Tim Clark to partner Mazu in Doomben 10,000

Mazu will have a new rider when he bids to defend his Doomben 10,000 crown with Tim Clark replacing Sam Clipperton on the top-class sprinter.

Clipperton has partnered Mazu in 14 of his 18 starts but has opted to ride at the two-day Scone carnival this week rather than head to Brisbane to maintain his association with the gelding.

“Sam wants to stay here and ride at the Scone meeting,” Mazu’s co-trainer Peter Snowden said.

“He’s got quite a few rides there so Tim Clark will take the ride.”

Mazu hasn’t won since last year’s Doomben 10,000 (1200m) but he has been racing in the best of company, placing in The Everest and Winner’s Stakes in the spring and finishing third behind I Wish I Win and Giga Kick in the T J Smith Stakes.

He had a tough run last start when camping on a hot tempo in the All Aged Stakes and wilting to finish midfield with Snowden subsequently opting to give him a few days rest to recuperate.

“He had a bit of a gut buster there. Things didn’t pan out with the pace, it was a crazy pace,” Snowden said.

“He had four days off to freshen up, he’s back in the stable and he’s done a good couple of bits of work.

“I’m happy with him, he looks great, he’s bright, he’s fresh.”

Mazu is on the third line of Doomben 10,000 markets at $9 with Giga Kick a dominant even-money favourite, ahead of Godolphin three-year-old Aft Cabin.

Apache Cat is the last horse to win the race back-to-back, a feat he achieved in 2008-09.

The Doomben 10,000 was held at Eagle Farm last year but returns to its namesake circuit on Saturday and Snowden expected the tighter-turning course to suit Mazu even better, although he admitted he would love to see some rain.

“Doomben is the perfect track for him,” Snowden said.

“The forecast doesn’t look too good for rain, there is sunshine every day next week which is a bit of a bummer.

“He’s good on the dry but he’s even better on the wet.”

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