Free To Shine (inside) will be looking to clear maiden company at Awapuni on Saturday. Photo: Race Images
Fresh from a two-day visit to Karaka for the Ready To Run Sale of Two-Year-Olds, Palmerston North trainer Lisa Latta will look to a graduate of last year’s sale to anchor a big team at Awapuni on Saturday.
Latta will produce Lincoln’s Kruz on debut in the Test Assured/Avenue Construction 1300 for three-year-olds, the Kuroshio gelding bought for $150,000 from the Woburn Farm draft at last year’s Ready To Run Sale.
“He’s a first-starter against horses that have won races but we’ll get a good line on him,” Latta said.
Lincoln’s Kruz won his first trial at Foxton in March, beating subsequent debut winner Light Up, but he was put aside after firstly going shin sore then bruising a hoof after he pulled a plate and stood on the toe clip.
In his only trial since, he was a narrow winner at the Foxton trials earlier this month.
“He’s won two trials now and shown us plenty. It’s not an easy starting point but we think a lot of him and this should give us a good line on his ability against his own age.”
Despite coming up against nine race winners, Lincoln’s Kruz opened as a $4.60 second favourite on the TAB’s fixed-odds market, with another Latta-trained maiden Free To Shine longer in the market at $26.
“Free To Shine just keeps improving but again, he’s a maiden against winners. We’d expect him to run well though,” Latta said.
Latta’s other runners at the meeting are Platinum Road, Kellys Inspiration, Love Potion, Johnny Lincoln, Akela Belle, Rex Royale, Lincoln’s Gal, Lincoln Hills and Lincoln Star.
“Platinum Road is a really nice Declaration Of War three-year-old and he’ll really appreciate the step up to 1600m,” Latta said.
“Johnny Lincoln has been knocking on the door. He’s run second in his last two and Lincoln Star should go well too.”
Latta signed for two lots at the Ready To Run Sale, going to $40,000 for a Per Incanto colt out of Can’t Keeper Down through Kilgravin Lodge and outlaying $10,000 on a Pins colt out of Repulse Bay from the same draft.