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Top jockeys unite to scream blue murder

JOCKEY Luke Nolen is famous for wearing the salmon and black spotted silks of the iconic Black Caviar.

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But he is thrilled to be donning his beloved ‘‘Big V’’ of Victoria for the UBET Origin Jockey Series that gets started at Doomben on Saturday.

And Nolen shares a common passion with all Queenslanders — he would love to see the heavily favoured NSW get knocked off their perch as defending champions.

The Origin Jockey Series concept returns for a third year in a cleverly condensed package as part of the push for Queensland to further own the mantle as the home of summer racing in Australia.

Jockeys representing Queensland, NSW, Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania, New Zealand and the World All-Stars will compete over two races at Doomben today, two races at Doomben tomorrow and a further two races on the Sunshine Coast on Sunday.

Some of the hoops that will do battle on turf got behind the wheel of go-karts at Eagle Farm yesterday where their competitive instincts could not be reined in.

Nolen guided Black Caviar to her 13th-straight win at the BTC Cup at Doomben in May 2011 and he returns again with state pride on the line.

“I’d love to beat NSW. They say the only good thing to come out of there is the Hume Highway so hopefully they won’t trouble us this weekend,’’ Nolen said.

“It’s really good to be wearing the Big V. I was born in Victoria and you are afforded few opportunities to represent your state or country in our game so it means a little bit to get that chance.’’

Michael Rodd has made a brief trip back from Singapore to represent NSW, which will cause problems at home with his wife Cara hailing from Queensland, where the hoop did his apprenticeship under trainer Brian Guy.

He is sick of hearing about Queensland’s domination of the rugby league interstate ­series and wants NSW to retain this particular Origin trophy that he won with Tye Angland last year.

“The amount of people that keep rubbing it in (about the football) … I keep getting reminded about it,’’ Rodd said.

“I’d like to do something for NSW because I bleed blue. Hopefully we can give Brad Fittler and the boys a bit of inspiration for next year. If they need a halfback, I’ll chuck the No. 7 on too.’’

Queensland-based Kiwis Larry Cassidy and Damian Browne will represent New Zealand, with Cassidy joking that their pre-race ritual may cause a ruckus in the jockey room.

“We might do the haka to get the juices flowing,’’ Cassidy said.

THE CONTENDERS

December 8-10

Qld: Jim Byrne and Matt McGillivray

NSW: Tye Angland and Michael Rodd

VIC: Luke Nolen and Clare Lindop

TAS: Craig Newitt and Brendon McCoull

SA: Dwayne Dunn and Jamie Kah

NZ: Damian Browne and Larry Cassidy

All-Stars: Robbie Fradd and Mark Du Plessis

THE RACES

ROUND 1

TODAY: Doomben

Class 2 Plate (Set Weights) 2200m and Class 1 Plate (Set Weights) 1350m

ROUND 2

TOMORROW: Doomben

Class 6 Plate (Set Weights) 2000m and Class 2 Plate (Set Weights) 1600m

ROUND 3

SUNDAY: Sunshine Coast Turf Club

Class 3 Plate (Set Weights) 1400m and Class 1 Plate (Set Weights) 1200m

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