Blake Shinn partnered Centre Pivot to success in the Bernborough Handicap (1610m) at Doomben over the weekend and is confident the talented gelding’s performance figured as an ideal tune-up ahead of the Magic Millions Stayers Cup (1800m) on the Gold Coast on January 9th.
Jumping well from the wide and somewhat awkward barrier 10, Centre Pivot galloped forward and was settled in a good position by Shinn just off the pace of the race’s early leaders; receiving a good run in transit before producing a strong turn of foot to hit the line ahead of the Robert Heathcote-trained Lordag.
Shinn delivered a gem of a rider on the More Than Ready gelding for success on Saturday and is confident the horse is primed for success in the 2016 Magic Millions Stayers Cup.
“It’s great to see the horse starting to hit his straps, especially heading towards the Magic Millions which is his ultimate goal this preparation,” Shinn told Racing Ahead.
“It was pleasing to see, especially for the whole team at Segenhoe, John Sargent and Peter Robl.
“Like I said the target is the Magic Millions Stayers Cup so he’s peaking at the right time.
“He’s a pretty good horse and has a good record but he’s taken a little bit to come to hand this preparation but the blinkers have been applied and I think that’s part of the reason why he showed his best form on Saturday.”
Centre Pivot has been a strong and consistent performer for John Sargent since first appearing on course competitively in 2013; posting an impressive eight wins and five minors through eighteen career starts.
Returning in spring for seventh in a Rosehill Gardens minor over 1300m on August 1st, Centre Pivot responded well in taking out each of the talent-rich Canterbury Hurlstone RSL Handicap (1400m) and TAB.com.au Handicap (1500m) in his next two starts before returning to the paddock for a brief freshen.
Clearly needing the run when sixth in the November Handicap (1350m) upon resuming this time, Centre Pivot again failed to fire and tenth in the Listed Festival Stakes (1500m) in his only other start prior to the Bernborough Handicap on November 28th.