Captain Ray’s colts in charge again with only 25 days until the first Young Guns heat
With only 25 days until the first Young Guns heat at Auckland, Lincoln Farms trainer Ray Green is happy that he’ll have three strong chances facing the starter.
And Green says it’s no coincidence that two of them are by American stallion Captaintreacherous whose juvenile stock are again dominating in North America.
When the judge’s placings were given after a close four-way finish at the Pukekohe trials last Saturday there was only a neck separating his Captaintreacherous colts Captain Nemo and Platinum Stride who were a neck ahead of his third runner Bondi Shake, who is by Captaintreacherous’ ill-fated sire Somebeachsomewhere.
Graeme Rogerson’s sale topping Art Major colt Challenger was a further half length back third after being gifted the inside running up the home straight.
The juveniles ran the mile in 2:03.7, exactly four seconds faster than they recorded in their workout seven days earlier, with closing sectionals of 57.7 and 28.9.
“We intended to run about 2:02 to 2:03,” says Green. “They’ve all improved by four seconds and are continuing to do everything right.”
Green says there’s nothing between Lincoln Farms’ Captain Nemo and Platinum Stride, who will be raced by leading Australian owner Emilio Rosati.
“Platinum Stride might be a bit zipper but all three of them are quality colts who are schooling up nicely.
“They’re in line with what we’ve had in the past but we’ll just have to wait and see if they morph into Sires’ Stakes horses.”
Last December Green also had three representatives in the first Young Guns heat - Double Or Nothing and Perfect Stride, who ran second and third, and Sir Tiger who was seventh.
Winner Smooth Deal, who clocked 2:02.9, broke the Lincoln farms’ early dominance in the north when venturing south from the All Stars’ barn in Rolleston.
And Green says Christchurch is the only place he can see a serious challenger materialising from at the moment with Cran Dalgety and Nathan Purdon’s Krug (Bettor’s Delight - Champagne Princess) having impressed at the cup trials, clocking a mile rate of 2:04.1 in winning over 2000 metres.
Interestingly, the All Stars’ runner-up It’s All About Faith, is by Captaintreacherous, a sire Green is liking more and more - Spice It Up, also by Captaintreacherous, has shown the most early ability of his fillies.
Captaintreacherous was the first two-year-old in history to win four sub 1:50 miles and the only horse other than the legendary Niatross to win Pacer of the Year as a two-year-old, a title he also snared at three.
Winning eight of his 10 starts at two and 13 of his 16 starts at three, Captaintreacherous set a career mile mark of 1:47.1.
A few weeks ago Captaintreacherous produced the trifecta in the US$790,000 Breeders Crown two-year-old fillies section at Woodbine Mohawk. And only last week De Los Cielos Deo ran 1:49.2 in winning the $225,000 Monument Circle at Hoosier Park, and Marloe Hanover (2yo filly, 1:50.3) and Force N Fury (2yo colt, 1:50.2) collected the $192,000 Kindergarten Classic Finals at The Meadowlands.
The opening $25,000 Young Guns heat will be run at Auckland on December 13 with the second round on New Year’s Eve.
Green hopes to arrange a trial on race night for his two-year-olds in the next week or two to give them experience around Alexandra Park.
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Our runners this week
Saturday night at Albion Park
Our runners this week: How our trainer rates them
Friday night at Auckland
Race 2: Frisco Bay
“He obviously needed the run last week. He pulled his way round the field and sat outside the leader but he couldn’t cop a run like that first-up and got tired. The ability is there, whether he’s fit enough or not we’ll find out. But I expect him to go well, the three draw is much better than last week.”
Race 2: Lenny Lincoln
“He’ll probably need a race but he’s capable of running a slot. He’s unlucky not to have won a race, all three of his seconds were good. He’s got a bit better with each of his trials this time in and he got home well last Saturday, after coming widest on the turn.”
Race 3: Obadiah Dragon
“The way the race was run at Cambridge last week, his effort wasn’t bad at all. Moni (Monika Ranger) said he felt strong and, if he’d been a few slots closer, he would have been right in it. He’ll be improved for the run.”
Race 3: Leo Lincoln
“He’s very consistent - he’s only missed a couple of cheques. But he’s another just coming back and should improve with the run.”