9 Mar 2011

Ritchie family has strong hand in Auckland Cup

8:52 am on 9 March 2011

Auckland's Ritchie horse-training family are hoping to break their Auckland Cup duck of more than 60 years when they line up two of the favourites for this afternoon's million-dollar race at Ellerslie.

The great Merv Ritchie missed out by a nose with his great stayer Terrific in 1967, and two more generations of trainers in the family have yet to saddle up an Auckland Cup winner.

Merv Ritchie's son Frank is represented by the favourite Showcause, the winner this season of the New Zealand, City of Auckland and Avondale Cups, while grandson Sean trains the third favourite Roi de Jeu.

A mainly fine day is forecast for Auckland, and the Cup starts at 5.52 this afternoon.