Father Lenihan if it’s wet, Master Lincoln if it’s dry, Latta has all bases covered
With a terrible weather forecast, trainer Lisa Latta is tipping Father Lenihan as her best chance for Lincoln Farms at Awapuni on Saturday.
But if the rains don’t arrive, and the conditions stay at today’s dead6, she’ll be leaning towards Master Lincoln instead.
Latta saddles two for Lincoln Farms in the second race, Father Lenihan and Lincoln Star, along with a third runner Platinum Wild Card. But it’s Father Lenihan, having his third run this prep who she fancies most.
“He’s always loved a slow track and even if we get a fair bit of rain I don’t think it will worry him.
“He’s really looking for further than 1400 metres but it could be more like 1600 metres if we get the rain that’s forecast.”
Latta was taken by Father Lenihan’s effort for fourth last Saturday at Trentham behind super impressive stablemate Lincoln Raider.
“I thought it was a huge effort. He drew wide and Robbie (Hannam) had to use him up to ride him up handy.”
Father Lenihan took over 400 metres from home and it was only late that the O’Reilly four-year-old succumbed, still fighting bravely to be only one and a quarter lengths from the winner.
Father Lenihan won his sole race on a slow 9 track and has also won a trial on a heavy 11 - “But he doesn’t really want it heavy.”
In wet conditions, Latta also has a hankering for Platinum Volos in the third race.
The four-year-old Dalghar gelding hasn’t raced since September 8 when he stood in the gates, lost all chance, and was ordered to trial before fronting up again.
He did that, at Waverley on October 16, when the addition of pacifiers and a barrier blanket did the trick.
“Hopefully he jumps out on terms because he has the ability and he likes an off track.”
If the track doesn’t deteriorate as much as expected, Latta says she’d be pretty confident over the chances of Master Lincoln in race eight.
“His jumpout was very good last week, but the track was pretty good there, and he has trained on well since. I just hope it doesn’t get too wet for him as a nice dead/slow is probably what he prefers. I’d be wary if it got wetter than that.
“He will get back from the wide draw and we will look to power over the top of them.”
Manhattan Street, who opens for Lincoln Farms in the first race, has been up a long time, says Latta, but a wetter track on Saturday would help him no end.
“He’s had a bit more spring in his step with the rain around this week.”
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Our runners this week
Tuesday at Waipa
Bush Whacked (not starting).
Friday at New Plymouth
Dreams Of Platinum, Platinum Invador.
Saturday at Awapuni
Father Lenihan, Lincoln Bay, Johnny Lincoln, Lincoln Star, Lincoln Fury.
Sunday at Te Rapa
News in brief
FALLS TO TRIAL: Exciting three-year-old Lincoln Falls will trial at Awapuni next Tuesday in preparation to resume racing at Trentham on December 8. Trainer Lisa Latta says she is very happy with the horse’s progress and he is much more relaxed around the stables this time in.
DERBY DREAM: Trainer Lisa Latta has nominated six Lincoln Farms’ three-year-olds for the $1 million New Zealand Derby at Ellerslie on March 2 - Lincoln Falls, Lincoln Lane, Ajay Lincoln, Lincoln Fury, Lincoln Hanover and Platinum Invador. Latta has also entered 2000 Guineas placegetter Sir Nate.
ANOTHER HIT: Trainer Stephen Marsh is having no luck with Bush Whacked. Marsh will scratch the horse from Waipa on Tuesday, after he drew very wide, and save him for Te Rapa on Sunday. The horse had to be late scratched from New Plymouth earlier this month after hitting himself in the float.
GAL HAD NO FAVOURS: Lincoln’s Gal ran only eighth at Otaki but had no favours. She began awkwardly, settling back, then raced in restricted room passing the 100 metres when runners either side shifted ground.
VOLOS BLOWS IT AGAIN: Platinum Volos did another Chautauqua impersonation when he refused to come out of the gates at Awapuni despite wearing pacifiers and a barrier blanket. The grey will now have to trial on multiple occasions before being allowed to race again.
ALMO OUT FOR SPELL: Almo Street’s much awaited racetrack return, with the aid of a blindfold to help him jump out of the gates, has been put on hold. Trainer Lisa Latta says the normally good trackworker has been decidedly average in his last two gallops and, after nearly a year in work sorting out his problems, is simply over the top.