11-14 July 2019

Photo credit: Sue Crockett

Kaylea Maher takes out 2019 Tom Quilty Gold Cup

Local endurance rider Kaylea Maher got to fulfil her dream of holding up the most coveted prize in the sport of endurance ― the Tom Quilty Gold Cup ― when she crossed the line ahead of 298 other riders from across Australia and abroad in the iconic 160km endurance race.

Kaylea completed the ride, which was hosted at the Stirling’s Crossing Equestrian Complex in Imbil Queensland, in ten hours and eight minutes after setting off on the ultimate endurance challenge at midnight last night.

She said she was hopeful of taking out the win but there were many factors that influenced the end result.

“Every ride you just take as it comes as you never know what the end result is going to be,” said Kaylea.

“You always have to have hope in your horse and believe in your horse and that’s what we did today. We believed in each other and we worked through all our challenges and he came home really strong. I’m really happy with his achievement today.”

“Credit goes to the people at home in our stable, they do a fantastic job of looking after him and yes, it’s a lot of hours and a lot of time; a lot of tears and sweat that go into getting a horse to the condition they need to be in to perform on the day. And that’s what we’ve seen, the hard work’s definitely paid off and I want to thank everyone who’s helped me get there today.

“It doesn’t matter if you’re at home or away, the competition is still there but to actually pull it off on home ground with the support from all my family, my friends and my team, I guess that’s where it comes down to feeling good about having this win on home ground.”

Kaylea also gave credit to her horse, Matta Mia Dimari, a locally bred Arabian with a feisty spirit.

“The first time I saw this horse I had a connection with him and I always believed from the first time I rode him that he could take home the Gold Cup,” said Kaylea.

“I worked with him from day one on our farm and I had the goal set in my mind that I was going to work towards getting him ready for this 2019 Tom Quilty Gold Cup.”

Stirling’s Crossing Endurance Club hosted the ride and President Kim Moir said she was delighted that a local rider took home the Tom Quilty Gold Cup, especially a success story like Kaylea Maher.

“Kaylea has had an impressive endurance record having completed 122 official rides covering over 11,600km to this point, as well as taking home the lightweight title at the Tom Quilty Gold Cup three times in the seven years she has competed,” Kim said.

“She’s been riding since she was a young girl and now dedicates her time to training endurance horses, something she does incredibly well as seen in her performance today.”

“The ride has been very successful with exceptional conditions today given the cool, dry weather and condition of the tracks in the Imbil State Forest. There are riders aged 12 to 77 still out on the track and they have until midnight tonight to complete the ride.”

“There is great prestige associated with completing the ride, hence the tagline: To complete is to win, and every rider out there today will be aiming to complete within the 24-hour deadline of midnight tonight to collect their Quilty buckle.”

“We’ve also got the original Tom Quilty Gold Cup here from the Australian Stockman’s Hall of Fame which for many riders is a wonderful connection to when this ride began 54 years ago.  The idea was based on the premise of completing 100 miles (or 160km) in one day and when R.M. Williams approached his good friend Tom Quilty about the idea in 1966, Tom donated the $1,000 which paid for the original gold cup which is here today.”

Second place went to Jamie Green from Brisbane and third place to Paul Bidei from France.

Results may be subject to change, please check the official results at www.aeraspace.com.au.


1ST: Kaylea Maher, Imbil, QLD on Matta Mia Dimari
2ND: Jamie Green, Brisbane, QLD on No Regret Shocking
3RD: Paul Bidei, France on Beaudacious te

1ST: Jolene Cole, Panuara, NSW  on Baribo
2ND: Paul Roosen, Cedar Creek, QLD on Kinder Surprise Silkk
3RD: Luke Annetts, Glen Innes NSW on Churinga Taboo

1ST: Kaylea Maher, Imbil, QLD on Matta Mia Dimari
2ND: Jamie Green, Brisbane, QLD on No Regret Shocking
3RD: Paul Bidei, France on Beaudacious te

1ST: Emma Dimech, Table Top, NSW on Diamond Dazzler
2ND: Nikki Scott, Imbil, QLD on Anglesea Finneas
3RD: Floor Braunius, Netherlands on Larntainey Silver Treasure

1ST: Emma Cole, Panuara, NSW on Windradyne Flame
2ND: Georgie Barber, Dayboro, QLD on Concerto
3RD: Modena Schofield, Bellingen, NSW on Sharabel Kalarney