EXACTLY five months after suffering a major shoulder injury, Tamworth jockey Wendy Peel has taken out the Louth Cup aboard the Rodney Robb trained Austin.
Peel became the first female jockey in a decade to win the coveted outback Cup when she guided Austin to a 10-length victory on Saturday.
The victory was Peel's maiden Louth Cup victory and her fifth career- Cup win.
"I managed to sit about one out for most of the race before getting a window to get out forward and run on for the win," Peel told the Leader.
"Austin responded really well and went on to win by about 10 lengths, which was pleasing."
Peel said the annual outback meeting had "a fantastic atmosphere" throughout the day.
"We had a great bunch of jockeys out there and the club really looked after us," she said.
"These days are really special, especially at the moment with things being so tough with the drought.
"The whole community comes together for these things and while the wind was blowing dust around and causing havoc, it was a fantastic day."
Peel received a plate and eight screws after she, Greg Ryan and Josh Adams fell from their horses after Son Of A Dun suffered a freak-heart attack.
"My shoulder is tracking pretty well at the moment," Peel said.
"In terms of the fall, it comes with the territory and you just look to move on.
"For me, it comes down to the support I have around me.
"Getting back on good horses with trainers like Rodney and Gavin Groth has really been the key."
Saturday's Cup victory was just the start of a successful weekend for Peel and Robb as they repeated the success at Naromine on Sunday.
"I rode Thermosa for Rodney on Sunday and it's another example of having that support around me," Peel said.
"It's another ride aboard a better horse and just another step in the right direction."
In the short term Peel will now turn her attention to Tuesday's meeting at Quirindi, where she will have rides for Sue Grills and Rod Northam.
"I'm on Ticket Keeper in race two for Sue and The Debater for Rod in the last," she said.
"Both are probably good each-way chances, so it should be a pretty good test."
As for her long-term future, Peel said she was looking forward to "a new experience" in the coming weeks.
"I will actually be going along with Rodney up to Birdsville to ride the Cup circuit up there," she said.
"There is three different Cups in the circuit and we will be gone for three weeks.
"I'll be riding Austin again, I've never ridden up there before, so it should be a lot of fun.
"Hopefully, we can add a Birdsville Cup win to the list."
Tuesday's Quirindi meeting will begin at 12.55pm.