Sidelined jockey Hugh Bowman has been given the green light to ride champion mare in the 2018 Group 1 $1m George Ryder Stakes (1500m) on Golden Slipper Stakes Day at Rosehill on Saturday.
Bowman was never in doubt today of passing the cognitive test that he was required to undergo before being allowed back in the saddle after he suffered a concussion as a result of a heavy tumble from two year old Performer in the straight in the Group 2 $300,000 UNSW Todman Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on March 10.
Bowman didn’t ride at last Saturday’s Coolmore Classic Race Day at Rosehill but was always confident that he would be right to resume riding this weekend.
“I don’t feel I could have ridden last weekend but having had a good week’s rest I’m feeling much better,” Bowman told Racing New South Wales News Desk.
“You’ve only got one head, don’t you, the brain’s an important part and I had a significant concussion.’’
As well as teaming back up again with Winx who is chasing her twenty-fourth straight victory, Bowman will also be back on board Winx’s Chris Waller trained stablemate Performer Group 1 $3.5m Longines Golden Slipper Stakes (1200m).
The Exceed And Excel colt was sent back to the trials and was passed by the stewards to return to the races after showing no signs of any waywardness in winning a 737m Randwick barrier trial on March 15.
“I am looking forward to it, believe it or not,’’ Bowman said of his Slipper ride.
“It seems to be a freak thing, he’s obviously reacted to something but he’s trialled well since so we will get on with it.”
Bowman had to be an onlooker last Saturday when jockey Kerrin McEvoy substituted for him on Winx as she galloped in between races at Rosehill, but he was happy with what he saw.
“I rested up and kept an eye on things. It’s amazing how many hours are in a Saturday – I’m usually so busy,’’ Bowman said.
“She looked really good and I chatted to Kerrin briefly after. She looked comfortable, as well as ever and ready to go.’’
Winx is one of eleven horses nominated for the George Ryder Stakes with the Australian Jockey Club extending the entry deadline until 11am on Tuesday, March 20.
Early George Ryder Stakes betting at Ladbrokes.com.au has Winx as the $1.10 favourite while Performer is rated a $7 chance in the Golden Slipper Stakes field that will be finalisd on Tuesday, March 20.