Comeback jockey Nathan Day has been rewarded for his recent good form with the key ride on veteran Steel Zip at Eagle Farm.
Nine-year-old Steel Zip is having his major lead-up to the $1 million Magic Millions QTIS race in the Buffering Quality at Doomben on Saturday.
The Buffering carries a wild card to the Magic Millions race day but Steel Zip, the winner of to $935,000 in prize money, is already assured a start on January 14 at the Gold Coast.
He ran third in last year’s QTIS race behind the champion Buffering and trainer Pat Duff has had it as his main summer aim for several months.
Steel Zip resumed with a second to smart sprinter Straturbo over 1050m at Doomben two weeks ago.
“Obviously the 1050 metres was too short for him last time but he did get home just as we expected,” Duff said.
“Steel Zip is an old marvel. People keep asking me when he will be retired and I honestly say I don’t know.”
“He will let me know when he is sick of racing but he still seems to be thriving. Maybe when he retires I will too.”
Duff said he was more than happy to stick with Day.
“Nathan rode Steel Zip perfectly last time and he is getting right back into the city action now,” Duff said.
Day was a star apprentice in the 1990s before retiring 10 years ago and going into a fast food business.
He returned to racing two years ago and after riding 58 winners last season, mainly at the provincial tracks, he has re-established himself in the city.