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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 www.lincolnfarms.co.nz 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 Cambridge

Race 3: Lincoln Lou
6.39pm

“He’s a beautiful little horse and I’m looking forward to seeing him run. It’s hard to know how good he is, or how far he’ll go, but I guess we’ll find out on Friday. He’s the one to beat from the draw. If he doesn’t win, he won’t be far away.”

Race 5: Commander Lincoln
7.31pm

“I won’t be holding my breath. He tries hard enough but he lacks a bit of high speed.”

Race 8: Onyx Shard
8.55pm

“It’s two and a half months since she last raced, and she didn’t grow as much as I thought she would, but I’m expecting her to go a good race. Her last two trials have been good and she’s pulled up well.”

Race 8: Obadiah Dragon
8.55pm

“He’ll need a good trip from five but he’s not out of it. He went a good race last time at Cambridge and would be as equal a chance as Onxy Shard.”

Race 8: Beaudiene Rocknroll
8.55pm

“It’s heart-in-the-mouth stuff with him until they let them go but he should step away this time. Zac (Butcher) said the gate went particularly slowly before that race and that’s why he got impatient. I thought he did well to recover for third. If he made the front, where he goes best, he’d be hard to beat.”

Race 9: Frisco Bay
9.22pm

“He’s a tidy horse and I’m expecting a big run. We’ve sorted the problem he had with his breathing last season and he’s right in the zone now after a second and a win at the workouts.”

Mark Dux

Mark Dux’s comments

Saturday night at Albion Park

Race 5: Argyle
11.02pm NZ time

“It wouldn’t have mattered where he drew this week, he’s in the money, barring bad luck. He’s going terrific and he gets in so well at the ratings.”

Race Images - Harness