Berry to stick with Karuta Queen in Melbourne

By: Mark Mazzaglia
February 6th, 2012

Jockey Tommy Berry is to stick with flying filly Karuta Queen when she makes her return to Melbourne on Saturday.

Queanbeyan trainer Neville Layt had to change tact with Karuta Queen’s Autumn program after last Saturday’s Warwick Farm washout.

Karuta Queen was due to return in the Handicap over 1000m  at Warwick Farm but now will resume in the Group 3 $125,000 Rubiton Stakes over 1100m at Caulfield on Saturday and then onto the Group 1 $400,000 Oakleigh Plate at Caulfield on February 25.

Berry, who is number two rider for Gai Waterhouse in Sydney had to give up several mounts at Rosehill this weekend to maintain his association with Karuta Queen.

“I’m missing out on a few of Gai’s in Sydney but she’s going to be going in bigger and better races and the owners have stuck by me quite solid so I’ve got to do the same,” Berry said.

“She [Waterhouse] has always said the whole way along that I can always stick with the filly so I don’t even really have to ask her, I’ve just got to let her know when she’s running and then we work around it.

“If there’s Driefontein or something racing on the same day then it makes it hard because she’s my Golden Slipper mount so I’d have to ride her, but there was no Driefontein so it’s good.”

Berry said he didn’t have a ride in the Group 2 $200,000 Expressway Stakes (1200m), the main race at Rosehill on Saturday and is hoping to pick up some extra rides at Caulfield.

The young Sydneysider said that he had previously ridden some jumpouts for Peter Moody and he has ridden for Mark Kavanagh and Peter Snowden so there might be an opportunity there to pick up another good ride.

“It’s always a great time of the year to find some nice young horses, as I’ve done this year. I rode another nice won on Friday night, Later Gator, so it’s exciting times,” Berry said.

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