Blake Shinn to replace James McDonald in the Tatts Tiara 2024

Blake Shinn did not last long on the Tattersall’s Tiara interchange bench with the star Melbourne hoop called up to replace the indisposed James Mcdonald aboard C’Est Magique.

Shinn thought his Group 1 season had come to a premature end on Thursday, when Mike Moroney scratched his original mount Coeur Volante from the $700,000 event.

But he was quickly snapped up by connections of second favourite C’est Magique after McDonald was forced to withdraw from the meeting.

McDonald was hospitalised after complaining of abdominal pains midway through Wednesday’s Warwick Farm meeting and withdrew from the Eagle Farm meeting the following day after being diagnosed with gallstones.

McDonald was discharged from hospital on Thursday, but it is not known when he will next be seen in the saddle with the 32-year-old already booked in for some time off after Saturday’s meeting.

C’est Magique was just one of several leading chances McDonald was booked to partner at Eagle Farm, now also forced to be replaced aboard favourites Depth Of Character (Race 2), Millane (Race 3) and All That Pizzazz (Race 9), plus second elect Thalassophile (Race 5).

McDonald has enjoyed one of the greatest seasons by an Australian-based jockey.

He has ridden 113 nationwide, 83 of them Sydney, which has him 10 wins clear Nash Rawiller in the Sydney jockeys’ premiership with just over a month of the season to go, while he has ridden an additional 25 internationally.

His mounts have accumulated a staggering AU$55,524,715 for the season.

Cox Plate hero Romantic Warrior has been responsible for more than $13m of that, having carried McDonald to five of his 19 Group 1 wins for the season in three different countries.

McDonald’s 2023/24 Group 1 haul takes his career tally to 98 but he will need to wait until next season to resume his pursuit the century with the $1m Winx Stakes at Randwick on August 24 the next Group 1 to be held in Australia.

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