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COREY Brown was born to ride. His grandfather Trevor and father Jack were both successful jockeys in the northern NSW region but Corey wasn't always so sure about his future destiny.


His parents divorced when he was a young age and he was essentially raised by his Mother but his father, who by then was working as a mechanic was close by.


Corey is fond of recalling the moment when he made his career choice. ``Dad said there were two things he could teach me to do change tyres or become a jockey. Needless to say, tyres didn't appeal,'' Corey says.


Corey is fond of recalling the moment when he made his career choice. ``Dad said there were two things he could teach me to do change tyres or become a jockey. Needless to say, tyres didn't appeal,'' Corey says.


Corey was 15 when he became an apprentice jockey, indentured to Eric Anderson at Kempsey.

He had an inauspicious start to his riding career. At his very first race ride, his mount snapped a stifle and crashed to the turf with less than 100m to go.


Fortunately Brown wasn't hurt, the only thing bruised was his ego, but it was hardly the sort of start to his riding career he had dreamed about. But what happened next is typical of his character and determination.


``The fall was worrying me a bit but I got straight back up and rode again that day. It was probably the best thing I could have done,'' Corey recalled.


He rode his first winner at Kempsey in 1991 on a horse called Another Square and it wasn't long afterwards when former champion jockey Malcolm Johnston told the teenager he should move to Sydney to further his career.


``Malcolm actually got me a start with Neil Campton at Rosehill,'' Brown said. ``I idolised Malcolm as a young kid, as a lot of apprentices did, and one day he said to me I was too good to be riding at the provincials and he would help me get a start in the city.


``If it wasn't for Malcolm, I don't know what would have happened because I didn't know anyone in Sydney at the time.''


Corey then transferred his indentures to Campton and his sheer talent and ability were soon obvious.


Just as Corey was establishing himself among Sydney's leading apprentices came a tragic incident that haunts the jockey to this day.


It was October, 1993, a Rosehill Saturday meeting, when then 17-year-old apprentice was riding in the race where jockey Ken Russell was killed in a tragic race fall.


Stewards had determined the incident was accidental but memories of that day have never left Brown. Even today, the emotions stirred by Russell's death are still very real for Brown.


``I very nearly walked away from racing. It was the lowest point of my life,'' Corey said. ``It took me a long time to get over that, but it helped that the stewards found I was in no way to blame for the fall. Still, it was a tough lesson to learn very early in life.''


Corey admits there were times during this period when he felt like giving the sport away as he wondered whether there really was a future for him as a jockey.


His master, Neil Campton, watched how the teenager suffered during this dark period before coming out with a surprising statement: ``Corey will be champion jockey in Sydney one day.''


This wasn't a prediction from Campton, more a matter of fact. He was basing his judgment not only on Brown's obvious talent but on how the teenager had responded to adversity. This was all about character.


Campton was right. Brown endured and that same season won the Sydney apprentice's premiership. His star was on the rise.


Corey rode his first Group One winner in 1998 on Camino Rose for trainer Marc Conners. He has hardly looked back since.


He was then invited to ride in Hong Kong _ competing every race against the world's best jockeys for two seasons where he more than held his own.


With his riding skills taken to a new level, Corey returned to Sydney and in 2001/02 he won the Sydney jockeys premiership with 106 wins. The statement Campton made nearly a decade earlier had come true.


He won the 2001 Sydney Cup on Mr Prudent for the late George Hanlon and the following season he picked up more Group One successes with Fine Society in the Canterbury Guineas and Kusi in the Blue Diamond Stakes.


Then on Epsom Day 2003 Corey Brown made the racing world sit up and take notice. He rode four winners at the feature Randwick meeting including a Group One hat-trick with Clangalang (Epsom Handicap), Niello (Spring Champion Stakes) and Unearthly (Flight Stakes). He would ride seven Group One winners in 2003/04.


In 2005, Corey completed the rare AJC Australian Derby-AJC Australian Oaks double on Eremein and Dizelle then later that year accepted another contract to ride in Hong Kong.


The second stint in Hong Kong didn't end as Corey would have wished but he returned to Australia and quietly set about regaining his position as the nation's leading rider.


Corey achieved every jockey's goal in 2007-08 when he finished the season as the nation's leading Group One rider with seven majors including five in succession on Apache Cat Lightning Stakes, Australia Stakes, T.J. Smith Stakes, Doomben 10,000 and BTC Cup. He also won the Victoria Oaks on Arapaho Miss and the Turnbull Stakes with Devil Moon.


The year finished with his heart-breaking second on Bauer in the Melbourne Cup, going under in the tightest of finishes to Viewed. This was Corey's third minor placing in a Melbourne Cup after his third on Lahar (1999) and second with Mr Prudent (2002). Corey bounced back from that disappointment to ride three Group One winners during the 2008-09.


The Melbourne Cup carnival of 2009 was, without doubt, Corey Brown's most outstanding achievements in the saddle. In the space of seven days, Corey won the Victoria Derby on Monaco Consul, Melbourne Cup with Shocking and Emirates Stakes on All American.


Corey could do no wrong as he swept a hat-trick of majors on the biggest stage in Australian racing.


But it was his boyhood dream of finally winning a Melbourne Cup on Shocking that he will never forget.

``This is what you dream about as a jockey. Since I was a little boy growing up in Wingham, I've imagined what it would be like winning a Melbourne Cup,'' Brown said after Shocking's win.


``Finally I'd won it. This was my ninth ride in the race but after two seconds and a third in previous years, I was starting to think maybe my chance to win it had gone.


``But when we got to the front in the straight, that final 50m where I knew we had the race won, was an amazing feeling. Time seemed to stand still, it took forever to reach the winning post but it was the greatest feeling I've had in racing.''


Corey Brown is at the peak of his career and now regarded as the nation's most outstanding jockey. A naturally gifted jockey, he seems impervious to pressure and rarely makes a mistakes in races, whether he is riding in Group One races at Royal Randwick or Flemington, or a midweek maiden at Warwick Farm.

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