Family get huge thrill from Riverton Cup win

By Jonny Turner

A brilliant ride continued for the Reidie family when Macandrew Aviator dug deep to win the Riverton Cup in a thrilling finish at Ascot Park on Saturday.

The five-year-old got his nose in front to edge out Southland’s star pacer Pembrook Playboy after the pair fought out an epic home straight battle in the $20,000 feature.

Macandrew Aviator is just the second horse bred and raced together by Southland Vet Megan Tutty, her brothers Jamie and Andrew Reidie and their father Mark Reidie.

They also brought in the Kiwi Connection Syndicate ahead of what has been a journey that has continued to get more and more exciting over summer.

“He is only the second horse we have bred, second we have raced and he’s obviously the best one,” Tutty said.

The breeding of the emerging pacer can be directly linked to Tutty’s work as an equine vet.

Macandrew Aviator is by Panspacificflight, who stands via frozen semen at Macca Lodge where Tutty worked over several breeding seasons.

She acquired her pacer’s dam, Arts Mistress, through trainer Murray Brown who she worked for in her first experience in harness racing as a teenager.

“We got the mare off Murray Brown and Cleland Murdoch and they were really excited for us, so that was really cool.”

“Murray was the one that got me started in harness racing, so it is pretty cool that he is part of this too.”

Tutty’s Riverton Cup win was reward for the work she does with a huge number of standardbreds across Southland through the VetSouth vet clinic.

The breeder-owner unashamedly admitted standardbreds are her passion.

“We have just got to the end of the breeding season, it felt like we bred a lot of mares this year though I am not sure how the numbers compare to other years.”

“We do a lot of racehorses as well, that always keeps us busy.”

“Standardbreds are my passion, so that always helps with work as well.”

A pinpoint drive continued the excellent association Craig Ferguson has developed with Macandrew Aviator.

Ferguson found the one-one for the pacer early in the race before taking him to the lead in the middle stages.

The victory continued Kirstin Barclay’s outstanding record in the Riverton Cup, completing a hat-trick of wins for the trainer.

Barclay and former training partner Tank Ellis produced Paddyproudfoot to win in 2019 and U May Cullect to win in 2020.

Adding to an already outstanding result, the trainer drove Love On The Rocks into third placing behind Macandrew Aviator.

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