Yes, Maurice is named after the Magic man and he’s tough like Sir Lincoln
Fittingly, Sir Lincoln’s latest up-and-comer Maurice is named after the man who drove the star pacer throughout his great career.
Maurice, tough winner at Westport on Friday, carries the name of top driver Maurice “The magic man” McKendry who piloted Sir Lincoln in 53 of his 57 starts.
Trainer Jim Curtin says owners Kevin and Peter McClintock had no trouble naming their promising three-year-old.
“Maurice is a good friend of Kevin’s and his father’s name is Maurice as well.’’
Maurice the horse also shares his stature and strength with that of former Auckland Cup winner Sir Lincoln, winner of 21 races and $663,000.
“He’s already big and growing bigger all the time and he’s a tough stayer.’’
Curtin will find out just how tough on Sunday when he backs up the horse at Reefton in the Grey Valley Cup over 3200 metres.
“The way the points system is he’s meeting far nicer horses than he should have to after only five starts. The handicapping system’s not great. It suits the ones dropping back in class but not those going up.
“Everyone’s talking about it but nothing ever happens.’’
Curtin, however, hopes Maurice will recover sufficiently from his first day run to still be a factor.
On Friday, he made a sharp three wide move from the back 700 metres out, was outside the leader and favourite Just N Awe turning in, and outstayed him to score by half a neck.
“He’s got a little bit of speed too but he’s still pretty dumb and hasn’t woken up to that yet. I was worried I might have been a bit hard on him but he fought it out really well.’’
Curtin says Maurice had ability from the outset “but he was very immature and took a while to show it.
“He also has a mind of his own. When we weaned him as a foal it took two of us to hang on to him.
“If you don’t have a bit in his mouth he can take you for a ride.’’
Curtin says Maurice hasn’t put a foot wrong in his four starts this prep.
He was shipwrecked at the start fresh-up at Banks Peninsula when locking wheels with a rival, scored well at Geraldine then did a lot of work to lead at Methven before weakening to fifth.
“He has a good future but I’ll probably give him a wee break after Sunday.’’
The McClintocks have another Sir Lincoln colt out of their six win mare Fake Rose named Mr Lincoln who has just been broken in.
“He’s quite a big horse too so he’s out in the paddock.’’
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Sir Lincoln Top 10
Did you know…
1. CUP DAY BIRTH: It was preordained Sir Lincoln would be a headliner when he was born just hours before the 2006 New Zealand Trotting Cup at Addington. Three years later to the day, and almost the hour, he annihilated his rivals on the same course in the Sires’ Stakes Final.
2. AGE NO BARRIER: In his second last race start, at the age of six, Sir Lincoln paced the fastest 1700 metres in New Zealand history, 2:00.5, beating Gold Ace and clocking a mile rate of 1:54 at Alexandra Park. Champion pacer Elsu held the previous record at 2:01.1.
3. ON THREE LEGS: Sir Lincoln ran his last race virtually on three legs, when second to Terror To Love in an Interdominion heat at Auckland. He had to be pulled out of the Melbourne series, and retired, when found to have a subluxated pastern joint - basically his ankle joint was dislocated.
4. SWIFT GOLDEN MILE: Sir Lincoln’s fastest mile was recorded in the 2012 Group III Golden Mile at Menangle in Sydney when he was nosed out by Captain Joy in 1:51.4. He was known by the name Lincoln Royal in Australia.
5. AT THE REINS: One for the trivia fans - how many drivers did Sir Lincoln have in his 57-start career? Maurice McKendry was Linc’s pilot throughout his career but he was MIA four times when the horse was handled by James Stormont, Ken Barron and Blake Fitzpatrick (twice).
6. WINNERS KEEP COMING: In only his third season with runners on the track, Sir Lincoln has already sired the winners of 30 races despite having limited numbers to represent him. Last season in New Zealand alone he had 16 winners from only 39 starters and this term he already has six winners from just 18 starters.
7. SOMEBEACH SOME RAP: Breeding buffs made a beeline for Sir Lincoln after superstar racehorse and stallion Somebeachsomewhere had to be put down with cancer. Sir Lincoln is 7/8th bred on the same cross as Somebeachsomewhere - by Mach Three out of a Beach Towel mare who is in turn out of a Cam Fella mare.
8. DISCOUNT FOR LOYALTY: Broodmare owners are returning to Sir Lincoln in droves. Taken by the attractive foals he is leaving, many book straight back to the Alabar-based sire and take advantage of Lincoln Farms’ loyalty scheme which cuts his service fee in half to just $1250 plus GST.
9. TIME BEST FRIEND: Sir Lincoln’s progeny are mirroring the sire’s own start on the racetrack, benefitting from a little time to mature. The best the horse himself could manage as a two-year-old was one third from four starts but he was a different animal at three, winning four of his first five starts.
10. MEGASTAR’S FREAK DEATH: A freak accident claimed the life of valuable broodmare Lincoln’s Megastar, a full sister to Sir Lincoln. The mare, who opened her career with a nine and a half length walloping at Auckland, was retired after six wins, but left only one foal. She was killed when crushed by a fallen tree in a violent storm. Woodlands Stud has another full sister in two-year-old Moonlighting who is in training with Ray Green.