Moama's Matt Jackson's voice will boom across Echuca racecourse tomorrow and Sunday as he calls the races on his home track.By Geordie Cowan
Moama race-caller Matt Jackson will experience the biggest thrill of his career when he calls his hometown cup this weekend.
The 28-year-old will be calling both days of the Echuca Cup Carnival at Echuca racecourse on RSN and it will be broadcast on Sky Channel, TVN and through speakers out on the course.
‘‘So all the locals will be able to hear me — the pressure’s on,’’ Jackson said.
Jackson has only been professionally calling races for about six months, but has been a regular with the microphone for almost 13 years.
The chance to call professionally came when a one of the RSN greyhound callers retired, he said.
‘‘I was able to pick up his position and it’s just gone from there,’’ Jackson said.
‘‘I’m sort of blessed that I can call all three codes (thoroughbreds, harness and greyhounds).
‘‘It’s good to do something I’ve always wanted to do and not be stuck in an office all day.
‘‘I get to travel around Victoria doing what I love and getting paid to go to the races everyday, basically.’’
Jackson has called at many big races in his career, but getting to call the Echuca Cup would be a new career highlight, he said.
‘‘Dunkeld is my favourite that I’ve called so far because you get 10,000 to 12,000 people,’’ he said.
‘‘That’s a pretty big thrill when there’s that many people at the races when you’re calling and you hear them cheering.
‘‘When they start to cheer it gives you a bit of a thrill just to hear them, but obviously calling your hometown cup will be my biggest thrill to date.
‘‘I’m still excited to go and call a dogs meet at Shepparton on a Wednesday
Predominantly calling greyhound meets now, Jackson still rates calling thoroughbred racing as his most preferred.
‘‘They’re all good in their own different way,’’ he said.
‘‘Thoroughbreds are bigger fields and they’ll be more tight, but they can push through a lot easier, whereas in harness they settle into an order and you might get a couple of moves, but you can see what’s going to happen from a long way out.
‘‘And then the greyhounds: they’re just a raffle. Anything can happen with them, you’ve just got to be on your toes.’’
Jackson has been attending about 15 to 20 meetings a month with RSN, but he also spends a few days in Melbourne working with who he regards as Australia’s best race caller, Greg Miles.
‘‘It’s good to work with him, I’ve learnt a lot from him,’’ Jackson said.
‘‘He gives me feedback and I get to watch him and how he goes about it.
‘‘So now I imitate him at what he does to an extent in his professionalism and the way he studies for a race meeting and I just go from there.
‘‘He’s the best, so I just want to learn from the best.’’
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