Over to you Sarge, see what you can do with this talented pair of Lincoln Farms stayers
Promising stayers Lincoln’s Command and Lincoln Sky fly to Australia tonight to join the Randwick stable of former premiership winner John Sargent.
The pair, who have been lightly tried with Lincoln Farms’ Awapuni trainer Lisa Latta, are making the move to Sydney to hopefully capitalise on the terrific stake money now on offer.
“The money’s so good over here now, especially at the mid-week races, which are all $50,000,’’ says Sargent.
“The Saturday handicaps are worth $125,000 and if you can get over ground you don’t have to be that strong to make good money.’’
Sargent says it’s the ideal time to be working through the grades in Sydney too when the level of competition is down until spring racing starts.
Sargent, who has 40 boxes at Randwick, says with the grounding the two horses have had in Palmerston North, it won’t take him long to get the pair going.
“I might even give them an easy trial and see how they pull up.’’
Both Lincoln’s Command and Lincoln Sky have shown plenty of potential in limited starts.
Lincoln Sky, a Savabeel three-year-old out of Dating, a Waikato Stud family which Sargent is familiar with, was spelled after finishing sixth in a strong Waikato Guineas field in February.
He has won one of his eight starts and has had two runs back in a new preparation, both over 1400 metres on ground too heavy for him.
Lincoln’s Command is rising six but had a disastrous start to his career which held him back for the best part of two seasons.
Bought for $240,000 at the 2015 ready-to-run sale, the Pentire gelding was later found to have a cyst in his stifle which needed two operations.
In only his fifth start, Latta produced him for a huge fresh-up win at Awapuni on May 30 when he was expected to need more ground than the 1550 metres - and banked a pitiful $6250.
Out of a Zabeel mare, he has the pedigree to excel over ground. His full brother Zambezi Warrior was a very talented stayer for Te Akau in 2017 while his grand dam Tall Poppy won 11 races and great grand dam Fun On The Run won 18 races.
Sargent, renowned for his success with stayers, especially fillies, was once a household name in New Zealand.
When he won the trainers’ premiership in 2012, he set a then record of 111 winners, his second premiership title after taking the Malaysian title in 2000.
He claimed his first Group I success in Australia in 2012 with Quintessential in the Queensland Oaks.
But, frustrated with the state of New Zealand racing and inaction by the industry’s leaders, he shifted to Australia soon after.
In 2013, he claimed one of Australia’s most prestigeous races, the A$1 million VRC Oaks with Kirramosa.
In April, 2015 he won the Australian Oaks with Gust Of Wind who beat Winx, the last time the superstar was beaten before her 33-win streak, and in 2017 he claimed his third Wakeful Stakes with Luvaluva.
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Our runners this week
Saturday at Trentham
Platinum Invador, Platinum Dubai, Princess Amelie, Johnny Lincoln, Lincoln Dreamer, Platinum Bordeaux.
Our runners this week: How our trainer rates them
Thursday at Woodville
Race 2: Ajay Lincoln
“He has a wide draw but will come in a lot when the ballots come out. The track looks like it will be more suitable, in the dead range. It will be good to get this race into him and then step him up to a middle distance as Robbie has always felt he would be better over a longer distance. I am expecting a far better run on an improved track.”
Race 3: Lincoln Star
“He has trained on well since his good run at Hastings. The outside draw doesn’t help but we will be positive, go forward, and try to get some cover. He has continued to work well and, with luck, he should be in the finish.”