Western Australia's leading junior driver Morgan Woodley heads a star studded list of young driving talent who will take part in the 2012 $25,000 RWWA Rising Stars Invitation Stakes at Gloucester Park on Friday night.
The 2012 NSW Rising Stars winner Sam Hewitt arrives in Perth on Wednesday to join the 11 local drivers in the field.
Western Australia's 2012 Rising Stars Series winner Aiden De Campo, runner-up Shane Butcher and third placed Dylan Egerton-Green will also take part in Friday night's race.
Under the conditions of the Rising Stars Series the balance of the field is made up of the leading eight junior drivers on the WA State Drivers List as at July 15th.
The leading eight junior drivers this season apart from those who earned their spot through the Rising Stars Series are:
Morgan Woodley (1st on State Premiership)
In case there is a driver unable to take part in the race Cody Wallrodt has been named as emergency.
Three of this year's drivers in Morgan Woodley, Tom Buchanan and Courtney Burch have already won the Rising Stars Invitation Stakes in the five years that the race has been part of the local calendar.
|2/03/2007||SNEAKYN ON OVER NZ||A T (Adam) Kirke||S C (Stephen) Reed|
|9/05/2008||STEUBEN NZ||G E (Gary) Hall (Snr)||M L (Morgan) Woodley|
|6/03/2009||SPIRITWITHIN||P J (Phillip) Fletcher||T B (Thomas) Buchanan|
|12/03/2010||ZED||M G (Matthew) Scott||C D (Courtney) Burch|
|4/03/2011||SANDLER||R A (Ross) Olivieri||C D (Chris) Voak|
Sam Hewitt joins other New South Wales Rising Stars in Ricky Alchin, Stacey Towers, Jim Douglass, Robert Morris and Ashley Siejka in making the trip west to have their first drive at Gloucester Park.
The 19yo Hewitt has a strong family background in harness racing and his grand-father Tom Hewitt brought Nikalong Shadow to Perth for the 1989 Inter Dominion Championship.
Nikalong Shadow qualified for the final that year and, driven by Sam's uncle Bernie Hewitt, finished fifth to fellow 4yo Jodies Babe.
Co-incidentally, when WA's Aiden De Campo won a heat of this year's NSW Rising Stars Series at Penrith behind the horse Cruisin Carl was trained by Bernie Hewitt. De Campo's trip to Sydney was part of his prize for winning the WA Rising Stars Series.
Sam Hewitt began driving in 2009 and in his three seasons of race-driving has a record of 348 drives for 29 winners, 30 seconds and 33 thirds. Fifteen of the winners have come this season.
The random ballot for drives in Friday's race will be done this afternoon.
Prizes and trophies for the 2012 RWWA Rising Stars Series will be presented trackside at Gloucester Park on Friday night to the placegetters in that series.
There will also be a trophy for the winning driver in Friday Night's RWWA Rising Stars Invitation Stakes.