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Blake Shinn is gearing up for a big Magic Millions Race Day on the Gold Coast this Saturday where the comeback hoop’s book of six rides is headed by No Looking Back in the Magic Millions 3YO Guineas 2013.
The $1 million Gold Coast Magic Millions 3YO Guineas (1400m), scheduled as Race 5 at 2:45pm, will be the first time Shinn partners with Gai Waterhouse’s classy Redoute’s Choice filly who was first past the post in the Magic Millions 2YO Classic on this day 12 months ago.
No Looking Back, then ridden by Nash Rawiller, was downgraded to second however after a successful protest from stablemate Driefontein and their hoop Tommy Berry.
Both fillies return to the glitter strip for the MM Guineas on Saturday, Shinn happy to be aboard the longer priced of the two in the markets as he looks to continue his career resurrection after spending the bulk of 2011 on the sidelines after being disqualified for a betting scandal.
“It’s been pretty tough, but I’ve gritted my teeth and knuckled down,” 2008 Melbourne Cup winning jockey Shinn, 25, said of the past 12 months.
“It’s been going great.
“I’ve gradually built it back up and owners and trainers are starting to really support and get behind me now and things couldn’t be going any better.
“To win a big race at this point in time of my career would certainly put me right back on the map.”
If successful Shinn would owe a lot to Waterhouse, who he previously won a Sydney jockey premiership off an association with, as she has been full of advice and support recently.
“Obviously I was stable rider a couple of years ago and since I’ve come back she’s been very supportive,” he said of Waterhouse.
“She has given me a great opportunity here, which is fantastic. I’m looking forward to getting out there and giving it our best shot.”
A winner of two of her five starts to date No Looking Back resumed off a lengthy nine month break to make her three-year-old debut with a narrow win over Zaratone in the Listed Carrington Stakes (1100m) at Rosehill on New Year’s Day.
She backs up in the Guineas stepping up to 1400m for the first time, No Looking Back set to jump from an ideal barrier five draw.
“The stable is very happy with how she’s done,” Shinn said of the filly.
“She beat the older horses, which is very hard to do and she did it the hard way, chasing a tough, seasoned campaigner in Zaratone (last start).”
Driefontein meanwhile, who will again be ridden by Berry, has also drawn favourably in gate three, the daughter of Fastnet Rock looking to atone for her first-up loss as the odds-on favourite to She’s A Stalker in the Wyong Magic Millions 3YO Stakes on December 20.
In the latest Magic Millions Guineas odds Driefontein has firmed into co $4.50 favourite with Queensland champ Sizzling who suffered an early blow drawing gate 20.
No Looking Back meanwhile can be found a little further down the MM 3YO Guineas markets at a price of $6 – good odds according to Shinn.
“Back to three-year-old, she’s ideally suited and I believe she’s travelled up well, so all is well for a great run,” he said.
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