VNR, audio & images: Queenslander wins 160km Tom Quilty Gold Cup endurance race

Broadcast quality VNR, images, audio interviews and full results media release below. Queenslander takes out national 2019 Tom Quilty Gold Cup

Kaylea Maher wins 160km endurance ride steeped in history

Yesterday local endurance rider Kaylea Maher got to fulfil her dream of holding up the most coveted prize in the sport of endurance riding ― 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.

Ms Maher 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 on Friday 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 Ms Maher.

“You always have to have hope in your horse and believe in your horse, and that’s what we did. 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.”

“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 here.

“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 feels good to have this win on home ground.”

Ms Maher 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 Ms Maher.

“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,” Ms Moir 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 in the Tom Quilty.”

“The ride was very successful with exceptional conditions given the cool, dry weather and condition of the tracks in the Imbil State Forest. There were riders aged from 12 to 77 and they all had from midnight on Friday until midnight last night 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 yesterday was aiming to complete the 160km track within the 24-hour deadline to collect their Quilty buckle.”

“We also have 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 concept in 1966, Tom donated the $1,000 which paid for the original gold cup which is here at the complex at the moment.”

Second place went to Jamie Green from Brisbane and third place to Paul Bidei from France while the first lightweight over the line was Emma Dimech from Table Top, NSW.

The first heavyweight and junior over the line was mother-daughter team, 13-year-old Emma Cole and mum Jolene Coles both from Panuara, NSW.


Please note: Results may still be subject to change and can be checked at



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: Matthew Gadsby, Anstead, QLD on Tora Sardeeka


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


Attached photo caption: Kaylea Maher gallops over the finish line in first place at the 2019 Tom Quilty Gold Cup. (Credit: Colin McLellan)

Other images available in the Dropbox link below.


Audio Files available in Dropbox including interview with winner.

Broadcast quality footage and audio available in this folder includes:

  • Interview with winner, Kaylea Maher from Imbil, QLD and vision of her crossing the line
  • General overlay including on-track footage, vetting and strapping (when the horses return to camp after each of the five legs).
  • Exciting midnight start with 300 horses warming up and the galloping off into the forest, also includes campfire atmospheric shots at the beginning
  • Sunrise shots coming back in for vetting.
  • Golden Guitar winning folk singer Trevor Knight singing the The Ballad of Tom Quilty live ten minutes prior to the race starting.
  • MP3 of Trevor’s song
  • Interview part-way through the event with head vet Matthew Walker on the welfare of the horses – there are 20 vets onsite.
  • Interview with rider organiser Kim Moir about the original Tom Quilty Gold Cup being here from the Stockman’s Hall of Fame.
  • Pre-event interview with Kristie Taprell, defending champion from Holbrook, NSW
  • Pre-event interview with Kenneth Gordon – oldest Queenslander from Toowoomba, QLD at 76
  • Pre-event interview with Simon Bain – oldest rider from Murrumbateman, NSW at 77
  • Drone footage of the complex from yesterday

/Public Release.