By Simon Jackson.
Lingfield Park on Saturday continues the countdown to the £1.1million All-Weather Championships Finals with a Fast-Track Qualifier for the lucrative marathon final.
The winner of the two mile 32red.com Conditions Stakes on Saturday is guaranteed a place in the £150,000 All-Weather Marathon Championships Conditions Stakes over course and distance on March 25.
The Class 2 contest has attracted a field of seven runners that includes two from the powerful Charlie Appleby yard that includes last year’s winner Anglophile.
The ultra-consistent five-year-old has won six and placed seven times in 16 starts and hasn’t finished out of the first two in his last eight races that includes finishing a close second in last year’s marathon final.
The entry of Anglophile’s stablemate and Listed race winner Pinzolo gives Appleby a strong hand in the £19,000 contest and the trainer anticipates a bold showing from both of his runners.
“Anglophile has had two creditable runs during this All-Weather Championships and heads to Lingfield in good order,” the Godolphin trainer said.
“He is proven around Lingfield and is an honest campaigner. This will be his third run of the season, so he should qualify for Finals Day win, lose or draw on Saturday, and this will be his final start before Good Friday.
“I thought it was a good performance from Pinzolo last time out [when winning over one mile and six furlongs] at Chelmsford City and I am looking forward to seeing how he gets on over two miles. It’s a quick two miles around Lingfield and, if he is going to get it anywhere, it will be there.
“He has to carry a penalty for his victory in a Listed race but he runs well fresh and is two wins from two starts on an artificial surface. He looks to be in really good nick based on his work at home.
“We have purposely kept Pinzolo back for the All-Weather Championships and, if he can get a soft lead under Adam Kirby, he might take a bit of pegging back.”
Saturday’s seven-race card is preceded by an all-weather card today (Friday). The first race this afternoon is at 12.50pm with the last of the seven races scheduled for 4.10pm.
Read ‘Horse Talk with Simon Jackson’ at London24 for the latest horse racing news.