Logan McNeil

Logan McNeil (Image: Racing Photos)

McNeil set for Flemington debut

Last November the McNeil name forever became a part of Flemington folklore.

On Saturday at Headquarters, that story could have a next chapter, as 20-year-old Logan McNeil rolls his gear into the track for the first time.

Not only will it be McNeil's first time riding at Australia's most famous racecourse, but his first ride at one of Melbourne's four metropolitan venues. McNeil's only metropolitan rides have come at a city-graded meeting at Mornington and as part of an apprentice series in Queensland.

"I'm straight to the top, so it's very exciting," he said.

"Especially when Jye started riding in the city I'd venture down to Flemington with Mum and Dad.

"So it will be good to be on the other side of the fence."

McNeil's opportunity comes via the Michael Kent-trained Red Heeler in the $125,000 RMBL Investments Rising Stars Final (1400m), where he rides against 11 fellow apprentices - a series brother Jye won twice in his youth.

That experience down the famous Flemington straight is knowledge his younger brother is keen to tap into before Saturday.

"I will give him a call for his opinion, he should know what he's saying, he is always very helpful like that," McNeil said.

"I am very appreciative to get a ride off someone like Mick, I will go through and do the form and I am sure we will come up with a plan.

"The horse has won some nice races and won at Flemington before."

Eight months since his brother Jye carried the Williams family colours to a historic seventh Melbourne Cup win, McNeil says the achievement still feels surreal.

"Sadly, I couldn't go as they weren't allowing crowds, but watching from home was just amazing," McNeil said.

"It's pretty incredible, I didn't think it was going to happen.

"It's still hard to sink in, I watched the replay recently and I still get chills."

While a maiden city victory at Flemington would be sweet on Saturday, McNeil is also eyeing off some other goals soon, having returned to the saddle earlier this year after undergoing surgery to his foot as that he required following a trackwork accident.

"I'd like to try venture to the city a bit more and get that first winner," McNeil said.

"Also dropping off my two-kilogram claim in the country ... I think I have five winners to go." 

The McNeil brothers are also rallying together to help raise money for Logan's friend James Lang, who has been left a paraplegic after a motorbike accident.

The framed memorabilia is currently sitting at a bid $3600, with the auction set to end next week.