Cameron gets late call up for Grand Final
By Michael Guerin
Plenty of people will tell you they feel lucky just to involved in a group one race.
Tony Cameron, the super sub driver for Saturday’s $150,000 Interdom Trot Final, doesn’t just feel lucky. He feels blessed.
Cameron was looking forward to heading to Alexandra Park to work and watch until trainer Phil Williamson tapped him on the shoulder and asked if he could partner Monty Python.
The Oamaru trotter sneaks into the Final after Habibi Inta and Bonnie Highlander were both scratched with injuries on Friday, Bonnie Highlander’s suspensory tear sending her to the broodmare paddock.
For 32-year-old Cameron it is the pinnacle his career but the reality is for him every day is a second chance.
A decade ago the personable young horseman was diagnosed with Hodgkins Lymphoma after a tumour was found in his chest. Nine months of chemotherapy and a month of radiation treatment followed.
“It was a pretty tough time but I got my five years clearance a long time ago now and am still in remission,” says Cameron.
After his fight with the demon Cameron joined champion driver Tony Herlihy and with the boss’s support he has grown in confidence and now looks at home in the big time of Alexandra Park racing.
“But this is still a big deal for me, you never think you will pick up a driver in an Inter Dominion Final, especially the day before the race.
“So I am going to enjoy it. Go out there and hope they go hard and give him his chance.”
Monty Python probably won’t win. Cameron already has.