Retired jockey Stephen Baster says he has fielded countless messages of support but will not be making a comeback to ride Gold Fields in the All-Star Mile.
Trainer Logan McGill has said he would like nothing more than to have Baster aboard Gold Fields in the $5 million All Star Mile at Caulfield.
Baster, who retired from race riding in November, partnered Gold Fields in his most recent victories at Sale and at Sandown in November in what was the jockey’s final race ride.
Now working in real estate, Baster said he would love to ride Gold Fields, but said the challenge was beyond him.
“I have a great relationship with Logan and I love the horse and would love to ride him, but realistically I don’t think I could do the horse justice,” Baster said.
“The amount of support I have received from people wanting to see me back riding has been tremendous, but I don’t think I can do it.”
The former jockey said his boss at real estate firm McEwing and Partners in Mornington, Dean Phillips, would have given him the day off to ride Gold Fields in the All-Star Mile on March 14, while his wife Melissa, a former jockey, said he should give it a go.
But Baster said his fitness levels had slipped since he last rode and it would take too long to get back into racing trim.
The multiple Group One-winning rider prided himself on his fitness, riding trackwork four times a week while also training for endurance cycling races.
Baster admits he does not miss the early morning starts and the only time he has been to the races since retiring was to take his daughters to the barriers from his home at Mornington to watch the start of a race at his local track.
Now comfortably entrenched working more normal hours, Baster said he would be calling on his new-found clients in a bid to boost Gold Fields’ chances to make the All-Star Mile field.
With 10 of the 15 places in the All-Star Mile decided by public vote, Gold Fields currently fills the 10th spot ahead of the close of voting on February 16.
Article from JustHorseRacing.com.au