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Taupo winner O'Naturelle set for Canterbury Belle Stakes
13 Sep 2016
Waikato trainers Jamie Richards, left, and Stephen Autridge are all smiles after their success with Risque in the One ...
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Waikato trainers Jamie Richards, left, and Stephen Autridge are all smiles after their success with Risque in the One Thousand Guineas at Riccarton.

One of the better fillies in training with Matamata horsemen Stephen Autridge and Jamie Richards is lining up in the $50,000 Canterbury Belle Stakes at Riccarton on Saturday.

O'Naturelle, who won her only start impressively at Taupo on August 19, is held in high regard by her trainers.

"She won two trials before winning at Taupo . . . she looks to be quite a talent," Richards said.

O'Naturelle has the bloodlines to make the grade being by O'Reilly from Naturo, who won three of six starts.

Naturo competed in the Group I One Thousand Guineas (fifth), Group I Manawatu Sires Produce Stakes (fourth), Group II Matamata Breeders' Stakes (first), Group III Highview Stakes (first) and Listed Sarten Memorial Stakes (second).

Autridge and Richards are also starting Play For Time in the Canterbury Belle. She finished second in a maiden 1200m at Ashburton (August 26) at her only start.

"She's got a lovely pedigree and needs to get black type," Richards said.

He and Autridge saddled Windborne to win the Canterbury Belle 12 months ago. She didn't contest the One Thousand Guineas, which was won by stablemate Risque. 

Imperium and Carmenize are others in the four-horse team Autridge and Richards are taking to the Riccarton meeting. 

A 5-year-old Encosta De Lago gelding, Imperium will launch a new campaign in a rating 75 1400m. He is nominated for the $225,000 NZ Cup on November 12.

His two trials in this preparation have yielded a fourth and a seventh at Te Teko in August.

"We have liked him for a while but he has let us down a couple of times," Richards said.

Imperium (two wins) is out of the 2001 Melbourne Cup winner Ethereal.

Maiden galloper Carmenize returned to racing at Ashburton on August 26. She led until fading to fifth in the last 150m.

Michael McNab will ride O'Naturelle, Imperium and Carmenize on Saturday, while Alysha Collett is engaged for Play For Time.

Autridge and Richards have eight horses based at the Riccarton stables of Shane Kennedy and Anna Furlong.

The Waikato training partnership have nine horses accepted for the Te Rapa meeting on Wednesday.

 Jamie Searle

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