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Teetan expresses confidence unbeaten Galaxy won’t hit sticky Patch on dirt debut

Karis Teetan expects Galaxy Patch to handle the switch to dirt in Wednesday night’s Class Three Pyramid Hill Handicap (1,200m) as the four-year-old sprinter attempts to stay unbeaten.

A debut winner on his sole start in Australia over 1,100m at Morphettville, Galaxy Patch kept his unblemished record in tact on his first outing in Hong Kong, saluting under Teetan over 1,200m at Sha Tin earlier this month.

Prior to that contest on October 1, the Pierre Ng Pang Chi-trained gelding showed plenty of promise when winning an all-weather trial over 1,050m, and the Mauritian rider has no concerns over the change in surface.

“The trial before his first run showed he handles the all-weather pretty well,” Teetan said. “He’s very versatile, and I’m looking forward to riding him. I think he’s a very smart horse, and if he gets the right run, he’s going to be very competitive.

“There aren’t too many 1,200m races on the turf for him. There was one, but it was too soon after his last run. We thought he trialled pretty well on the all-weather and said let’s give him a go on it.”

Slowly away on his local debut at Sha Tin, Galaxy Patch raced keenly in the opening stages of the contest. Teetan believes the switch in surface may help his mount relax.

“I don’t think he’ll over-race on the dirt. They’ll go fast, and I think it could work out well for him if he gets out and settles in behind a few,” Teetan said.

“He didn’t break too well last time, but I think he’s the kind of horse I have to leave alone, and he’ll do his best when he needs to.”

Galaxy Patch (right) gets the better of Northern Beaches over 1,200m at Sha Tin on October 1.

Galaxy Patch will have to get the better of 11 rivals on Wednesday night, with last-start winner Self Improvement looking for another victory after rising six points in the ratings.

“[Self Improvement] is one of the dangers, but the horse who ran second to him on his last start came out and didn’t perform too well at Happy Valley, so the form line is only OK,” Teetan said.

“At the end of the day, it’s a dirt race, and the form doesn’t usually stand out. I’m just going to ride my horse the way I think will be best.”

Among Teetan’s eight-strong book on Wednesday night is dirt specialist Adefill in the Class Three Shek Uk Shan Handicap (1,650m). A three-time winner over 1,200m, the gelding has only contested this trip once, finishing second to Erimo in May.

“I think he was winning at 1,200m because he was running in lower grade races, and he was just a step better than Class Four,” Teetan said. “I believe 1,650m is his trip, and 1,200m is a bit too quick for him.”

“Physically, he’s also taken a step forward. He’s a really good-looking horse, and he’s only getting better.”

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Teetan has eight wins to his name this season, and once again teams up with More Rice in the Class Four Tiu Yue Yung Handicap (1,650m) after they combined to finish ninth on the all-weather track last month.

“He trialled well last time, and he’s got a nice draw in gate one, where he can get in a good position. He’s an improving horse, and I give him a fair chance.”

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