The Bendigo Guineas barrier draw has dented the chances of Paul Snowden getting a farewell win with the last horse he’ll saddle up as Melbourne stable foreman for Darley.
Snowden has been foreman in Melbourne for Sheikh Mohammed’s Darley since his father Peter became head trainer in 2008.
Sabkhat represents Snowden’s only chance of a farewell winner in Saturday’s Listed Bendigo Guineas before he ends his employment with the racing and breeding operation.
“I’m not holding my breath. He’s drawn 17 of 17,” he said.
Snowden returns to Sydney on Tuesday to start setting up a new training partnership with his father at Randwick after the Sydney autumn carnival.
He expects to have runners in his own name before then, with the first in around six weeks.
Despite the Bendigo meeting being the end of an era for Snowden, he expects to keep his emotions in check.
“It will be alright. I will probably feel more sad on Monday morning than I will tomorrow,” he said.
“Just for the simple fact that I’m used to getting up and going to work and I’m not going to be there on Monday.”
Snowden has handled many top-class gallopers during his Melbourne tenure and says Sepoy, Denman, Long John Earthquake have been highlight horses.
The Snowdens will train out of stables occupied by John O’Shea who will take up the position as Darley’s head trainer in May when Peter Snowden departs.
“It’s a new challenge, and I can’t wait to get going,” Paul Snowden said.
“It’s going to take a bit of time but we’ve got a good blend of young and older horses that are in the stable when John (O’Shea) does pass over and finish up there.
“I think that’s going to speed things up as to how we’re going to hit the ground running.”
The lightly raced Sabkhat is a $26 chance for Saturday’s race and while Snowden said a win would be great, he isn’t getting carried away.
“If he drew between one and five I’d give him a real good chance,” he said.