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Wow! 1:53.3: This Girl just keeps getting better and better and now it’s all on for the Oaks

Lincoln’s Girl paced so fast in her Pot Of Gold win at Albion Park tonight she was just a fraction of a second off becoming Sir Lincoln’s fastest ever performer.

Lincoln Farms’ rapidly improving filly clocked a staggering 1:53.3 mile rate for the 1660 metres - and she didn’t do it on the pegs, rather three wider to the death seat, before drawing out to win by nearly four metres.

Trainer Al Barnes was nearly lost for words after watching Lincoln’s Girl, confidently driven by his son Hayden, run one of the fastest miles by a c0 pacer seen in Queensland.

Lincoln’s Girl runs to the line strongly to beat Timeless Appeal and Mister Diamond at Albion Park tonight.Lincoln’s Girl runs to the line strongly to beat Timeless Appeal and Mister Diamond at Albion Park tonight.“When we got her we thought if we could get her to settle, she’d be a nice sit-sprint filly. We never thought she’d race three wide to the chair and win in 1:53.3. That’s a great time for a filly and she did it tough.’’

No class records are kept in Queensland but you can get some idea of how special the run was by comparing the time top pacer Colt Thirty One ran when winning the 2017 Pot Of Gold - 1:54.1.

When Colt Thirty One bagged the c4-c5 Rising Stars Final last year he was only one tenth of a second faster than Lincoln’s Girl in 1:53.2.

Incredibly, it’s Lincoln’s Girls’ older brother Lincoln Road who holds the mantle as Sir Lincoln’s fastest pacer, having run 1:53.1 twice in his 10 wins in Brisbane for Barnes.

Barnes is trying to stay grounded as he now turns his mind to preparing Lincoln’s Girl for the first of her big assignments, the A$21,110 Redcliffe Oaks (2040m) on June 22.

“She’ll have one more run before then and then she’ll have two weeks to freshen up for the Oaks.’’

Barnes knows he still has work to do to get Lincoln’s Girl into the A$100,000 Queensland Oaks (2138m) on July 13.

“She’s driving well now, and not pulling like she used to, but we now have to start winning over 2100 metres.

“It will be interesting to see what she does when we tuck her in behind. She’s done a bit of work in her last couple of runs and might want to keep charging.’’

Queensland’s top filly Smart As Camm Be won 11 races on end.Queensland’s top filly Smart As Camm Be won 11 races on end.Smart As Camm Be daunting

Barnes also knows it will be a daunting prospect taking on Queensland’s top filly Smart As Camm Be, who has won 11 of her 14 starts.

Smart As Camm Be could well be too good over longer trips but interestingly seven of her wins have been over 1660 metres and the fastest she has clocked is a 1:55.7 mile rate.

In her last two starts she won a heat of the Victoria Oaks, clocking a mile rate of 1:57.2 for the 2240 metres and ran seventh, from a horror draw, in Belle Of Montana’s final.

“She’s a quality filly,’’ says Barnes. “But Lincoln’s Girl just keeps on improving - every time she’s won she’s gone a second quicker. She’s racing way beyond our expectations.’’

Barnes says he’s in love with the family of Lincoln’s Girl and Lincoln Road, who are out of the late Bob McArdle’s broodmare Tania Tandias.

Their younger brother Tommy Lincoln also starred last week, scoring on debut for Lincoln Farms at Alexandra Park.

Lincoln’s Girl clocked closing sectionals of 27.6, 29.6, 27.9 and 28.2 in her win tonight, for a total time of 1:56.9.

The Pot of Gold purse was worth A$6321 which, along with her heat purse of A$2100, saw her bank A$8421 for only a single rating penalty. Her career record now stands at six wins from 18 starts.

She paid $1.70 in Australia and $1.80 in New Zealand.

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.”

Dan Costello Race Photography