Last year’s Tatt’s Tiara winning hoop Blake Shinn believes he can ride back-to-back champions in the Brisbane Group 1 feature race being partnered with this afternoon’s favourite Pohutukawa.
Twelve months ago Shinn guided the then Gai Waterhouse & Adrian Bott-trained mare Prompt Response to victory in the Tiara, which ran over 1350m at Doomben.
This Queensland Winter Racing Carnival Tiara Day is back at Eagle Farm Racecourse.
The $500,000 weight-for-age Tattersall’s Tiara returns to 1400m and the reigning champ Prompt Response, now trained by Chris Waller of Winx fame, has been scratched from the official line-up.
She was to be ridden by Glyn Schofield in the event and the withdrawal only strengthens the chances of Shinn enjoying successive victories in the final elite level of the 2018-19 racing season down under.
Godolphin and trainer James Cummings saddle-up the best three in Tattersall’s Tiara betting at Ladbrokes.com.au including Shinn’s mount, firming top fancy Pohutukawa.
The Medaglia D’Oro filly is at a race morning quote of $5 to salute from barrier four with Shinn retaining the ride.
He rode the progressive bay on June 8 at the track for her Stradbroke Day run against the colts and geldings in the Group 2 $350,000 Queensland Guineas (1600m).
Despite being in flying form this winter carnival in Brisbane, Shinn had no luck in the Guineas when Pohutukawa copped a nasty check during her run for home on the straight.
Showing great tenacity, she still managed to finish under a length away third behind the winner Kolding.
It was an error in judgement trying to slip the filly through a gap in the Group 2 according to Shinn who believes the check cost her the win.
She drops back to 1400m for the Tiara and is the one to beat according to Shinn, the bookies and the punters.
“I think Verry Elleegant, Arcadia Queen and Mystic Journey are the best three fillies in Australia and I think she already measures up in fourth, right behind them,” Shinn told Racenet this week.
“I really do think she is top class and will develop into one of the very best mares in the country.
“She should have won easily last start but that is on me because I made a judgement call in the race and I got it wrong.
“It was very frustrating for me to have that happen in a big race to this highly talented filly.
“I’m stoked the stable kept me on for the Group I and that just gives me an added desire to repay their confidence in me.”
Godolphin’s other two runners in the Tatt’s Tiara are fellow Medaglia D’Oro filly Multaja ($7.50) to be ridden by the soon-to-retire Jeff Lloyd and $5.50 second elect Savatiano.
“The only problem I see for Pohutukawa is the big field and just trying to get her galloping room at the right time,” Shinn, who is Hong Kong bound later in the year, said.
“But that’s a minor problem and that’s up to me to sort out.
“I’ve had a great time up here in Queensland and the winners have kept flowing so I hope it’s another good day for me on Saturday.”
The Tattersall’s Tiara is scheduled to run as Eagle Farm Race 8 at 3:35pm (AEST) with an 18-starter field.