Toughest challenge yet awaits Watch Out at Riccarton

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  • August 09, 2023
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By Paul Vettise, LOVERACING.NZ News Desk

Promising mare Watch Out will face the sternest test of her brief career when she steps out in Rating 80 company at Riccarton on Wednesday.

The John and Karen Parsons-bred, owned and trained daughter of Highly Recommended has won three of her four starts and will bid to further her record in the Hoteliers Challenge Handicap (1400m).

Watch Out is one of three runners on the middle day of the Grand National carnival for the Balcairn-based husband and wife team, with Rainman to contest the Haase Marshal Drainage (2200m) and Epilogue to run in the 3F At West Fitzroy Maiden (1600m).

“We’re going to the races with three horses that we think can all go well,” Karen Parsons said.

Watch Out has impressed with her early progress after she had been unbeaten in three consecutive trials with Gosen Jogoo in the saddle.

“Gos rode he at the trials and he always says that he told us she’s special,” Parsons said.

“She’s got a bit to go yet, if she can do the job or run in the first three with a good run, and she’s drawn one, then she’s starting to step up.”

Watch Out was a debut winner on the synthetic track at Riccarton in June and then overcame an interrupted run and a lost plate to score again at Timaru nine days later.

She then finished a close third at Ashburton before returning to the all-weather track to post a runaway win at the shortest of odds.

“We’re very happy with her and she’s been working well so we’ll see just whether we’ve got the luck on our shoulder on not, you always need that,” Parsons said.

“As I keep saying and I’ve told John, she’s been well-placed.”

Watch Out is a daughter of the Falkirk mare Arietta, who won eight races from the Parsons stable, including the Listed Canterbury Breeders’ Stakes (1400m) and finished third at Listed level in the New Zealand Bloodstock Airfreight Stakes (1400m) and the Wairarapa Thoroughbred Breeders’ Stakes (1600m).

All three of Arietta’s foals to race have been successful, with her first Kandhu a two-time winner by Sepoy while Sweynesse filly La Bella Nera has won three of her eight starts.

She also has a two-year-old son of Time Test and is in foal to King Of Comedy.

Tina Comignaghi will be aboard Watch Out while Joe Doyle has been booked for stablemates Rainman and Epilogue.

Pins gelding Rainman showed he was close to claiming the ninth victory of his career when a last-start second behind Proserve, who he will meet 1.5kg better off.

“We’re very happy with him and with a good rider on I am really hopeful with him,” Parsons said.

Epilogue has placed in two of her last three appearances and the step up to 1600m is expected to ideally suit the Wrote four-year-old.

“John has said that all along and the owners are keen to see her get over a bit more ground,” Parsons said. – LOVERACING.NZ News Desk

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