By Simon Jackson
The last of the guaranteed qualifying places for the All-Weather Championship finals will be decided at Kempton Park on Monday at a rare afternoon meeting at the Middlesex track.
The Class 2 Follow@BetVictorRacing On Twitter Conditions Stakes concludes the 16 fast-track qualifying races that secure the winner a place on Finals Day at Lingfield on April 18 where trainer Lucy Wadham is targeting the marathon race with Noble Silk.
The consistent five-year-old was second in a two mile Class 2 on his reappearance at Lingfield earlier this month and Wadham believes her charge can go one better over the same distance in Monday’s race that offers prizemoney of £19,000.
“Noble Silk is an intended runner at Kempton Park on Monday,” Wadham confirmed.
“He came out of Lingfield well and is in good form. We were delighted with his performance there and I would say it was his best ever run. It was very pleasing, especially after a long break, and we were as happy as you could be without winning.
“We were pretty confident about him staying two miles as the family seem to stay very well.
“I’m not sure if he prefers the All-Weather to the turf, but it could be that he is a little bit better earlier on in the year. The jury is still out on that, but he is the most beautiful moving horse and does enjoy the surface.
“This race looks slightly more competitive than the last race, but I think the winner [Litigant] looks like a beautiful horse. He had a little bit less luck in running than we did, so it was a good performance to win.”
Meanwile connections of Robin Hoods Bay, winner of the £100,000 coral.co.uk Winter Derby at Lingfield on Saturday, are eyeing a lucrative all-weather double as they target the £200,000 Coral Easter Classic All-Weather Middle-Distance Championship.
“I have trained him for this race, as I have said all the way through. We had a couple of little issues with him earlier on and I just wasn’t able to train him conventionally,” trainer Ed Vaughan said after the six-year old had prevailed by three quarters of a length under Luke Morris.
“I have let him have 10 per cent improvement with each race. This was the day for him and now we will have a crack at the Good Friday race.”
All-Weather Championships Finals Day
Lingfield Park April 18, 2014
13.45 £50,000 coral.co.uk All-Weather Championships Apprentice Handicap (1m 4f)
14.20 £150,000 32Red.com All-Weather Fillies’ & Mares’ Championships Conditions Stakes (7f)
14.55 £150,000 32Red All-Weather Three-Year-Old Championships Conditions Stakes (7f)
15.30 £150,000 32Red Casino All-Weather Marathon Championships Conditions Stakes (2m)
16.05 £150,000 bookmakers.co.uk All-Weather Sprint Championships Conditions Stakes (6f)
16.40 £150,000 ladbrokes.co.uk All-Weather Mile Championships Conditions Stakes (1m)
17.20 £200,000 Coral Easter Classic All-Weather Middle-Distance Championships Cond’ Stakes (10f)
Read Horse Talk with Simon Jackson each day at London24 for the latest horse racing news.