Blake Shinn gets his pants pulled down again

If you ever want to teach your promising apprentice jockey how not to ride in a Group 1 race plonk her down and take her through the running of yesterday’s VRC Derby, and get her to watch Blake Shinn on Tangled the whole way through.

It is a slaughter job of epic proportions.

These are the horse’s colours.


This is how the debacle unfolds.

Tangled starts from a middle barrier and Shinn pings him out of the machine.


Approaching the winning post for the first time Shinn is easing Tangled to the lead.


All he needs to do now is slide across to the rail and then look for some cover. If he does he will have the favorite Ace High (in the orange, about 3rd near the fence) behind him and will get a gun run throughout.

But for reasons known only to the rider Shinn doesn’t take Tangled to the lead, he eases and the colt is stuck out in no man’s land on the turn out of the straight.


Approaching the back street Shinn changes his mind and goes forward again.


Tangles draws three-quarters of a length in front but just as the colt looks certain to cross Shinn eases again.


Tangled of course starts pulling, which is no surprise given the go/stop, stop/go. go/stop tactics Shinn has employed on the immature 3-year-old in the first 1200m of the race.


Finally Shinn settles the colt and finds a spot and it’s a beauty, fifth one off the fence. Tangled is back on the bit and cruising.


At about the 800m mark Ace High comes around the field. Ocean’s Fourteen goes with the favorite and pushes it four wide.

Shinn should go just ahead of them but doesn’t. He just sits there and suddenly Tangled is in a firm pocket.


The field packs, Shinn has to check Tangled, he goes up in the irons and suddenly the colt gets shuffled back back 8th and has a solid wall of horses in front of it.


They round the turn and Luke Nolen on Oceans Fourteens puts his foot to the floor and races around the outside to challenge the leaders.

Ace high is on his outside and travelling.

Tangled follows Oceans Fourteen through.


Then Shinn has a brain explosion.

Instead of following Oceans Fourteen through and peeling off its heels he ducks back to the inside and straight into a wall of traffic.

God knows what is trying to do; there is never any run there.


Tangled of course goes straight up the arses of the horses in front, and Shinn has to check and ease, then he eases back further and attempts to come around Ace High’s heels.


Ace High accelerates, creating a space for Tangled to get out and Shinn takes it, but in doing so he takes the running of Ben Melham on the fast accelerating Aberro (green and red in the picture below, between Tangles and the horse in the blue and white).


Tangles takes a few strides to accelerate, and in that brief moment Melham has driven through and re-claimed his running line.

He pushes Tangled back into a pocket


Meanwhile Ace High is off and gone.

Tangled was in front of that horse at the 800m, and only a length and a half behind it just 20 metres ago but suddenly it has been smashed, and is now four lengths behind the fast flying Aces High and Shinn is trapped in a pocket with nowhere to go.


Ace High hits the lead.

Tangled is now 5-6 lengths behind and Shinn is still caught behind a wall of horses.

Its too late now for Tangled.


The colt works through the line beautifully, but is still running into traffic when it reaches the like hard held with Shinn yet again high in the irons.


Shinn has absolutely slaughtered his mount and ruined the colt’s owners Derby dreams.

It is the worst ride of the carnival so far, although many more are sure to follow over the next three days, and Frankie Dettori’s ride in The Cup will almost certainly be among their number.

Bookmakers are betting 33 to 1 about Blake Shinn ever sitting on Tangled’s back ever again.

The price is well under the odds.