McEvoy steps in to steer Winx in gallop
TRAINER Chris Waller has turned to Kerrin McEvoy to partner mighty mare Winx in a crucial exhibition gallop between races at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday.
With Winx's regular jockey Hugh Bowman still recovering from a concussion he received in a race fall last week, McEvoy will put Winx through her paces in a solo workout over 1000m.
McEvoy has never ridden Winx in a race or barrier trial but he has been on her in exhibition gallops previously when Bowman was unavailable.
If Bowman does not get a medical clearance to ride next week, McEvoy is expected to pick up the mount on Winx when she aims for her 24th consecutive win in the Group 1 $1 million George Ryder Stakes (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens on March 24.
Bowman was injured when he fell from Golden Slipper hopeful Performer in the Todman Stakes at Randwick last Saturday.
The world's top-rated jockey was advised by his neurologist yesterday not to ride this weekend but the jockey remains confident he will be cleared to ride next week.
"My plan is to do the cognitive test next Monday and hopefully get the all clear to ride trackwork on Tuesday,'' Bowman said.
Meantime, Randwick Guineas winner Kementari could line up against Winx in a stellar showdown for the George Ryder Stakes.
Trainer James Cummings said Kementari has come through his brilliant Randwick Guineas win last week in great order and he hasn't ruled out starting his outstanding colt in the Ryder.
Pat Webster, trainer of Happy Clapper, has Hall of Fame jockey Damien Oliver on standby to ride dual Group 1 winner in the George Ryder. Blake Shinn, who has won the Epsom Handicap and Canterbury Stakes on Happy Clapper this season, will tell connections on Sunday if he will ride the horse in the Doncaster Mile.
Owner Michael Thomas wants the same jockey to ride "The Clapper" in the George Ryder Stakes and Doncaster Mile which is why Webster has Oliver ready to take over next week if required.
Winx is the $1.10 favourite for the George Ryder with Kementari next at $8 and Happy Clapper rated a $15 chance. It is then $26 or longer the field with Brave Smash and Tosen Stardom on the fourth line of betting.