Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Horse training a passion for Cornish

Mick Cornish has been training horses for 20 years.

ERIN LYONS August 21, 2014 3:04am

Donna Gaskin and Mick Cornish with Cisco Delago.

Former jockey Mick Cornish has been training thoroughbred racehorses with his partner, Donna Gaskin, for years.

The Echuca-based trainer said he decided to train horses about 20 years ago and had been devoted to it ever since.

‘‘I was on the track for about 30 years. I started as an amateur jockey,’’ he said.

‘‘But for the last 20 years, I have been training racehorses.’’

Cornish and his partner moved to Echuca nine years ago from Kyneton after they decided to chase the warmer climate.

‘‘It is just a better climate here, especially over the winter and the area is filled with really good people,’’ he said.

‘‘The horses enjoy the warmer weather and country surroundings.’’

While Cornish said the horses’ performances improved after relocating to Echuca, it was the community support and involvement that got them over the line.

‘‘The community here have really supported us,’’ he said.

‘‘We have got quite a few owners from the area and it has been great.’’

Each of Cornish and Gaskin’s horses are individually owned and while they own shares, they are purely dedicated to training.

‘‘Basically we just want to keep training and training,’’ Cornish said.

‘‘We hope to bring a lot of success to the town.’’

Over the past few years, Cornish and Gaskin’s reputation has grown in Echuca and the surrounding areas.

‘‘We just want to keep working with horses and hope to get a decent competitive team going in the area,’’ he said.

‘‘We have got some good horses. They all win races which is awesome.’’

Cornish’s standout horse at the moment is a locally owned thoroughbred who is dominating the race scene.

‘‘The marquee horse at the moment is Cisco Delago,’’ he said.

‘‘We have gotten some real enjoyment out of him over the past four years.’’

But it’s not all fun, games and glory for professional racehorse trainers.

Maintaining a racehorse is a full-time job and involves exercising, feeding and showering the horses, as well as running all over the country-side.

But Cornish could not imagine his life any other way.

‘‘It is a long job and sometimes we do 16-hour days, but it is rewarding at the end,’’ he said.

‘‘You have got to love it to stay in it.’’

Erin Lyons

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