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By Graham Potter | Sunday, August 11, 2019

Graham Potter writes a weekly column for the Sunshine Coast daily. Due to demand from those having trouble accessing the paper these columns are now also published on HRO courtesy of the Sunshine Coast daily.

When he originally relocated to Australia from South Africa, multiple Group 1 winning jockey Sean Cormack knew that he would basically have to start over again and work from the bottom up to try and establish himself, earn respect and, ultimately, reach a level of acceptance within the Australian riding ranks which his talent deserves.

He also knew that achieving those goals would be no easy ride.

Cormack, who has based himself at the Sunshine Coast throughout, worked hard but, just when all of his effort was starting to pay some dividends, he suffered a major knee injury with cost him a full ten months out of the saddle.

It was a serious setback.

“I probably did damage to everything in my knee … severe damage … barring breaking a bone,” explained Cormack. “Everything was torn. Everything was smashed. My meniscus had twisted and turned inside out. My ligaments were all torn.

“Because I knew it was a serious injury, I did everything the correct way coming back. I didn’t try to cut any corners. I had a fantastic team behind me who got to where I am now … to where I wanted to be. I wanted to be able to get on a horse with confidence and focus and not be worried about my knee and what might happen,” Cormack said.

Talk about starting over again!

“It’s tough. You go through moments when you sit there and get frustrated because you get one ride or two rides and you think what am I doing wrong, but then you realise that it is not you … you literally just have to start from the beginning once again and build relationships and trust and things develop from there”, continued Cormack.

“And that is happening again for me now.

“It’s a new season. I have a new manager and I have set new goals. My previous manager Cameron Partington helped me a lot and I thank him for that. He looks after the interests of more than one jockey though and I just felt I needed somebody who could just focus on me.

“Recently retired Sunshine Coast champion jockey Damian Browne was looking to start up as a manager and I am happy we have got together. He has his contacts but I also need to work at lifting my profile myself and, of course, riding winners does that best of all.

“We are starting to build but a lot of trainers still don’t really know who I am and what I can do. I’ve given it a year … without getting flustered … to reach my goals because I think it is going to take a year before I will be grounded in Queensland racing with people knowing who I am and knowing my capabilities.

“Like I said, it’s tough but I'm up for the challenge!"

More articles

Sean Cormack … in for the fight ...
Sean Cormack … in for the fight ...
… as he was when getting Courageous Rock home at Ipswich last Wednesday

Photos: Graham Potter
… as he was when getting Courageous Rock home at Ipswich last Wednesday

Photos: Graham Potter
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