TREMENDOUS ENTRIES RECEIVED FOR TOTESPORT.COM DERBY TRIAL AT LINGFIELD PARK ON SATURDAY
A tremendous total of 18 entries has been received for the £60,000 totesport.com Derby Trial at Lingfield Park on Saturday, May 13.
The extended 11-furlong Group Three contest, first run in 1932, is recognised as one of the leading trials for the Derby, with the likes of Teenoso (1983), Slip Anchor (1985), Kahyasi (1988) and High-Rise (1998) all scoring at Lingfield before achieving glory in the Epsom Classic the following month.
Walk In The Park, who finished second to Kong in last year's renewal, went on to fill the same position behind Motivator in the Derby, while Daliapour also ran second in both contests in 1999.
Other winners at Lingfield to have run placed in racing's Blue Riband include Silver Patriarch, who went down by a short-head to Benny The Dip in 1997, Cacoethes, third to Nashwan in 1989, Mashkour, who filled the same position in 1986 behind Shahrastani, and Shearwalk, who followed home Teenoso in the Derby Trial in 1983 and ran third to the same opponent at Epsom the following month.
Epsom trainer Terry Mills sent out Let Me Try Again to finish second to Franklins Gardens in the 2003 totesport.com Derby Trial, later a gallant seventh in the Derby to Kris Kin, and the stable is aiming to go one better at Lingfield this year with the progressive Before You Go.
The three-year-old Sadler's Wells colt landed the 10-furlong Blue Riband Trial Stakes at Epsom last month by a length and a quarter from Hanoona, following outings on the Polytrack at Lingfield which yielded two wins and a second from three starts, and connections are hopeful of a bold showing on Saturday.
Richard Ryan, assistant trainer to Terry Mills, said today: "Before You Go has come on a lot since his last run at Epsom, where he handled the track well, and he still seems to be improving.
"It was a good performance as it was only his second race ever on turf - he got left in the stalls on his debut at Newmarket as a two-year-old which was a complete non-event.
"We hope he will relish the extra distance at Lingfield. He's by Sadler's Wells so he'll probably be seen at his best on an easier surface."
All The Way's fifth behind Oath in the 1999 Derby is the best that the Mills stable has done in four previous attempts at the Classic, although Ryan is unsure how Before You Go would compare to those that have gone before him.
"We wouldn't know if he has a better chance than our previous runners in the Derby - they were different horses in different years against different classes of fields.
"He has a chance in the Derby but he has to keep improving. We are very happy with him and Ian Mongan, who was on board last time, again rides."
The other totesport.com Derby Trial entries include Andre Fabre's Linda's Lad, who landed the Group One Criterium de Saint-Cloud in November, William Haggas' Primary, who took the Group Three Betfred Classic Trial at Sandown last month, plus the Mick Channon-trained pair Hazeymm and Youmzain, while Aidan O'Brien has four entered - Septimus, Altius, Dylan Thomas and Mountain.
The ground at Lingfield is currently good following 15 millimetres of recent rain. Further showers are forecast for Thursday, though the ground is expected to remain good for Saturday.
Lingfield Park is delighted to welcome the tote as the new sponsor of the important Derby and Oaks trials that day, plus two other valuable races.
Racing at Lingfield Park is the closest any Derby horse will experience to Epsom - particularly the left-hand downhill bend into the straight.
Tote Chairman Peter Jones said: "Being the biggest sponsors of racing, the tote is linked with many major races and therefore it is a great pleasure to become involved for the first time with the prestigious Derby and Oaks trials at Lingfield Park.
"The record over the years of horses going on to win at Epsom is quite good, and it would be terrific if our association with the races leads to an even better record!"
In addition to the totesport.com Derby Trial, the tote is supporting the Listed totescoop6 Oaks Trial (3.10pm), worth £50,000, which has attracted 28 entries, the £60,000 totesport 0800 221221 Heritage Handicap, with 22 entries, and the Group Three £50,000 totepool Chartwell Fillies Stakes, with 12 entries including one from France and three from Ireland.
Prize money on the day is a grand total of £241,000, Lingfield Park's richest raceday.
Mark Jones, Managing Director at Lingfield Park, commented: "I am delighted to welcome the tote as new sponsors of these high status races at Lingfield Park.
"The course is in great condition. I am very pleased with the pre-raceday sales and, providing we get some good weather, I am confident we will attract a very good crowd.
"It is Lingfield Park's most prestigious day of the year and, despite the course holding nearly 100 meetings a year including Polytrack, jumping and turf Flat, the Derby Trials fixture always creates that special sense of excitement, and is hugely popular with everyone."
Gates open at 12.10pm
Order of Races
2.10 The totesport 0800 221221 Heritage Handicap (Class 2)
Total prize fund £60,000, 7 furlongs. Channel 4 TV
2.40 The totesport.com Derby Trial Stakes (Class 1) (Group 3)
Total prize fund £60,000, 1 mile 3 furlongs 106 yards. Channel 4 TV
3.10 The totescoop6 Oaks Trial (Class 1) (Listed Race)
Total prize fund £50,000, 1 mile 3 furlongs 106 yards. Channel 4 TV
3.40 The Edenbridge Maiden Stakes (Class 5)
Total prize fund £6,000, 1 mile 2 furlongs.
4.15 The totepool Chartwell Fillies' Stakes (Class1) (Group 3)
Total prize fund £50,000, 7 furlongs.
4.50 The Lingfield Park Trials Day Handicap (Class 4)
Total prize fund £10,000, 6 furlongs.
5.25 The OCS Group Ladies Handicap (Class 5)
Total prize fund £5,000, 7 furlongs. (Lady Amateur Jockeys)
Children under 16 (accompanied) FREE.
Premiere Enclosure £22
Grandstand Enclosure £17
Restaurant Package to include car parking, Premier Enclosure badge, racecard, four-course meal in the Trackside Restaurant, table for the entire day.
For further enquiries please contact sales and marketing at Lingfield Park
Tel: 01342 834800 or 0870 2200022.
Book on-line www.lingfield-racecourse.co.uk to receive a £2 discount on badges.
Bookings on-line will be taken up to 48 hrs prior to the date of the race meeting.
Facilities and Additional Entertainment for children
Over the past four years, Arena Leisure has spent in excess of £10 million at the Surrey track making huge improvements and changes to facilities for both human and equine patrons. The viewing restaurant is now rated as one of the best racecourse facilities in this country, and is already almost fully booked for this meeting.
All the newly refurbished facilities will be open on the day including:
In the Premier Enclosure enjoy the popular Trackside restaurant catering for 270 customers and sited opposite the winning post with extensive views over the entire track. It is wise to pre-book a table.
Alternatively, the Brasserie with extended conservatory, serving excellent hot and cold buffet style meals with a full bar is a perfect option. There is always a good atmosphere in the Seafood and Champagne bar with patio seating outside.
The Grandstand Enclosure offers an excellent range of bars and food outlets including the Fish and Chip Bar, the Deli Marche serving a wide variety of meals and tasty snacks, and the Trattoria serving fabulous Italian style fayre, which is actually open to patrons of either enclosure.
Clown, face painter and bouncy castle. Shoot for goal - blow up bouncy castle style footy goal score game.
FA Cup final to be shown on dedicated screens around the course and we have two giant screens facing the grandstands, one will show all the racing and one to show all the football action.
Lingfield Derby Trial History and data.
Roll of Honour
Year Winner SP Jockey Trainer Owner
2005 Kong 9/2 T Quinn J L Dunlop L Neil Jones
2004 Percussionist 11/4 L Dettori J Gosden the late R Sangster
2003 Franklins Gardens 5/1 D Holland M H Tompkins Mrs M Barwell
2002 Bandari 11/4 K Darley M Johnston A Al-Rostamani
2001 Perfect Sunday 11/8F R Hughes B W Hills K Abdulla
2000 Saddler's Quest 10/3F K Darley G A Butler The Fairy Story Partnership
1999 Lucido 3/1 T Quinn J L Dunlop Mrs H Focke
1998 High-Rise 15/8 L Dettori L M Cumani Sheikh Mohammed Obaid Al Maktoum
1997 Silver Patriarch 5/4F Pat Eddery J L Dunlop Peter S Winfield
1996 Mystic Knight 4/1 L Dettori R Charlton Lady Oppenheimer
1995 Munwar 5/6F W Carson P T Walwyn Hamdan Al Maktoum
1994 Hawker's News 5/1 W R Swinburn Sir M Stoute Sheikh Mohammed
History of the Lingfield Derby Trial
In its 74-year history the Lingfield Park Derby Trial has cemented its position as the most successful of all the specialist trial races - hardly surprising when you consider that Lingfield's configurations are the closest any Derby horse will experience to the unique undulations of Epsom.
The trial was the brainchild of Fred Wilmot, who was clerk of the course in 1932 and obviously saw the similarities between Lingfield racecourse and its Surrey neighbour. Wilmot could hardly have dreamed of a better start when the first winner that year, April The Fifth, who was owned and trained by actor Tom Walls, stormed home by two lengths from Firdaussi and went on to confirm the form at Epsom, landing the spoils in the Derby by three-quarters of a length with his old Lingfield rival back in fifth.
It took just five years for the trial to produce another dual winner when Mid-day Sun won both races by a length and a half. After a 15-year barren spell, Lingfield was back amongst the Derby winners in the shape of the Aga Khan's brilliant colt Tulyar, who won seven out of seven during the 1952 season. He hacked up in the Lingfield Park Derby Trial by an easy two lengths before battling tenaciously to win at Epsom from Gay Tune, who was ridden by a 16-year-old whippersnapper named Lester Piggott.
Following Parthia's win in both races in 1959, the Derby Trial went through something of a barren spell, but there was a huge upturn in fortunes at the start of the 1980s and the race subsequently went through a golden period.
Teenoso stopped the rot in 1983, winning the Derby Trial and the 'big one' by three lengths but his efforts were overshadowed two years later by the great Slip Anchor - surely the best ever winner of this race. Henry Cecil's colt, partnered by the brilliant American Steve Cauthen, astonished the Lingfield crowd when sluicing to victory by 10 lengths and then went on to land the Blue Riband impressively at Epsom by a seven lengths. Only the legendary Shergar has won the Derby by a wider margin in the modern era.
In 1988 Luca Cumani's Khayasi made it three Derby winners in six years for the Lingfield Park Classic Trial, giving the present Aga Khan a Lingfield Derby Trial/Derby double. Cumani clearly appreciated the benefit of giving a Derby hopeful a spin on a very similar circuit as he did exactly the same thing 10 years later with High-Rise, who was made to work really hard for both victories, landing the trial by a neck then scraping home by a head in the Derby.
Last year's Lingfield Park Derby Trial runner-up Walk In The Park also came second in the Epsom Classic.
Down the years the Lingfield Park Derby Trial has been responsible for producing plenty of star performers and looks set to do so for many years to come. Aureole (won the Coronation Cup, Hardwicke Stakes and King George, also second in the Derby), Cacoethes (Derby runner-up), Rock Hopper (multiple Group winner), Bob's Return (St Leger winner) and Silver Patriarch (Derby runner-up and St Leger winner) are just a few of the top-class racehorses who clearly appreciated starting off their three-year-old campaigns at Lingfield Park.
OVER £1.4 MILLION ON OFFER FOR ASCOT'S OPENING SIX JUMPS FIXTURES
* Ascot Jumping to relaunch with two £500,000+ Meetings
* New Woodford Reserve Chase for two milers worth £175,000
* The Ladbroke, Europe's most valuable handicap hurdle at £150,000, returns
* BGC continue Christmas Meeting and £100,000 Long Walk Hurdle sponsorship
* Coral to sponsor £100,000 Ascot Hurdle
* Curtain to be raised with new £100,000 three mile United House Chase
The six days of jump racing at Ascot later this year will offer a total prize fund of £1,427,000, including two day fixtures in November and December, each worth in excess of £500,000.
Overall prize money on offer over the jumps in 2006 represents an increase of over £600,000, or 85%, on the equivalent period from October to December in 2003 (5 racedays in the period in the last year of racing pre-redevelopment).
United House, sponsors at Ascot for 16 years, will continue to back the feature race on Ascot's first jumps day of the season on Saturday, 28th October - a three mile open handicap chase worth £100,000. Also on the card will be a new two mile open handicap hurdle worth £80,000 and the £40,000 Listed two miler, previously the feature United House Chase.
The17th and 18th of November meeting is worth £537,000 with the Friday fixture branded "Allied Irish Bank Day." AIB were announced as an Ascot Founding Partner in December.
The feature chase on Saturday's card is a new race for Ascot, the £175,000 Woodford Reserve Handicap Chase, an open race over two miles and the second most valuable handicap chase in the calendar after the John Smith's Grand National.
Woodford Reserve is a premium bourbon distributed in the UK by Bacardi Brown-Forman.
Sharing the spotlight on that day is the Grade Two Coral Ascot Hurdle which will be run for £100,000, an increase of £65,000 from when it was last run at Ascot in 2003.
"We're delighted to be back sponsoring at the new Ascot and particularly excited about the Coral Ascot Hurdle," said Coral spokesman Simon Clare.
"Both we and Ascot identified this race as a potential improver and one apt for a significant prize money boost. Equally, by reducing the trip just slightly to 2 miles 3½ furlongs, we'll be looking to attract both Champion and Ladbrokes World Hurdle types at a time when their Cheltenham targets may not yet be clear."
Also on the card is the Grade 2 £70,000 Amlin 1965 Chase, commemorating the year that jumping began at Ascot.
Ascot's December fixture, worth £520,000 in total, returns on Friday 15th and Saturday 16th December, rebranded as the BGC Christmas Meeting, as CEO and Chairman Lee Amaitis explains:
"Having sponsored this fixture for six years under Cantor subsidiary banners, we are delighted to be back at Ascot sponsoring the BGC Christmas Meeting and indeed four individual races, including the £100,000 Grade One Cantor Long Walk Hurdle. There can be few better places to showcase the best jumps horses than the new Ascot and we're tremendously excited about staging such a high profile meeting there."
The Ladbroke Hurdle, returning to this fixture having been seconded to Sandown's January meeting during the redevelopment, is the feature race of the meeting.
"Worth £150,000, the Ladbroke is the most valuable handicap hurdle in Europe in 2006," said Mike Dillon of Ladbrokes.
"We're delighted to be bringing it back to its home venue and look forward to enhancing further its reputation as one of the highest quality and most competitive betting races of the season."
The year closes with a £100,000 fixture on Saturday 30th December.
"Jumps racing is returning to Ascot with a real bang this year," said Douglas Erskine-Crum, Chief Executive at Ascot.
"However, this is very much Phase One as we look to increase the profile of jumps racing at Ascot and to enhance our fixtures over the next couple of years. In the Ladbroke and the new Woodford Reserve Handicap Chase, we have the most valuable handicap hurdle in Europe this year and the second richest handicap chase. With races like those, the United House Chase, the Coral Ascot Hurdle and Cantor Long Walk Hurdle, all worth £100,000, we really want to send out a message that we intend to offer highly attractive opportunities to owners and trainers and to play a prominent part in the jumps season.
"I'm delighted to welcome back so many long standing sponsors, and indeed some new ones, and we look forward to promoting their races with them."