Jockey Michael Rodd breathed a sigh of relief on Saturday night even though he was suspended for careless riding at Randwick.
Rodd’s favourite race horse glamour filly Atlantic Jewel is due to start next Saturday at Randwick and he was relieved when Racing New South Wales stewards said he could start his careless riding suspension on Sunday, leaving him free to ride at the Sydney Cup meeting.
Stewards found Rodd guilty of permitting his mount Larry’s Never Late of shifting in approaching and passing the finish line in the Listed $100,000 Japan Racing Association Plate (2000m) resulting Jimmy Fortunes and Hawk Island suffering interference and outed him until Friday May 11.
Under Racing NSW rules, a jockey can begin his or her suspension up to nine days from the day of suspension so any commitments can be fulfilled, but if he had been suspended in Victoria, he would not have been allowed to ride next Saturday.
“It worked out well,” Rodd said.
Rodd has been aboard Atlantic Jewel for four of her six wins and is amazed at the filly’s ability and will be back in time to ride at the Goodwood meeting at Morphettville on May 12.
“She is so exciting. We know she is very good, but we just don’t know how good.”
“It’s not a matter of her physically improving, but mentally switching on. She is always going to blow our minds because she is so good.”
“So it is always so exciting when you get on her back, whether it’s trackwork or race day. That’s why I’m glad I can ride her Saturday.”
Trainer Mark Kavanagh has only planned a light Autumn campaign for the Fastnet Rock filly and will choose between the Group 1 $400,000 All Aged Stakes (1400m) at weight for age or the Group 2 $175,000 Emancipation Stakes (1600m) for fillies and mares.
Kavanagh will make his mind up latter in the week in which race she will start after studying the nominations for both, but on her last start win when resuming from an enforced lay off she will be winning any race he selects for the unbeaten filly.
Atlantic Jewel blew away her opponents at her first start since winning by seven lengths in the Group 2 $300,000 Wakeful Stakes (2000m) at Flemington on October 29 last year with a three and three quarter lengths win over Mid Summer Music in the Group 2 $175,000 Yellowglen Sapphire Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on April 14.
Rodd was stuck for superlatives after the win and was at a loss to explain how good she was, saying that she is nowhere near the top of the tree yet.
“She’ll get better as she gets further,” Rodd said.
After Saturday Kavanagh will give the filly a break and then prepare her for the Spring with the Cox Plate the likely target.