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SHINN HOPEFUL OF SYDNEY AUTUMN RIDES

Former New South Wales based jockey Blake Shinn is hanging on to hopes of riding in the Sydney Autumn Carnival after he achieved a career high when winning the G1 Hong Kong International Sprint on Sunday at Sha Tin on Sunday

Jockey Blake Shinn riding in Hong Kong

Blake Shinn is awaiting news on Hong Kong's travel restrictions which currently make it impossible to return to Australia for short periods that would allow him to compete in the likes of the Golden Slipper and the Championships over a weekend.

“I would love to ride in Sydney next autumn,” the Hong Kong-based jockey told The Daily Telegraph this week.

“But I haven’t been out of Hong Kong for over two years now because of the pandemic.

“They are very strict with quarantine (protocols) over here and you have to do 21 days in isolation when returning to Hong Kong.

“If it was possible, I would jump on a plane and ride in Sydney on the big days during autumn.”

Shinn confirmed he is still in contact with several prominent Sydney trainers and often thinks of racing in his home country.

“Mark Newnham and John Thompson keep in touch, and I had a nice message from Chris Waller after I won on Sky Field,” Shinn said.

“I’m enjoying Hong Kong but I miss home, I miss the racing and the people.”

The Sydney hoop is a multiple time Group 1 winner in his home city but will look at the G1 win aboard Sky Field in Hong Kong as one of his best achievements. 

Unfortunately for Shinn the race was marred by a fall on the turn which saw four horses fall and jockeys injured. Two horses were euthanized as a result while fellow jockeys Australian jockey, Zac Purton, suffered four broken ribs and a broken nose, and Lyle Hewitson a fractured hip.

“This is the biggest race meeting in Hong Kong and to win one of the Group 1 races was great,” Shinn said.

“I’ve worked very hard for this and people have acknowledged the efforts I have put in since I’ve been in Hong Kong.

“But I’m not overly excited about it because of the fall. It is a bittersweet feeling with the race marred by the tragedy of what happened.

“It’s been hard to feel good about the win but it has been a career ambition to try and achieve it.”

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