Jockey Michelle Payne will be back to partner Yosei in the 2011 Winter Stakes this Saturday June 25, 2011, after a race fall that saw her forced out of the saddle for almost four months.
Payne suffered from multiple neck fractures after the race fall at Caulfield Racecourse earlier in the year.
The jockey partnered Yosei to Group 1 victories in both the AJC Sires’ Produce Stakes and the Thousand Guineas last year and is excited about the prospect of another Group 1 win in this Saturday’s 2011 Winter Stakes.
“I’m looking forward to it,” Payne said.
The 2011 Winter Stakes will be the last feature race on the Brisbane winter carnival horse racing calendar.
Payne arrived in Brisbane yesterday in order to ride Yosei in track work this morning.
“I’m flying up to Brisbane today (Monday) to gallop her tomorrow and then I’m coming back to ride at Kyneton,” Payne said yesterday.
The jockey feels that Yosei will be at her peak fitness when this weekend’s 2011 Winter Stakes, which is this year known as the Tattersall’s Tiara, takes place.
“This Saturday looks like it will be her best run this preparation,” Payne said.
“It’s going to be the toughest ask but she’s had a couple of runs under her belt now so she should run at her best hopefully.
“She did a terrific job to finish as close as she did first-up down the straight carrying 56kg against the older horses.
“Then second-up she went all right, she did what we expected her to do.”
Despite Yosei’s brilliant form, Payne realises that beating race favourite Beaded will be a challenge.
“It will be hard to beat Beaded unless she has an off day,” Payne said.
“She’s such a good mare.
“Yosei has a good record against her own age and we’re just hoping really.”
Payne is hoping that Yosei can be her fifth winner since getting back in the saddle three weeks ago.
“It takes a long time to get your race fitness back but I’m feeling really good,” she said.
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