Leading jockey Hugh Bowman can’t fault Winx as he gives the last word about the glamour mare in the lead up to the Group 1 $1m China Horse Club George Ryder (1500m) at Rosehill on Saturday.
Bowman was aboard Winx for her final gallop on Thursday morning before Saturday’s weight for age contest and he was very pleased with the way she rounded off her preparation.
“Really pleased with her,” Bowman said
While Winx worked on a soggy Rosehill course proper today, Bowman said the glamour mare completed a more serious hit out on Tuesday morning.
“I was here on Tuesday morning and rode her work,” Bowman said.
“She went through her paces really well on Tuesday, she did her main piece then but this morning was just ticking over for Saturday’s event. She is feeling stronger than ever, looking forward to the weekend now.”
Bowman said that he has no worried about Winx facing another heavy track after coming through her last start win in the Group 1 $600,000 Chipping Norton Stakes (1600m) at Randwick on February 25 on a heavy 9 in good order but only hopes that it is a consistent surface.
“It is obviously pretty rain affected. I don’t think it is quite as wet as it was when she raced in the Chipping Norton Stakes at Randwick though,” Bowman said.
“With a fair bit of rain forecast it is every chance it will get to that stage I guess.”
“It is not something we can really predict and see how we go.”
“My main concern is the track being consistent. I’ve said that before, I am not too worried about it being wet, but it is important for me and everyone involved that the track is consistent as possible.”
“Her race on the weekend isn’t too late in the day, you wouldn’t imagine that it is going to be too chopped up by the time she races.”
The Rosehill track was rated a heavy 9 on Thursday morning after receiving 49.5mm of rain in the last seven days with more rain forecast for the Sydney area in the lead up to the weekend.
Bowman said that the George Ryder has again attracted a high quality field which also includes Group 1 winners Chautauqua, Le Romain and Hauraki.
“It is always a good race. In my personal opinion, every year it is probably one of the best races throughout the whole Sydney Autumn, because of the makeup of the race, the distance and the conditions,” Bowman said.
“It is going to be a good test for the mare. It is going to be a good test for them too.”
Winx is lining up for her sixteenth straight win and eleventh Group 1 trophy in the George Ryder and the dual Cox Plate winner is again a very short priced favourite to keep her winning run going.
Ladbrokes.com.au have Winx at $1.20 for the George Ryder with the Team Hawkes trained Chautauqua the only other runner under double figures at $7.50 ahead of Le Romain at $11.