By Glenn Davis
Former New Zealand jockey Michael McNab will be chasing his first city win for an “outside” stable since arriving in Queensland when he partners the Les Kelly-trained Mishani El Lobo at the Gold Coast on Saturday.
Mishani El Lobo will step out for the first time for Kelly, who claimed his first Gold Coast trainers’ premiership last season, in the Matt Dunn Open Handicap (1200m).
The five-year-old was transferred to Kelly from Eagle Farm trainer Chris Anderson following his last start fifth in the QTIS Magic Millions race on January 13.
The son of Commands started his career with Eagle Farm trainer Les Ross before a short stint in North Queensland with John Manzelmann and one start for Eden Petrie.
McNab came to Queensland in June to ride for the Chris Waller stable and celebrated his only metropolitan win for the champion Sydney trainer aboard Irish Optimism at Doomben on July 28.
McNab, 32, was in the top 10 New Zealand jockeys last season after riding more than a half century of winners including seven Stakes victories.
The Group 1 winning rider has ridden for some of New Zealand's biggest stables, including Te Akau, Tony Pike, Nigel Tiley, Graham Richardson and Michael Pitman.
McNab’s Group One win was on smart filly Melody Belle in the Sires’ Produce Stakes at Awapuni in New Zealand last year.
He has two other Gold Coast rides, both for Waller, aboard Veladero in the Benchmark 90 Handicap (1800m) and Jake’s Hill in the Class Two Plate (1400m).
Mishani El Lobo, who drew perfectly in barrier four, has won seven times in 30-starts earning prizemoney of almost $270,000 for owner Mike Crooks.
McNab has had 28 rides since settling on the Gold Coast in June including the Grafton Cup when he rode the Waller-trained Montauk into sixth place behind the Chris Munce-trained First Crush.
In early UBET markets, Mishani El Lobo is an $11 chance behind Newcastle raider Dan Cielo from the Kris Lees stable.
Dan Cielo will be partnered by regular jockey Aron Bullock who has ridden the six-year-old in four of his six starts this campaign.
Dan Cielo was runner up to Tactical Advantage in the July Sprint (1200m) at Randwick last month before a last start fourth to Trekking in a Benchmark race at Randwick on August 11.
Racing Queensland webnews August 16