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Randwick’s leading trainer Gai Waterhouse has thrown troubled jockey Blake Shinn another lifeline with No Looking Back coming up with barrier five in the $1m Gold Coast Magic Millions 3yo Guineas (1400m) at the Gold Coast on Saturday.

No Looking Back and Driefontein

No Looking Back (inside) will start from barrier 5 with jockey Blake Shinn in the Magic Millions Guineas. Photo by: Daniel Costello

No Looking Back will be able to get the perfect run from the favourable drew for Shinn who feels that he is nearly back to where he was before enduring a twelve month ban for betting and realises that all his hard work over the last fourteen months is starting to pay off .

“I was coming off the lowest of bases,” Shinn said.

”Around the autumn carnival last year, Gai came up to me and asked if I wanted to get back to the top.”

”I said, ‘Of course.’ I was riding very poorly at the time. She just gave me a bit of advice and asked if I would come and ride work.

”She has been there encouraging me over the last year, and when I got suspended for 3½ weeks just before the spring carnival, she organised for me to go to America and ride work.

”It is probably one of the best things I have done. I have come back and ridden more consistently, not having the ups and downs that I was having before. I’m just a happier person, and it shows.”

Shinn was offered the mount on No Looking Back after stable rider Tommy Berry stuck with stablemate Driefontein even though he partnered No Looking Back to a first up win in the Listed $100,000 Carrington Stakes (1100m) at Rosehill on January 1.

Berry is the regular rider for Driefontein and was aboard when the Fastnet Rock filly took out last year’s $2m BMW Magic Millions 2yo Classic (1200m) at the Gold Coast in a controversial protest decision which saw her promoted to the winner’s stall after receiving interference from No Looking Back over the final fifty metres.

And he wasn’t disappointed with Driefontein’s first up effort when second as a very short priced favourite when she was boxed in behind the leaders in the $100,000 Wyong Magic Millions 3yo Stakes (1200m) at Wyong on December 20.

Berry won’t make the same mistake at the Gold Coast and will have Driefontein out of trouble from barrier three looking to secure another Magic Millions trophy to add to his two year old classic wins on Karuta Queen and last years trophy with Driefontein.

Magic Millions three year old Guineas favourite Sizzling, to be ridden by Craig Williams has drifted in the betting after drawing barrier twenty in the original draw and has been joined by Driefontein at $4.50 at the top of the market.

Waterhouse’s three year olds will again dominate the market with No Looking Back at $6.50 on the next line of betting.

About The Author

Mark Mazzaglia

Mark is a passionate journalist with a life-time involvement in the racing industry. He spent many years as an analyst and form expert at the Courier Mail and also has hands-on experience working with some of Queensland’s top trainers.


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