Autridge sets sights on further Wanganui success

Stephen Autridge
Matamata trainer Stephen Autridge. Photo: Race Images Palmerston North

Stephen Autridge’s last visit to Wanganui was highly successful and he’s looking to go even better on his return to the River City on Saturday.

The Matamata trainer ventured south last month with Caitlyns Wish and Loch Katrine and was rewarded with victory from the former and the stable was narrowly denied a winning double when the latter finished a close second.

“It was near perfect so we’re just going to tighten the screws a bit more and try and get two this time,” Autridge said.

Caitlyns Wish will step out in the Odds Surge Every Race At Wanganui Handicap (1200m) while Loch Katrine has the Property Brokers 3YO (1600m) in her sights.

A daughter of Belardo, Caitlyns Wish followed up her Wanganui success with a strong run to finish runner-up at Pukekohe last Saturday.

“She never really runs badly and she’s continuing to do that,” Autridge said.

“It was a good run the other day in her first start in open company. There’s not much around that really suits here, so that’s why I’m backing her up and appears to be a horse that will handle it no problem.”

Caitlyns Wish has fashioned the tidy record of four wins and five placings from 14 appearances and the four-year-old has posted all of her victories on heavy going.

“Wet tracks obviously suit her and while she’s drawn the outside, it’s only a small field,” Autridge said.

The mare has also displayed good gate speed and further helping her cause on Saturday is the engagement of apprentice Ciel Butler to bring the mare down to a featherweight 52kg.

Loch Katrine has also been out once since her first look at Wanganui where just failed to overhaul the Group 2 Hawkes Bay Guineas (1400m) winner Lantern Way.

“She had nothing go right and it was a pity that she just got beaten,” Autridge said.

The daughter of Ardrossan will be ideally suited to the step up to a mile, having posted her sole victory over the trip in last season’s Listed Champagne Stakes (1600m) at Pukekohe.

Most recently Loch Katrine, who will be ridden by Joe Doyle, suffered an interrupted passage at Rotorua before finishing off for fifth.

“She’s always showed a lot and didn’t have a lot of luck, they were a touch too quick for her over 1400m,” Autridge said.

“If it was 1400m on a heavy track again it would be all right and it will be even better for her over a mile this time.”

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