Abernethy and White seeking CD success

By Joshua Smith, Harness News Desk

Northern horsemen Jay Abernethy and Matthew White will once again make the long trek down state highway one to support Manawatu Raceway’s Monday meeting, where they will each have a couple of runners.

Abernethy will have a strong contingent in the opening race, with last start runner-up Play Footsie and Littlebitoflove tackling the 2nd Win $1500 Bonus Commences 15th November Handicap Trot (2500m).

“Play Footsie went really well last start,” Abernethy said. :She gets a 30m head start over the others so that should help her because she is normally quick away. Hopefully she can use that to her advantage.

“Littlebitoflove hadn’t raced for over a year and maybe he needed the race (when 7th last start). He was actually working quite well leading into that first race but was just a bit disappointing. Hopefully he just needed that one.”

Last start placegetter Peter Forsberg will be Aberbethy’s other representative in the Doug Bradley Painters Mobile Pace (2000m).

“He always races well down there and the rating band is a lot more suitable for him. It is a lot closer together than what he has been racing at Auckland and Cambridge,” Abernethy said.

Abernethy has formed a strong partnership with Bulls trainer Doug Gale in recent years and will do the steering behind Whitebait Marg and Raging Whitebait for the Manawatu horseman.

“Whitebait Marg won really well on debut, but she finds herself in the toughest race of the day,” Abernethy said.

“That is the way the handicap falls and hopefully she can take the step up. Doug really likes her, but racing against those older, seasoned horses is always hard for a two-year-old. She has got a good draw (1), so with the right trip she should get some of it.

“Raging Whitebait went well (for fourth) first-up. He definitely needed the run, so he should improve off that. With a bit better trip, hopefully he is a lot closer.”

Cambridge trainer Matthew White looks to have a strong chance of collecting a cheque with The Only Decision in the $3K Junior Drivers Championship Commences 15th Nov Mobile Pace (2000m).

The three-year-old gelding has placed in his last three outings and from barrier two, White is hoping the Betting Line gelding can be first past the post on Monday.

“He has placed in his last three starts and has come up with a good draw again. There is no reason why he shouldn’t go close again,” White said.

He will also head south with Thee Old Bomb who is looking for a boost in confidence in the Cartown MG, Foton & Haval Mobile Pace (2000m).

“He has been working well and is second-up so he should strip a bit fitter than he did a fortnight ago,” White said.

“We thought we would take him down there as it is a little bit easier and to get his confidence up a little bit hopefully. He seems well but it still won’t be easy from the outside of the front gate.”

White will also do the steering behind three other horses, including American Maid in the Turbo’s Syndicate Mobile Pace (2000m) for his father Les.

“She carried a flat tyre over the last 500m last start and probably just needed the run a bit too,” he said.

“It is a similar field again and I think Dad is pretty happy with her.”

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