Jockey Stephen Baster won’t be lacking in fitness if the Magic Millions Classic comes down to a tight contest.
Baster partners Claudia Jean for David Hayes and Tom Dabernig in the 1200m dash at the Gold Coast on Saturday.
While Claudia Jean was successful on debut last month at Flemington, Baster had a win in a different sport on Friday.
Taking time off from riding following his win aboard Decircles in the Standish Handicap at Flemington on New Year’s Day, Baster competed in an Olympic distance triathlon.
It was his first attempt at swimming 1.5 km, cycling 40.5 km before running nine kilometres at the Phillip Island Grand Prix track.
Baster finished 11th overall but was the first home in the 40-49 age group.
He said despite the hot conditions he had pulled up in good order following almost 2-1/2 hours of competition.
Baster is looking forward to heading back to the Gold Coast after riding Geromayo into ninth spot for Mick Price in last year’s race.
While Baster did not ride Claudia Jean on debut at Flemington when she won for apprentice Jye McNeil, he has ventured to Lindsay Park at Euroa to partner the filly in a clockwise jump-out.
“I went up and had a jump-out on her the reverse way and she handled it well,” Baster said.
“She got on the right leg and did everything right.
“She gave me a nice feel and she did win quite well at Flemington in what I think was a pretty handy race.
“I’m very happy to be on board.”
Baster says as always in rich two-year-old races, and even more so at the Gold Coast, barriers play a big part.
“Fingers crossed we get a good draw,” he said.
Claudia Jean is one of two fillies the Hayes-Dabernig combination will saddle up in the $2 million race for two-year-olds.
Miss Idyllic, placed in three of her four starts including a last-start second at Rosehill on December 20, will be ridden by Michael Walker.