IF every story had a happy ending, one of racing's Mr Nice Guys would win the inaugural running of the 2,400-metre International Vase at Sha Tin today. Queenslander Geoff Allendorf returns to the scene of some of his triumphs today in a fairytale story that involves an old mate and a horse that came close enough to glory in the Melbourne Cup. Trainer Royce Dowling is a man of his word as the now Sydney-based Allendorf knows very well. He was sitting in his Macau apartment just after starting a three-month winter stint there when the phone rang. It was Dowling, for whom Allendorf had ridden Double Take in several races in Sydney. Dowling, a fine handler who has no trouble making friends, had said to Allendorf months ago that he was thinking of the International Vase for Double Take. 'If we get the nod, you'll ride him,' said Dowling. Greg Childs rode Double Take into fourth place in the Melbourne Cup and then to victory in the New Zealand Cup. But Dowling was true to his word and when Allendorf picked up the 'phone it was to hear confirmation of his engagement. 'I never doubted it because he is a straight up bloke and really good to ride for. Now all we have to do is win,' said Allendorf earlier this week. It would be a dream come true if Allendorf, who rode for four years in Hong Kong, could return to Sha Tin and win what looks to be the best of the three International Races. Allendorf had success in Hong Kong where he was stable jockey to Bruce Hutchison and then moved across to Macau where he was champion jockey for two seasons. He then returned to Sydney to be with his family but did not find it easy to get top rides. 'It is very competitive, most people know that. I was kept fairly busy but really top opportunities are fairly hard to come by. Double Take was good for me there and I certainly hope he'll be good for me on Sunday,' said Allendorf, who can be assured of a warm welcome in the weighing room today. Trainer Bruce Hutchison legs Allendorf up in an earlier race today and said: 'It's a pleasure to give him a ride. We had some good times together here and they don't come any better than him. It was a pleasure to work with him here and I just wish it could have gone on longer.' And there will be plenty of his Macau fans rooting for an Allendorf success today. The entire Sha Tin card is being simulcast to Taipa and bet on there and Allendorf, who rode a treble at Taipa last week and was in action there again yesterday, will attract plenty of loyal local support. It is usually seen as a comedown to move across to Taipa from the glamour of Hong Kong racing but Allendorf had no complaints. 'You don't compare the two. But Macau was good to me in the early days and it was something to remember winning the title there. I was fortunate in that a lot of trainers gave me good support and I was always getting the rides. 'And that's what it always comes down to. If you haven't got the horses you won't be winning anything.' It has been just like old times for Allendorf at Sha Tin over the past five days. 'Yes, the memories tend to come back. There's a real atmosphere about Sha Tin whether it's in the morning or on raceday. And a lot of familiar faces, too. I have found it really enjoyable.' And it's possible that what will almost certainly be his final ride at Sha Tin could be a winning one. 'I know he'll run well. It is asking quite a lot to have a crack at the Melbourne Cup, go back across the Tasman and win the New Zealand Cup and then come here for a race like this. 'But I will say that if any horse can do that, then it is this fellow. The travelling takes nothing out of him at all and he was in great shape when I rode him during the week. 'There should be plenty of pace on and that will suit us. I hope there isn't really heavy rain and a soft track because he does go better on top of the ground. 'It will be a good race because there are some quality horses in it. In this game if you don't hope for or expect too much, then you're not disappointed. 'Let's just say that I'm keeping my fingers crossed and if it happens, well it will certainly be some party.' It would be one worth going to.