Larry Lincoln noses out hot favourite Our Madiba at Albion Park.

Al right on the money as Larry Lincoln pulls off $12.80 upset at Albion Park

If trainer Al Barnes’ tip that Larry Lincoln was a big winning chance tonight wasn’t enough, his Facebook post just an hour before the race showed how confident he was.

Barnes told in his preview that Larry was “flying, busting to win a race and I reckon this is his chance.”

And on his Facebook page Barnes posted a picture of the horse, sporting his big white blaze, letting people know he was trying to set up a syndicate to buy him from Lincoln Farms.

Barnes was very bullish before the race given how unlucky Larry had been in his recent racing and predicted the better quality field, and faster tempo, would actually help him.

And so it proved when, despite being sent out only fifth favourite at $12.80, the little warrior was saved for one run and used his high speed to down the hot favourite Our Madiba by a nose.

“I’m rapt,” Barnes said. “We love that little horse, he’s such a gentleman. I love him that much I’m trying to set up a syndicate to buy him.

“He’s sound and honest and he’ll only get better when they go quicker.”

Hayden Barnes brings back Larry Lincoln after his terrific win tonight. PHOTO: Dan Costello.Hayden Barnes brings back Larry Lincoln after his terrific win tonight. PHOTO: Dan Costello.But Barnes admitted while Larry ranged up powerfully three wide to take a narrow lead on straightening for home, he wasn’t confident that he’d hang on.

“Hayden was first to pull at the 600 and I thought he’d gone too early and would run out of puff. But Larry kept trying and dug in deep.

“Hayden was rapt that he finally got a decent trip and he drove him a treat. He went straight back on to a helmet, instead of going forward.

“Larry’s been desperately unlucky in his last few runs but tonight he got a good trip in a small field, and he must have run a low 26 in that last quarter.”

The four-year-old Sweet Lou gelding clocked a slick 1:58.2 for the 1660 metres, a mile rate of 1:54.6, and despite a brutal opening quarter of 26.8, the leader ran the closing 800 in 55.1 and 400 in 26.8.

It was Larry Lincoln’s sixth win for Lincoln Farms’ owners John and Lynne Street since they sent the horse to Queensland and his A$7818 purse tonight took his earnings in the state to A$33,964.

Hustler hit a knee

Northview Hustler couldn’t make it back-to-back wins later in the night but had an excuse for finishing at the rear.

Barnes said his son Hayden reported the horse was bolting turning for home and he thought he was going to run straight past his rivals.

“But he got on himself and gave his knee a good whack - he was probably just going too quick for himself.

“Hayden did the right thing and eased him down.”

Barnes said foot trouble was often the cause of horses getting on a knee and the Hustler was continually worried by corns and infections.

“I’ll get him right and he’ll be back fine in two weeks. Hayden said he actually felt really good in the warm-up, as good as he’s ever been.”

Our runners this week: How our trainers rate them

Ray Green

Ray’s comments

Friday night at Auckland

Race 1: Obadiah Dragon

“He’s the lowest rated in the field, so it will be tough for him, but he’s racing really well. He just doesn’t need any bad luck.”

Race 4: Lincoln La Moose

“You won’t see the best of him on Friday. It’s his first race since April and he’ll definitely need the run.”

Race 6: My Copy

“He’s no champion but he’s very honest and is always capable of finishing in the money. He only needs a fair crack at them.”

Race 7: Tyson

“You can forget about that debut run, it was a non-event for him the way the race panned out. He got way too far back and would need to have clocked ridiculous times to get into it. He has speed and feels like a nice horse but he’s very inexperienced. I wouldn’t expect him to round the others up but he won’t be disgraced.”

Race 7: Lincoln Lou

Update: Scratched on vet’s advice

“He’s a very nice colt. He’s a lot stronger this time in and he could develop into a serious horse. If he repeats his last run, he’ll be hard to beat. I think he might have the wood on Sugar Ray. He has better manners and probably a bit more speed too.”

Race 7: Sugar Ray Lincoln

“He won comfortably last time despite being three wide for much of the last lap and four wide turning for home. He’s a very good colt. There’s not much between him and Lincoln Lou.”

Race 9: Commander Lincoln

“He’s as honest as they come, he’d die for you, but he lacks a yard of sharp speed to be a serious horse. He has a draw upgrade and drops in class but things have to pan out for him.”

Mark Dux

Mark Dux’s comments

Friday night at Albion Park

Race 8: Captain Nemo
6.33pm NZ time

“It’s not an easy race and, from an average draw, we’ll drive him quietly again so he’ll be at the mercy of the tempo. If he gets the right trip, I could see him hitting the line well and sneaking into the money but after this run to tighten him up he’ll be all set to go, close to winning.”

Les Harding

Les Harding

Saturday night at Port Pirie

Race 5: Beaudiene Rocknroll
10.02pm NZ time

“I’m very happy with him and confident he’ll run a top race but it’s hard to predict how he’ll measure up given this is a big step-up in class compared with the horses he has raced against for his last two wins.”

Dan Costello Race Photography