Ortensia Assigned New Rider For Railway Stakes Run

By: Sarah Fortnum
December 6th, 2011

Ortensia will gain a new rider for her run in the Group 1 Railway Stakes in New Zealand on January 1st next year.

The mare will be ridden by jockey Christian Reith, who will be looking to win his first Group 1 in the race.

“Obviously this is a great opportunity to try to notch my first Group One up,” Reith said.

“I’m just rapt to get the opportunity and I think she’ll be a force to hold out.”

Ortensia won the first Group 1 of her career last start in the $500,000 Winterbottom Stakes at Ascot in Perth.

The six-year-old was put into retirement after her autumn carnival start, however, her owners decided to put her back in work with new trainer Paul Messara in the hope of securing an elusive Group 1 title.

Prior to that the Testa Rossa mare was trained by Tony Noonan.

In-form jockey Craig Williams is Ortensia’s regular jockey, however, his commitments in Japan meant he was unable to follow the horse to New Zealand.

“Obviously Craig Williams got first refusal, he’s done a wonderful job on her, but I was more than happy to trial the horse for Paul when she came back into work,” Reith said.

“The horse was flying when she was coming back and I’m really looking forward to getting the chance on her on race day.

“I’ve only ridden her in those two trials but she felt absolutely awesome.

“I said to Paul `She couldn’t feel any better’, and she’s backed that up with her wins at Flemington and in the Group One in Perth.”

Ortensia has won ten of her 29 career starts and has earned more than $1.4 million in prize money.

The mare will also take part in the Group 1 Telegraph Handicap over 1,200 metres following her Railway Stakes run.

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