Palmer, Gary 1959-2015

Ride With Calmer; Race With Palmer





When Radio TAB (Totalisator Agency Board) conducted a poll of 10 racing identities to name Queensland’s top 10 apprentice jockeys of all time, Gary Palmer was rated number one.

The almost shy Palmer rode several hundred winners as an apprentice and went on to be a top jockey in Hong Kong and Macau.





1959-12-27, Gary Palmer was born in Brisbane.

Gary learned to ride by his father Ronnie who was also a successful jockey himself.

Mr Ronnie Palmer became a trainer and Gary was apprentice to him.



Gary Palmer‘s inaugural winner was BROWN FALCON, at Kilcoy, Queensland, Australia.

He won his first Group 1 Doomben Cup on GREY AFFAIR.



He won the Melbourne Racing Club’s Group 1 Toorak Handicap on SALAMANDER.






The quietly-spoken Palmer commenced his career in Hong Kong and made a grand entrance at Happy Valley with a 140-1 double.

1984-09-23_5, Palmer EVEN BETTER (14-1) prepared by Arthur Ward was his first winner.

1984-09-23_9, Palmer PLOT RATIO (10-1) prepared by Bruce Hutchison was his second winner.


Season: Wins / Rides

1984-1985: 25/250

1985-1986: 28/211

1986-1987: 32/240

1987-1988: 18/181

1988-1989: 15/165

Total Wins: 118




1985-02-06 KCC Cup (JOYFUL)



1986-03-01 National Panasonic Cup (MONETARIST)

1986-03-22 IRC Cup (FIGHTING GLORY)

1986-04-19 Queen Elizabeth II Cup (POWERHOUSE)



1987-02-21 Sandown Park Cup ( GOLDEN GUN)



1988-03-12 Hong Kong Gold Cup (CRUISE CONTROL)

1988-04-02 Centurion Trophy (CRUISE CONTROL)


1988-07-11 Palmer moved to Macau after years of success in Hongkong for Bruce Hutchison and Eric Collingwood.


1993-01-02, Gary had a fall, then went home to have treatment in Australia.

1993-03-22, a medical report stating that Gary would be fit to ride on April 3 was rejected by MJC.

1993-04-08 Thursday, Gary flew back to Brisbane where he had six rides at the Gold Coast on that Saturday and another six at Eagle Farm on the coming Monday.



Gary won the Stradbroke Handicap again, this time on ROUSLAN, last time in 1986 on DAYBREAK LOVER.



Gary retired from riding and took up other business ventures.

In his riding career, his other trophy winners were:

Chipping Norton Stakes (GREY AFFAIR), Brisbane Cup (LOVE BANDIT), Queensland Oaks (LOOK ALOFT), Queensland Derby (FLORISSA) and QTC Sires (STAR OF THE KNIGHT).



He joined Racing Queensland as a full-time Steward.

2014-07-06, Gary expressed his interest in stewarding in Hong Kong.





2015-01-03, Gary Palmer passed away.

He is survived by his wife Debbie and two sons.

He has been fondly remembered and dearly missed by his family and friends.

Racing Victoria Chairman of Stewards, Terry Bailey, has paid tribute to the Queensland Steward and former top jockey Gary Palmer:

“I had the utmost respect for Gary not only as a polished rider but also for the way he went about conducting himself and his business. His demeanor in the Stewards Room was very professional and matter of fact regardless of the circumstances.”





Palmer‘s sons Matthew and Michael, taught by him, are both talented and successful jockeys.





Duckett, Terry – 《RacingMemories.HK》



Acknowledgment to Mr Lacuda Mengnah for relevant data.





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