1 wins in Hong Kong and Japan. In 2019, he was inducted into the Australian Racing Hall of Fame, the industry’s highest accolade.[6] Bowman is also renowned for his “She’s Apples” winning salute.[7]

Hugh Bowman
Hugh-Bowman Japan-Cup 2017.jpg
Bowman's trademark "She's Apples" celebration after winning the 2017 Japan Cup aboard Cheval Grand
OccupationJockey
Born14 July 1980
Dunedoo, New South Wales, Australia
Major racing wins
Doomben Cup (2004)
Cox Plate (2015, 2016, 2017, 2018)
Queensland Oaks (2005, 2015)
Epsom Handicap (2015, 2018)
Chipping Norton Stakes (2011, 2012, 2013, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019)
Doncaster Mile (2016)
George Ryder Stakes (2005, 2010, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019)
George Main Stakes (2012, 2016, 2017, 2018)
Australian Oaks (ATC) (2009, 2012, 2016, 2017, 2018)
Hong Kong Derby (2016, 2019)
Queen Elizabeth II Cup (2016)
Turnbull Stakes (2015, 2017, 2018)
Queen Elizabeth Stakes (2013, 2017, 2018, 2019)
H E Tancred Stakes (The BMW) (2013, 2016, 2017)
Hong Kong Gold Cup (2017)
Japan Cup (2017)
Hong Kong Champions & Chater Cup (2017)
Winx Stakes (Warwick Stakes) (2016, 2017, 2018)
Champagne Stakes (ATC) (2008, 2015, 2020)
Sires' Produce Stakes (ATC) (2015, 2017, 2019, 2020)
Golden Slipper (2020)
Racing awards
Longines World's Best Jockey (2017)
NSW Metropolitan Jockey Premiership (2008/09, 2011/12, 2014/15, 2016/17)
Alistair Haggis Silver Saddle (2007)
Honours
Australian Racing Hall of Fame (2019)
Significant horses
Winx, Cheval Grand, Werther, Samantha Miss, Exceed and Excel

Early LifeEdit

James Hugh Bowman was born on 14 July 1980 in Dunedoo, NSW.[8] His family spent time on three different properties when he was child – Cairn Hill, Burrgoen, before his parents decided to return to the family farm, Merotherie, in 1993.[9] The same year, Bowman left to commence his secondary schooling, boarding at The Scots College in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs.[10] Growing up on cattle and sheep properties, Bowman has stated that horses were always an integral part of the working farm and a connection with them was formed early in his life.[11] Bowman also comes from a lineage of horsemen. His grandfather, great uncle, father and uncle all rode as amateur jockeys.[12] Bowman himself was a member of the local pony club until he was 15, riding in country shows and displaying natural horsemanship. He also grew up playing polocrosse, campdrafting and riding in picnic races.[13] Bowman recalls being 13 when he decided that he wanted to pursue a career as a professional jockey.[14] In 1997, he left school and secured an apprenticeship with trainer Leanne Aspros in Bathurst, where he was also mentored by her husband, Billy Aspros,[15] who was 12-time champion jockey in the NSW Central Districts[16] and a Group 1 winner (Turridu, 1995 George Main Stakes).[17][18]

CareerEdit

On 3 April 1996, Bowman had his first official ride as an amateur jockey at the Mungery Picnic Races in Narromine, NSW aboard Go Campese.[19] Later that year on October 5, he rode his first winner at Wellington, NSW when he guided Slatts to win the Wellington Picnic Cup.[20] By the end of his first apprentice season in 1998, Bowman was the champion apprentice jockey in the NSW Central Districts.[21] In 1999, Bowman moved to Sydney for the final two years of his apprenticeship under the tutelage of jockey-turned-trainer Ron Quinton, who also hailed from Dunedoo.[22][23] He was crowned champion apprentice in Sydney for the 1999/2000 season.[24] In the spring of 2001, Bowman won his maiden group race when he rode Sportsbrat to victory in the Group 3 Missile Stakes at Rosehill Gardens. His first Group 1 win came on Defier in the 2004 Doomben Cup in Brisbane.[25] The following year, Bowman finished runner-up to Darren Beadman in the 2004/05 NSW Metropolitan Jockey Premiership (colloquially known as the Sydney Jockeys Premiership), the highest award for NSW-based jockeys. He then claimed his first premiership in the 2008/09 season riding 98 winners from 482 starts at a strike rate of 20.3%. Bowman has since won three more titles in 2011/12, 2014/15 and 2016/17.[26] As his career entered the 2010s, Bowman developed a strong association with trainer Chris Waller. He would go on to ride many feature race victories on Waller's horses, most notably Winx.[27] During his career, Bowman has ridden:

 
Bowman riding Werther to a second place finish in the Takarazuka Kinen behind Mikki Rocket at Hanshin Racecourse

WinxEdit

2014Edit

Winx had five different jockeys across her first 11 starts in 2014 and 2015, including Bowman. His involvement with Winx began during the Sydney Spring Racing Carnival in 2014. Bowman’s first ride on Winx came at her third career start, on September 6, in the Group 2 Furious Stakes at Royal Randwick. Winx won the race, making it 3 wins from 3 starts, while also registering her first feature race success. Two starts later, on October 4, Bowman would ride Winx to a second-place finish in the Group 1 Flight Stakes at Royal Randwick behind First Seal.[35][36]

2015Edit

Bowman did not ride Winx again until her twelfth career start during the Brisbane Winter Racing Carnival – a victory in the Group 1 Queensland Oaks at Doomben Racecourse on May 30. This was Winx's first Group 1 success and the second triumph in what was to become her 33 consecutive race winning streak. Two starts later, after a 15-week spell and a return win in the Group 2 Theo Marks Stakes at Rosehill Gardens, Bowman was back aboard Winx steering the mare to victory in the Group 1 Epsom Handicap at Royal Randwick on October 3. From this race on, Bowman became the permanent jockey for Winx. He would have one more ride on the mare in 2015 when he travelled to Moonee Valley, Melbourne to ride her in the $3 million-dollar Group 1 W.S. Cox Plate – the weight-for-age championship of Australia. Starting as the $4.60 favourite, Winx and Bowman went on to win the race by 4&¾ lengths from Criterion and Irish galloper Highland Reel. The race was won in a record time of 2:02.98.[37][38]

2016Edit

Bowman guided Winx to victory in her return to racing on February 13 in the Group 2 Apollo Stakes at Royal Randwick. He would then pilot Winx to three consecutive Group 1 wins over the course of the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival – the Chipping Norton Stakes, George Ryder Stakes and the $3 million-dollar Doncaster Mile. After a 20-week spell, Winx returned in the spring on August 20 with Bowman steering her to victory in the Group 2 Warwick Stakes at Royal Randwick. Then one month later, just as in the autumn, Bowman would ride Winx to three consecutive Group 1 victories over the course of five weeks. Wins in the George Main Stakes and Caulfield Stakes culminated in Winx and Bowman winning their second W.S. Cox Plate in a row. The race was won by a record margin of 8 lengths. Bowman became only the tenth jockey to win the race back-to-back, while Winx became the tenth horse in history to win two successive Cox Plates.[39][40]

2017Edit

Bowman and Winx started off their 2017 autumn campaign in the exact same fashion as 2016 with a win in the Apollo Stakes at Royal Randwick on February 13. Wins in the Chipping Norton Stakes at Randwick and George Ryder Stakes at Rosehill followed on February 25 and March 18 respectively. While Winx and Bowman’s lead-up had been identical to the autumn of 2016, their end goal had shifted to the $4 million-dollar Group 1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes. The race is the premier weight-for-age race of the Sydney Autumn Carnival and the showpiece event of The Championships a two-day race meeting comprising the most lucrative races of the carnival, attracting horses from around the globe. Starting as the $1.12 short-priced favourite, Bowman guided Winx to a 5-length victory ahead of Hartnell and Sense of Occasion.[41][42]

The duo returned in the spring registering three wins in Sydney at Royal Randwick – in the Warwick Stakes, Chelmsford Stakes and George Main Stakes – before heading to Melbourne to attempt to win a third consecutive W.S. Cox Plate. On October 7, Bowman and Winx won the Group 1 Turnbull Stakes in her first career start at Flemington Racecourse. Three weeks later, on October 28, Bowman piloted Winx to her third W.S. Cox Plate win, breaking her previous race record set in 2015 with 2:02.94. Winx became only the second horse in history to win three straight Cox Plates after Kingston Town did it in 1980, ‘81 and ’82. Likewise, Bowman was also only the second jockey to win three successive Cox Plates after Brent Thomson managed the feat from 1977-79 on three separate thoroughbreds – Family of Man (’77), So Called (’78) and Dulcify (’79).[43][44]

2018Edit

Winx would only race three times in the Sydney Autumn Carnival of 2018, all at Group 1 level. Bowman would ride her to success in her third consecutive Chipping Norton and George Ryder Stakes before she once again won the Queen Elizabeth Stakes for a second straight year. Winx and Bowman returned in the spring on August 18 when they won the newly named and upgraded Group 1 Winx Stakes – formerly the Group 2 Warwick Stakes, renamed in the mare’s honour. Winx became only the second horse in Australian racing history to win a race named in its honour after Black Caviar won the Black Caviar Lightning Stakes in 2013. Victories followed in the George Main Stakes and Turnbull Stakes, before Bowman and Winx won their fourth consecutive W.S. Cox Plate together on October 27. The duo were the first respective horse and jockey to win four successive Cox Plates.[45][46]

2019Edit

Winx and Bowman returned to racing, in what would be the mare’s final campaign, on February 16 with victory in the Apollo Stakes at Royal Randwick. Fourth successive Chipping Norton and George Ryder Stakes wins followed on March 2 and March 23 respectively. In their final race together, Bowman and Winx won their third consecutive Queen Elizabeth Stakes. Winx was officially retired after the race. Bowman and Winx’s partnership had produced 29 straight victories and 32 wins and 1 second placing from 33 starts together.[47]

2020Edit

As a result of horrifically dangerous riding Bowman was involved in the unfortunate death of a bright Australian prospect known as Hot N Hazy, nothing has been announced as of yet but it’s believed that Bowman will receive a lengthy suspension.

International SuccessEdit

Bowman’s first international feature race success came in July 2007 when he won the Group 2 Superlative Stakes aboard Hatta Fort at Newmarket Racecourse in Newmarket, England.[48] Bowman was in England as part of a three-month riding stint with trainer Mick Channon who was based at West Ilsley in Berkshire.[49] In August, Bowman, as part of the “Rest of the World” team, won the Shergar Cup at Ascot Racecourse – a four-team competition where three jockeys represent their region with the winning team determined by their overall performance across six races.[50] The four teams represented were Great Britain, Ireland, Europe and Rest of the World. In addition to winning the Shergar Cup, Bowman also received the Alistair Haggis Silver Saddle, the award given to the individual jockey who has accrued the most points in the competition.[51]

Bowman’s most successful year of international racing came in 2017. After securing his first two international Group 1 wins in 2016 aboard Werther in both the Hong Kong Derby (HK) and Queen Elizabeth II Cup (HK), Bowman would go on to win another four Group 1’s in 2017. Two of these victories were again on Werther in the Hong Kong Gold Cup (HK) and the Hong Kong Champions & Chater Cup (HK). Bowman won another Group 1 in Hong Kong when he rode Lucky Bubbles to success in the Chairman’s Sprint Prize (HK). His fourth win of the year came when he guided Cheval Grand to win the US$5.8 million-dollar Japan Cup (JP), the country’s most prominent race.[52] As a result, Bowman won the 2017 Longines World’s Best Jockey award presented by the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA) – the highest achievement for professional jockeys globally. The scoring for the award is based upon performances in the 100-highest rated Group 1 races internationally for that year, as established by the Longines World’s Best Racehorse Rankings Committee. Jockey’s accrue 12 points for first, 6 points for second and 4 points for third. Bowman’s four international Group 1’s, combined with Winx’s six Australian Group 1’s that year, provided 10 wins, along with 3 second placings and 1 third placing, giving him a total of 142 points. Ryan Moore and Frankie Dettori finished second and third with 124 and 86 points respectively. Moore notched 5 wins and Dettori finished with 6.[53]

 
Bowman and Cheval Grand win the 2017 Japan Cup

International Group 1 Wins[54]Edit

  • 2016 - Hong Kong Derby: 2000m, Sha Tin, Hong Kong – Werther
  • 2016 - Queen Elizabeth II Cup: 2000m, Sha Tin, Hong Kong – Werther
  • 2017 - Hong Kong Gold Cup: 2000m, Sha Tin, Hong Kong – Werther
  • 2017 - Chairman’s Sprint Prize: 1200m, Sha Tin, Hong Kong – Lucky Bubbles
  • 2017 - Hong Kong Champions & Chater Cup: 2400m, Sha Tin, Hong Kong – Werther
  • 2017 - Japan Cup: 2400m, Tokyo, Japan – Cheval Grand
  • 2019 - Hong Kong Classic Mile: 1600m, Sha Tin, Hong Kong – Furore[55]
  • 2019 - Hong Kong Derby: 2000m, Sha Tin, Hong Kong – Furore[56]

International Group Race Wins[57]Edit

  • 2007 - G2 Superlative Stakes: 1400m, Newmarket, England – Hatta Fort
  • 2015 - G2 Hopeful Stakes: 2000m, Nakayama, Japan – Hartley
  • 2016 - G2 Jockey Club Sprint: 1200m, Sha Tin, Hong Kong – Not Listenin’tome
  • 2017 - G2 Westbury Classic: 1400m, Ellerslie, New Zealand – Thee Auld Floozie

Personal LifeEdit

Bowman is married to Christine (née Walsh) and they have two daughters – Bambi and Paige.[58] Christine Bowman is an Irish national who met Hugh when she moved to Sydney after spending the Australian spring of 2002 tending to Irish trainer Dermott Weld’s two Melbourne Cup horses – Vinnie Roe and, eventual winner, Media Puzzle.[59][60] She is a former trackwork rider and on-course producer for TVN's Sydney race meetings.[61] The family currently reside in Coogee in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs.[62]

Bowman is named after his great uncle, James Hugh Bowman.[63] He was a private in the Australian Army (Unit: 1 Company Australian Army Service Corps) in World War II who was killed in action on 12 February 1942 in Malaya.[64]

Group 1 WinsEdit

 
Hugh Bowman in Japan (2015)
Hugh Bowman's Group 1 Wins[65]
RACE: YEAR: TRACK: DIST: HORSE:
CHAMPAGNE STAKES 2020 RAND 1600 KING'S LEGACY
ATC SIRES' PRODUCE STAKES 2020 RAND 1400 KING'S LEGACY
GOLDEN SLIPPER 2020 RHIL 1200 FARNAN
THOUSAND GUINEAS 2019 CAUL 1600 FLIT
GOLDEN ROSE STAKES 2019 RHIL 1400 BIVOUAC
QUEEN ELIZABETH STAKES 2019 RAND 2000 WINX
ATC SIRES' PRODUCE STAKES 2019 RAND 1400 MICROPHONE
GEORGE RYDER STAKES 2019 RHIL 1500 WINX
HONG KONG DERBY[66] 2019 SHAT 2000 FURORE
CHIPPING NORTON STAKES 2019 RAND 1600 WINX
FUTURITY STAKES 2019 CAUL 1400 ALIZEE
HONG KONG CLASSIC MILE[67] 2019 SHAT 1600 FURORE
W.S. COX PLATE 2018 M V 2040 WINX
MANIKATO STAKES 2018 M V 1200 BRAVE SMASH
TURNBULL STAKES 2018 FLEM 2000 WINX
EPSOM HANDICAP 2018 RAND 1600 HARTNELL
GEORGE MAIN STAKES 2018 RAND 1600 WINX
WINX STAKES 2018 RAND 1400 WINX
ATC AUSTRALIAN OAKS 2018 RAND 2400 UNFORGOTTEN
QUEEN ELIZABETH STAKES 2018 RAND 2000 WINX
GEORGE RYDER STAKES 2018 RHIL 1500 WINX
ROSEHILL GUINEAS 2018 RHIL 2000 D'ARGENTO
CHIPPING NORTON STAKES 2018 RAND 1600 WINX
JAPAN CUP 2017 TOKYO 2400 CHEVAL GRAND
W.S. COX PLATE 2017 M V 2040 WINX
TURNBULL STAKES 2017 FLEM 2000 WINX
UNDERWOOD STAKES 2017 CAUL 1800 BONNEVAL
GEORGE MAIN STAKES 2017 RAND 1600 WINX
QUEENSLAND DERBY 2017 DOOM 2200 RUTHVEN
CHAMPIONS & CHATER CUP 2017 SHAT 2400 WERTHER
KINGSFORD-SMITH CUP 2017 E FM 1300 CLEARLY INNOCENT
CHAIRMAN'S SPRINT PRIZE 2017 SHAT 1200 LUCKY BUBBLES
ATC AUSTRALIAN OAKS 2017 RAND 2400 BONNEVAL
QUEEN ELIZABETH STAKES 2017 RAND 2000 WINX
ATC SIRES' PRODUCE STAKES 2017 RAND 1400 INVADER
H E TANCRED STAKES 2017 RHIL 2400 JAMEKA
GEORGE RYDER STAKES 2017 RHIL 1500 WINX
HONG KONG GOLD CUP 2017 SHAT 2000 WERTHER
CHIPPING NORTON STAKES 2017 RAND 1600 WINX
COOLMORE STUD STAKES 2016 FLEM 1200 FLYING ARTIE
CANTALA STAKES 2016 FLEM 1600 LE ROMAIN
W.S. COX PLATE 2016 M V 2040 WINX
CAULFIELD STAKES 2016 CAUL 2000 WINX
GEORGE MAIN STAKES 2016 RAND 1600 WINX
QUEEN ELIZABETH II CUP 2016 SHAT 2000 WERTHER
ATC AUSTRALIAN OAKS 2016 RAND 2400 SOFIA ROSA
DONCASTER MILE 2016 RAND 1600 WINX
H E TANCRED STAKES 2016 RHIL 2400 PREFERMENT
HONG KONG DERBY 2016 SHAT 2000 WERTHER
GEORGE RYDER STAKES 2016 RHIL 1500 WINX
AUSTRALIAN CUP 2016 FLEM 2000 PREFERMENT
CHIPPING NORTON STAKES 2016 RAND 1600 WINX
W.S. COX PLATE 2015 M V 2040 WINX
CAULFIELD GUINEAS 2015 CAUL 1600 PRESS STATEMENT
TURNBULL STAKES 2015 FLEM 2000 PREFERMENT
EPSOM HANDICAP 2015 RAND 1600 WINX
QUEENSLAND OAKS 2015 DOOM 2200 WINX
ROBERT SANGSTER STAKES 2015 MORP 1200 MIRACLES OF LIFE
CHAMPAGNE STAKES 2015 RAND 1600 PASADENA GIRL
ATC SIRES' PRODUCE STAKES 2015 RAND 1400 PRIDE OF DUBAI
RANDWICK GUINEAS 2015 RAND 1600 HALLOWED CROWN
VRC SPRINT CLASSIC 2014 FLEM 1200 TERRAVISTA
VRC OAKS 2014 FLEM 2500 SET SQUARE
THOUSAND GUINEAS 2014 CAUL 1600 AMICUS
GOLDEN ROSE STAKES 2014 RHIL 1400 HALLOWED CROWN
ATC AUSTRALIAN DERBY 2014 RAND 2400 CRITERION
VINERY STUD STAKES 2014 RHIL 2000 LUCIA VALENTINA
ROSEHILL GUINEAS 2014 RHIL 2000 CRITERION
VICTORIA DERBY 2013 FLEM 2500 POLANSKI
THE METROPOLITAN 2013 RAND 2400 SEVILLE
QUEEN ELIZABETH STAKES 2013 RAND 2000 RELIABLE MAN
SYDNEY CUP 2013 RAND 3200 MOURAYAN
VINERY STUD STAKES 2013 RHIL 2000 NORZITA
H E TANCRED STAKES 2013 RHIL 2400 FIVEANDAHALFSTAR
CHIPPING NORTON STAKES 2013 W FM 1600 SHOOT OUT
FLIGHT STAKES 2012 RAND 1600 NORZITA
GEORGE MAIN STAKES 2012 RAND 1600 SHOOT OUT
ATC AUSTRALIAN OAKS 2012 RAND 2400 STREAMA
CHIPPING NORTON STAKES 2012 W FM 1600 SHOOT OUT
VICTORIA DERBY 2011 FLEM 2500 SANGSTER
FLIGHT STAKES 2011 RAND 1600 STREAMA
CHIPPING NORTON STAKES 2011 W FM 1600 DANLEIGH
CANTALA STAKES 2010 FLEM 1600 WALL STREET
VICTORIA DERBY 2010 FLEM 2500 LION TAMER
SPRING CHAMPION STAKES 2010 RAND 2000 EREWHON
GEORGE RYDER STAKES 2010 RHIL 1500 DANLEIGH
ATC AUSTRALIAN OAKS 2009 RAND 2400 DAFFODIL
VRC OAKS 2008 FLEM 2500 SAMANTHA MISS
FLIGHT STAKES 2008 RAND 1600 SAMANTHA MISS
CHAMPAGNE STAKES 2008 RAND 1600 SAMANTHA MISS
ALL AGED STAKES 2008 RAND 1400 RACING TO WIN
ROSEHILL GUINEAS 2007 RHIL 2000 HE'S NO PIE EATER
RANVET STAKES 2007 RHIL 2000 DESERT WAR
FLIGHT STAKES 2006 RAND 1600 CHEEKY CHOICE
TJ SMITH STAKES 2006 RAND 1200 RED OOG
QUEENSLAND OAKS 2005 E FM 2400 VITESSE DANE
DOOMBEN 10,000 2005 DOOM 1350 RED OOG
GEORGE RYDER STAKES 2005 RHIL 1500 COURT'S IN SESSION
DOOMBEN CUP 2004 DOOM 2200 DEFIER

ReferencesEdit

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