Waves Rides Back Into Melton

21 March 2024 | Adam Hamilton
Catch A Wave and Kate Gath.

Catch A Wave and Kate Gath. Photo by Pacepix/Club Menangle

A MONTH ago, Andy Gath feared his star pacer Catch A Wave was facing a long stint on the sidelines.

Now he’s buzzing about his return to the racetrack at Melton on Saturday night.

It was feared the 2023 Miracle Mile winner and millionaire pacer had badly injured a leg, maybe even broken a pastern, after finishing second in the Geelong Rocket on February 23.

It derailed his Miracle Mile defence, but to the surprise of Gath and wife, Kate, an extensive veterinary check of Catch A Wave the following day revealed it was a corn and abscess which caused him to be “very lame” after the Geelong race.

The five-year-old had the corn removed and abscess drained and is now back and firing.

“It was a stressful 24 hours, but it’s all behind us now,” Gath said. “He’s really well and if he gets beaten this week it won’t be because of fitness. He’s raring to go.”

Catch A Wave has drawn the outside of seven runners in the Captain Sandy free-for-all (2240m) on Saturday night.

“It’s never easy, especially from these draws, but it’s not the strongest field,” Gath said.

“We haven’t finalised driving plans because there’s a bit of speed drawn inside him, especially Le Captain, Serg Blanco and maybe even Ideal Escape, if they go forward from six.

“But I’m thinking Kate should go forward and have a look.”

Catch A Wave stormed to stardom just over 12 months ago with his rare Chariots Of Fire/Miracle Mile double.

He’s only managed two wins from 11 starts since, but did go within a whisker of winning the Group 1 Victoria Cup.

“I can understand people saying he’s been a bit disappointing at times, but you need everything to go right when you’re at his level,” Gath said.

Asked whether the corn and abscess is something might have been building over time and troubling Catch A Wave in some of his races, Gath said: “That’s a possibility, but we can’t know for sure.”

There are rich slot races just around the corner and a brilliant win from Catch A Wave on Saturday night would surely raise interest from any slot owners still searching for a runner.

“I’m certainly aware of them (slot races), but all we’re focused on is getting him back to the races and seeing how he goes this week,” Gath said.

Catch A Wave has raced 33 times for 19 wins, six placings and banked $1,280,850.


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