Steven Pateman to saddle Christmas Cup runner

He is best known for his prolific success riding over the jumps, so it is no surprise Steven Pateman ‘s first Sydney runner as a trainer will be in a feature staying race.

A dual licence holder for the past four seasons, the Victorian-based Pateman heads to Randwick on Saturday hoping to strike a rain-affected track for his Christmas Cup contender Lion’s Share.

“We are chasing the weather,” Pateman said.

“Back in trip doesn’t suit from two miles to 2400, but she has been racing well on good ground, so the likelihood of a soft track is right up her alley.

“On good ground, she is a top three chance, on a heavy track she is a really good chance of winning.”

Lion’s Share has raced at least once a month since April, winning over 2400 metres at Sandown in August and finishing a last-start fourth in Listed grade at Caulfield.

She briefly lost form early in the season when she had trouble with her feet, but Pateman discovered a novel solution, and she now does all her training barefoot on the beach.

“She had a couple of bad runs there when she had problems with her feet and since then we have taken her shoes off and she hasn’t looked back,” he said.

“She gets her high heels back on the day before she runs and away she goes.”

One of only two jockeys to have won four Grand National Hurdles, Pateman continues to be at the top of his sport with another outstanding season in the saddle last winter.

He combines his seasonal riding commitments with training a boutique team of up to 10 horses, mainly stayers and jumpers, and is enjoying the few months of the year when he doesn’t have to watch his weight.

“I don’t look like a jockey at the moment,” Pateman said.

“I like to have a bit of a break over the summer and on the first of January I get stuck back in.”

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