A stakes winner of only NZ$700 back in New Zealand, Lincoln Road has already shown he was worth a lot more after he scored his second Singapore win from as many starts on Sunday for total earnings that have already exceeded the $70,000 mark.
Ridden by Matthew Kellady, the Swiss Ace four-year-old, who was punted down to $14 favouritism, began smartly from his low draw to take up the running in the $60,000 Class 4 Division 2 race over 1100m on Polytrack, enjoying a fairly soft lead to the point of turn.
But after cornering, win No 2 suddenly looked in serious jeopardy when second-favourite The Cosmos cruised up to him with apprentice jockey Shafiq Rizuan cheekily still sitting pretty while Kellady was desperately trying to get Lincoln Road going again.
But it was the complete opposite that happened. Instead of leaving Lincoln Road stone cold, The Cosmos peaked on his run, incapable of drawing clear, even with Shafiq finally letting rip. Sensing that the tide was turning, Kellady wielded his persuader with renewed vigour as he drove Lincoln Road hard against the rails.
The Comsos did come back to Lincoln Road as the latter drew back on level terms before regaining the lead to restore a neck advantage at the wire. Pure Tactics (Oscar Chavez) ran third more than three lengths away. The winning time was 1min 4.61secs for the 1100m on Polytrack.
Winning trainer Shane Baertschiger said Lincoln Road left him shaking his head when he first cast his eyes on his form, but was glad he has proven him wrong.
“I looked at his form and thought I was in trouble when he first stepped off the plane. He had won only NZ$700, but look what he’s done now,” said Baertschiger.
“He has acclimatised quickly and he has improved so much since we put the blinkers on him in a trial.
“Matty rode him a treat and I knew he would be hard to beat as he still had a lapful under him in the straight. He was very strong to the line.”
Kellady said he was never really worried he was going under even after The Cosmos came coasting alongside.
“I was quietly confident even when the other horse came to me because my horse takes a few strides to wind up. Once he gains full momentum I knew he would just kick away,” said Kellady.
“That’s why he will be even better over 1400m and even longer.”
Lincoln Road is raced by the New Zealand-based Lincoln Farms Stable, a relatively new outfit which has just started investing in horse racing in Singapore. Lincoln’s Excuse (Baertschiger) and Lincoln’s Gold (Bruce Marsh) are two other recent winners.
Courtesy of Michael Lee, Singapore Turf Club News