Mark Zahra

Jockey Mark Zahra (Image: Racing Photos)

Zahra seeks early festive hit-and-run

A refreshed Mark Zahra is planning a festive season hit-and-run at Flemington on Saturday.

The Group 1-winning hoop returns from a month's holiday at The Valley on Friday night, but will ride at just one Saturday meeting before then taking a short break for Christmas.

Zahra, who last rode on Ballarat Cup Day, has spent time holidaying interstate at Byron Bay and the Gold Coast, recharging from a spring that saw him claim the Caulfield Cup.

"I'm only riding this weekend. I spend every year in Perth for Christmas, so I will ride this weekend and spend time in Perth with the family," Zahra said.

"I'll be back sort of for the New Year and from then it's head down and back into it."

Zahra said a trip to the Gold Coast for the Magic Millions would depend on the rides he secures, while he is hoping to slowly build an arsenal for the autumn.

"I've got a good manager and I'm always confident that once the better races and the better horses start coming out that I get some opportunities," he said.

"I'm confident once the races step up I'll be there in the mix, that's for sure." 

"I couldn't ride below 58.5kg, so you've got the start somewhere. I was just happy to get a few rides and just get the eye back in, blow a few cobwebs out and get a few people seeing that I'm back working again," he said.