Mitchell Pateman has picked up a top ride aboard Holy Snow in the $1 million Group 1 Kingston Town Classic (1800m) at Ascot on Saturday.
The in-form hoop said he is thrilled to be associated with the Darren Weir-trained gelding, rated a $13 chance in WA’s weight-for-age feature.
“I’m just thrilled to pick up a handy ride,” Pateman.
“And to be associated with Darren Weir is special.
“I certainly wasn’t expecting it and it’s a big surprise.”
Pateman, riding in the best form of his career, said he is relieved to finally have the chance of securing his first Group 1 victory after confusion arose yesterday.
Pateman believed he had been booked to partner Perth-owned star and last-start Group 1 winner, Trap For Fools, before Damien Oliver was confirmed as the rider.
“I reckon in the space of five hours I had three rides in the race,” Pateman said.
“I’ve gone from Elegant Blast to Trap For Fools to Holy Snow.
“And before all that I was on Scales Of Justice.
“I’m just thankful to have a ride in the race now.”
Holy Snow confirmed his spot in the Kingston Town field after successfully passing a barrier test at Lark Hill on Monday.
He was ordered back to trials by stewards after he proved unruly behind the gates and missed the start in a Belmont heat last week.
The Fastnet Rock four-year-old comes into the Kingston Town after running on strongly for second in the Sandown Stakes (1500m) in Melbourne.
It was Holy Snow’s first start for Weir after he won the Group 2 Autumn Stakes (1400m) at Caulfield in February for previous trainer, Mick Price.
“I would have thought he has to be some chance and is not impossible,” Pateman said.
“I would think that Weiry wouldn’t be here wasting his time if he wasn’t a hope.”