Trainer Richard Jolly is hoping that Karacatis can turn-the-tables on Essay Raider and record his maiden win at Group 1 level in the 2014 The Goodwood at Morphettville on Saturday.
Karacatis started his autumn preparation with an unlucky eighth place finish behind Lankan Rupee in the Group 1 Oakleigh Plate (1100m) at Caulfield on February 22 and finished fifth in the Group 3 Irwin Stakes (1100m) at Morphettville on April 12 before being beaten convincingly by Essay Raider in the Group 3 McKay Stakes at the same venue a fortnight later.
Jolly told AAP that Karacatis had plenty of excuses for his defeat in the McKay Stakes and remains confident that the son of Hussonet is capable of improving on his fourth place finish in last year’s race.
“He was in the wrong spot,” Jolly said of Karacatis’ defeat in The Goodwood.
“I didn’t want him as close as he was and he was on the inside and probably not in the right part of the track on the day and the winner was.
“Essay Raider swooped down the middle, but late in the race Karacatis really hit the line well.
“Last year he got beaten a length and I’d probably say he’s going as well this time in.
“It’s a similar type of race, so he’s definitely a live chance.
“It’s a very hard race to win, you need to draw the right gate and to be in the right spot, but he’s definitely one of the live chances in it.”
Karacatis made his racing debut in 2011 and worked his way through the grades as a three-year-old before making his debut at Group level during the 2013 Adelaide Autumn Racing Carnival with a narrow second behind General Truce in the Group 3 McKay Stakes (1100m) and a fourth place finish in The Goodwood.
The five-year-old scored his maiden black type win in the Listed W H Wylie Handicap (1100m) at Morphettville on September 21 and performed well in three starts in Melbourne at the end of the year; finishing fourth in the Group 2 Yellowglen Stakes (1200m) at Flemington on Victoria Derby Day and an unlucky seventh in the Emirates Airline Handicap at the same venue a week later before scoring an all the way victory in the Listed Christmas Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on Boxing Day.
Jolly will be chasing his second Group 1 win in as many weeks after taking out the South Australian Derby with Kushadasi last weekend.