Hong Kong-based hoop Zac Purton has been booked to ride Peggy Jean in the 2015 Tattersall’s Tiara at the Gold Coast on Saturday.
Purton revealed on June 9 that he was keen to return to Australia for the Tattersall’s Tiara meeting and he was granted clearance from Hong Kong Jockey Club officials to arrive in Queensland on Thursday before returning to Hong Kong for the meeting at Sha Tin on Sunday night.
The leading hoop did not have any luck in the Group 1 events at Doomben on Stradbroke Handicap Day when he partnered Feast For Eyes in the Group 1 J.J. Atkins (1600m), Harry in the Group 1 Queensland Derby (2200m) and Sacred Star in the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap (1350m) and he is chasing his first ever Group 1 victory in Queensland.
Purton will be riding Peggy Jean for the first time and he will be hopeful that he can help the filly return to the type of form that she showed when she won the Group 1 Sires Produce Stakes (1400m) as a two-year-old last year.
Peggy Jean started her autumn campaign with a credible fourth behind Adrift in the Group 2 Light Fingers Stakes (1200m) at Royal Randwick on February 14, but she failed to fire in the Group 2 Surround Stakes (1400m) at Warwick Farm on February 28 and she finished sixth in the Group 2 Kewney Stakes (1400m) at Flemington on March 14.
The Myboycharlie filly beat home just a single runner in the Group 2 Emancipation Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens on March 28 and she was transferred from Gerald Ryan to the care of Team Snowden before she finished seventh behind Mohave in the Listed Queensland Day (1200m) at Doomben on May 30.
Purton will be riding in the Tattersall’s Tiara for the fourth time in his riding career on Saturday and he will be looking to turn around his luck in the race after missing the placings with Kavorka (13th behind Miss Potential in 2004), Pourquoi (eighth behind Heptonstall in 2002) and Betrille (14th behind Porto Roca in 2011).
Team Snowden are also chasing their first win in the Tattersall’s Tiara after finishing in the placings with Beaded in 2011 and 2010.
Peggy Jean is currently available at 2015 Tattersall’s Tiara odds of $12, while Najoom and Srikandi are currently locked in a battle for favouritism.