Hugh Bowman unavailable for Winx return after picking up suspension
Preparations for Winx's eagerly anticipated return at Randwick next month hit a snag on Saturday when regular jockey Hugh Bowman picked up a ban in New Zealand that will rule him out of partnering the wondermare.
Winx is scheduled to start off in the Group 2 Apollo Stakes on February 17, but will need a new partner for the first time since September 2015, with Bowman out of action.
It was a 48 hours to forget for the Longines 2017 World's Best Jockey, who incurred an 11-meeting suspension at Warwick Farm on Friday that runs from February 4 to February 14. He then picked up a 12-day suspension at Ellerslie on Saturday that will leave him on the sidelines when Winx makes her comeback.
Speaking to the New Zealand press, Bowman ruled out an appeal, and said: "I won’t be appealing it. I expect her [Winx] to start as planned on the 17th and I won’t be riding her, which will be a strange experience. I don’t know who will be next in line but Chris [Waller] will work something out."
Bowman had been aboard for 19 consecutive victories on Winx, a run that included her record-equalling three Cox Plates.
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