Runner-up in the 2017/2018 Sydney Jockeys’ Championship Blake Shinn and reigning South African champion Lyle Hewitson are the two new faces to join the Hong Kong riding ranks.
The Hong Kong Jockey Club announced their licensing decisions on Thursday afternoon, June 6, with Shinn and Hewitson both granted part-season Jockey’s licences for the 2019/2020 racing season to commence on 15 July 2019 and to expire on 29 February 2020, both dates inclusive.
Shinn (32 years) has ridden 1591 winners – including the 2008 Melbourne Cup on Viewed – since commencing his riding career in 2003 and is currently ranked 13th on the IFHA LONGINES World’s Best Jockey table and has finished in the top 20 in each of the past two years.
Shinn has been riding in a rich vein of form after a successful comeback from a broken neck he suffered in August last year, with 53 winners this season at a strike rate of almost 21 per cent.
The past 4 racing seasons has seen the emergence of South African Jockey Lyle Hewitson (21 years) who is attempting to win back to back South African Jockeys’ titles.
Of particular significance was that with the 184 wins he achieved in the 2017/2018 season, he became the first Apprentice Jockey to win the South African Jockeys’ title in 47 years, repeating the achievement of former Champion South African jockey Michael Roberts.