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Lincoln Farms’ quality pair Lincoln King and Platinum Invador primed for big cups

Lincoln Farms’ two pronged assault on the $500,000 Auckland Cup is right on target with both Lincoln King and Platinum Invador primed for a final lead-up in Saturday week’s $100,000 Avondale Cup at Ellerslie.

The line-up for the March 13 feature at Ellerslie is already down to 18 with Platinum Invador the equal second favourite at $5 and Lincoln King on the fourth line of betting at $12.

And the trainers of both quality stayers are happy with their charges, Stephen Marsh in particular brimming with confidence about Lincoln King.

“I’m really happy with him and can’t fault him,” said Marsh. “He’s bounced out of his last race very well and I thought it was a super run.”

Lincoln King is nosed out by Dragon Storm in the New Zealand Cup. PHOTO: Ajay Berry/Race Images.Lincoln King is nosed out by Dragon Storm in the New Zealand Cup. PHOTO: Ajay Berry/Race Images.Starting at Pukekohe over only 1600 metres, which is way short of his best, the New Zealand Cup runner-up was last on straightening but ran past all but winner Royal Performer in the home straight.

“He’s pretty fit - he doesn’t take a whole heap for a stayer, which is good - and he’s right on track for the Avondale Cup next week.”

Hot jockey Danielle Johnson has been confirmed for the Avondale Cup (2400m) ride and Marsh says there’s a strong chance she will stay aboard for the Auckland Cup (3200m).

Lisa Latta says Platinum Invador is also looking good for the staying features.

Pipped by the smallest of noses possible in the City Of Auckland Cup (2400m) two starts back he did all that Latta expected when, freshened, he ran ninth in the Taranaki Cup on February 6.

Platinum Invador pipped by Savy Yong Blonk in the City of Auckland Cup. PHOTO: Trish Dunell.Platinum Invador pipped by Savy Yong Blonk in the City of Auckland Cup. PHOTO: Trish Dunell.Ridden handier than usual in midfield to make use of a good draw, Platinum Invador found the 1800 metres far too short and was outpaced in the run home.

“He finished about the same distance from the winner as last year (4.9 lengths, compared with 5.4 lengths) and I was happy with the run.”

Ryan Elliot retains the ride next Saturday at Ellerslie where Platinum Invador has turned in his best runs, including a third in the Auckland Cup last year after a rocky run.

Shadow field

The shadow field for the Barfoot & Thompson Auckland Cup is:

Our runners this week: How our trainer rates them

Lisa Latta

Lisa’s comments

Saturday at Otaki

Race 2: Lincoln Kruz

“He galloped nicely this morning. Nine is a tricky draw but his best runs have been when he is ridden back. Hopefully they run along up front which will give him the chance to finish the race off. He looks fantastic and is well in himself.”

Race 5: Platinum Spirit

“He was disappointing last start but we have had his back done since, which was out, and he has really brightened up over the last 10 days. The top three look the ones to beat but he has raced well at Otaki before and the way he has bounced back I expect him to be very competitive. This race fits in well with the St Leger at Trentham in mid March. Sam O’Malley rides.”

Race 8: Father Lenihan

“He has drawn two and Hazel Schofer has been booked, claiming 2kg down to 60kg. He galloped well yesterday but this morning he was just a little bit off on his near side front and it is in his foot. We are on top of it, poulticing him up, so two days out from the race we hope he’ll get there but a decision won’t be made until race morning.”