Price pins faith in apprentice for Bunbury Cup

Trainer Ross Price has full confidence in Kate Witten and had no hesitation in handing the apprentice her first Bunbury Cup ride on Mycroft this weekend.

For Bunbury-based Witten, winning her home town cup would be the pinnacle of her career to date and reward for her recent good form in the saddle.

The 23-year-old is maximising her opportunities and recently celebrated a milestone when she booted home her first Saturday double at Ascot.

Witten has built a successful partnership with Mycroft, posting two wins from three starts since the bay gelding resumed his campaign in January.

Witten lifted Mycroft to victory over Regal Power at Bunbury and last-start, settled the mare in fourth position before she charged home to win easily.

Regal Power has since franked the form by winning last weekends Listed Lex Piper Stakes (1600m) and is favourite for next month’s WA Derby (2400m).

A runner-up placing to tearaway leader Avidus at Ascot two runs back is the only blemish in an otherwise perfect campaign of racing for Witten and Mycroft.

“She is riding as well as any apprentice,” Price told The Races WA.

“She is not far off becoming a senior rider and only has 2kg left in town.

“What she has done on this horse in her only three rides is to ride him exactly how we have asked her to ride the horse.

“It has shown dividends for two wins and a second, so I wouldn’t be changing at this stage.”

Mycroft, a five-year-old son of Henrythenavigator, has drawn barrier nine.

He is rated a $7 chance with Tabtouch.

Price says he is confident Mycroft will handle a class rise in the Bunbury Cup.

“It’s a test for the first time in open company, but the horse is going really well since we freshened him up,” Price said.

“If he produces what he has over the last three starts he will really, really give a good account of himself.

“He has trained on and seems to be doing everything right, so why not have a throw at the stumps.

“I have no reason to doubt he won’t be running a good race.”

By Julio Santarelli via