Jockey Blake Shinn has been booked to ride Midsummer Sun in the 2015 Gosford Cup and he is confident the imported galloper can become the first horse since Dark Diamond in 1972 to win back-to-back editions of the race.
Midsummer Sun defeated Brigantin and Destiny’s Kiss to win the 2014 edition of the Gosford Cup and has been unable to record a race win since, but was only narrowly denied a return to winning form in the Cellarbrations At Valentine Handicap (1900m), the Listed ATC Cup (2000m) and Summer Cup (2000m) on Boxing Day.
Shinn will be having his first race ride on Midsummer Sun in the Gosford Cup, but said that he has been happy with the form he has seen from the Monsun gelding and is confident the seven-year-old will get a nice run in transit.
“The horse is going very well,” Shinn told Sky Racing HQ this morning.
“He has got form lines all around Pelicano and Multilateral, which are his main opposition I feel today.
“Sam Kavanagh has put the blinkers on him and it just gives the horse an extra bit of spark.
“He hasn’t won for a while, but I think that he is building into a win.
“We have drawn favorably today and with the blinkers the horse is racing a little bit handier and that helps around the Gosford track.
“From the favorable alley he should get the right run to suit him and he should go very close to winning.”
Shinn has a very strong book of rides at Gosford this afternoon and he has also been booked to ride Bared in the Listed Takeover Target (1200m).
Barbed returned to racing with an upset win over Ball Of Muscle in the Listed Canterbury Classic (1200m) on December 27, but will carry an extra kilo and jump from the awkward barrier 11 in the Listed race this afternoon.
Shinn admits that Barbed got the run of the run in the Canterbury Classic, but was still most impressed with the performance of the Canny Lad gelding and believes he is capable of recording another win at Listed level if he gets some luck in running this afternoon.
“It is a different drawn and it is going to be a different run race,” Shinn said.
“I certainly have to go into the race positive.
“I felt my horse, although he had the run to suit the other, won on his merits and if he got out a bit earlier I think he would have won by a bit further.
“It is just all a matter of getting the right run in transit and I feel that I have the right horse to win the race today.”
Midsummer Sun is available at a quote of $4.20 to take out the Gosford Cup, while Barbed is available at Takeover Target Stakes odds of $5.50.