Winx has continued her trouble-free build-up to her belated return to the track in the Group One Chipping Norton Stakes.
The champion’s trainer and jockey say missing the Apollo Stakes on February 17 is no concern ahead of Saturday’s 1600m-race at Randwick.
Hugh Bowman rode Winx in a routine gallop at Rosehill early on Thursday morning and said everything was in order for her much-anticipated return.
Trainer Chris Waller and the mare’s owners opted not to run her in the Apollo Stakes because Bowman was unavailable through suspension.
“Hugh Bowman is an important part of the Winx story,” Waller said.
“But it’s not just about him riding her. The fact is she didn’t need to run two weeks ago.
“It wasn’t a target race for her.”
The Chipping Norton is a target race and victory would take Winx to an Australian record 16 Group One wins, one more than the unbeaten Black Caviar.
Bowman said he did not expect any repeat of the incidents that beset Winx in the spring when she missed the start of her first two races before regathering to win.
“Compared to last preparation she ‘s more settled,” he said.
“She’s a bit happier in her own skin.
“This time last preparation it took her a while to relax.”
If she wins on Saturday, Winx will take her winning streak to 23.
— Racing NSW (@racing_nsw) February 28, 2018