A breakthrough Group One triumph last weekend has further fuelled jockey Christian Reith’s desire to win another major race at Flemington, this time aboard Tiger Tees.
Reith claimed the first Group One success of his career when he guided exciting filly Nechita to a convincing Coolmore Stud Stakes win on Victoria Derby day.
It was a moment to savour for Reith, but he believes he’s a genuine chance of saluting again at the elite level in Saturday’s Group One Patinack Farm Classic (1200m).
This time he rides a horse he credits with playing a major role in rejuvenating his career.
Tiger Tees has won nine of his 15 starts with Reith aboard for seven of his wins.
He also partnered the Joe Pride-trained sprinter to a gutsy third in the Group Two Yellowglen Stakes (1200m) last Saturday.
“He’s probably the one that has got me into this position,” Reith said.
“He’s been such a good horse to me, and the owners and Joe. If I could salute on Saturday it would probably be one of the biggest thrills I’ve ever had.”
Reith is also sweating on Free Wheeling gaining a start in the Group One Emirates Stakes (1600m).
The Peter Snowden-trained galloper is first emergency but considered a live chance in the race.
The Sydney-based jockey remained in Melbourne after last weekend’s meeting to put Tiger Tees through his paces at trackwork.
Reith returned to Sydney later in the week to ride at Thursday’s Hawkesbury Cup day meeting.
“I rode Tiger on Monday and Tuesday morning and he has pulled up fantastic,” Reith said.
“He’s in great condition. I hope for a little bit of rain and he’ll run a huge race.
“He has never backed up (in seven days) before but the way he feels I see no problems with him doing it on Saturday.”
Triple Group One winner Sea Siren is the favourite for the Patinack on the back of her first-up Manikato Stakes win, but Reith rates Tiger Tees a genuine threat in the weight-for-age contest.
“He handles anything and fights for you,” the jockey said.
“Sea Siren is the main danger, and Buffering, but I think it’s one of the best races of the spring carnival on paper and we’re going to have to be right on our game, which I expect us to be.
“I’m going in there with full confidence and reckon the horse will run his heart out.”