18 April 2019
Season six of the All-Weather Championships concludes with the £1-million All-Weather Championships Finals Day at Lingfield Park on Good Friday, April 19.
There are 65 runners across the six championship races, including international challengers from France and Ireland.
The John Gosden-trained Wissahickon (Frankie Dettori), the highest-rated runner on Good Friday with an official rating 117, goes for a fifth straight victory in the feature £200,000 Betway Easter Classic (4.15pm, eight runners) over 10 furlongs.
Last year's Cambridgeshire handicap victor is unbeaten in three All-Weather appearances over the course and distance this season and is aiming to be the fourth horse to complete the G3 Betway Winter Derby/Betway Easter Classic double following Tryster (2015), Grendisar (2016) and Convey (2017).
Wissahickon, the 4/11 favourite with Betway, reopposes stablemate Court House (Rab Havlin), Pactolus (Stuart Williams/Richard Kingscote) and Master The World (David Elsworth/Ryan Moore), who all finished behind him in the Betway Winter Derby.
Last year's winner Victory Bond (William Haggas) is aiming become the first dual winner of the Betway Easter Classic, following his half-length victory over Master The World 12 months ago.
Roc Angel (Christophe Soumillon) is one of three runners on the card for French handler Fabrice Chappet. Roc Angel, who was G3-placed in 2017, has yet to finish out of the first three in four outings this year and looked as good as ever on his penultimate start when winning a mile conditions race on Polytrack at Chantilly on March 8.
Chappet said: "We decided to run Roc Angel in the Betway Easter Classic as we thought he might get scratched from the mile race.
"It does not look easy for him against the favourite, but he has been consistent this year and there is good prize money to go for."
The eight runners also include the 112-rated Matterhorn (Mark Johnston/Joe Fanning) and Executive Force (Michael Wigham/Connor Beasley). Both horses are chasing a seventh victory this winter, which would put them level with Lion Hearted (Mick Appleby/Mark Crehan (5)), who runs in the opening £45,000 Sun Racing All-Weather Championships Apprentice Handicap (1.30pm, 14 runners), in the race to be crowned the Winning Most Horse in season six of the All-Weather Championships.
Betway Easter Classic - Betway prices: 4/11 Wissahickon; 5/1 Matterhorn; 9/1 Court House; 12/1 Master The World; 16/1 Victor Bond; 25/1 Pactolus; 33/1 Executive Force, Roc Angel
3.05pm £150,000 Betway All-Weather Sprint Championship, 6f 1y, 11 runners
Alongside Wissahickon, Kachy (Richard Kingscote) is the other headline act on the card as the six-year-old attempts to go one better in the Betway All-Weather Sprint Championship. Tom Dascombe's stable star has been in scintillating form since undergoing a wind operation, setting course records at Wolverhampton on Boxing Day and at Lingfield Park in the Listed Betway Cleves Stakes on February 2.
The 11-strong field also features French raider Forza Capitano (Henri-Alex Pantall/Vincent Cheminaud), Listed victor Encrypted (Hugo Palmer/Ryan Moore) and Encore D'Or (Robert Cowell/Luke Morris), who have all won Fast-Track Qualifiers.
Alfredo Arcano (David Marnane/Oisin Orr) is aiming to become the second Irish-trained winner on Finals Day, following Captain Joy's victory in the 2016 Sun Racing All-Weather Mile Championship.
After three starts on turf in Dubai at the beginning of the year, Alfredo Arcano easily defied top-weight in a six-furlong Polytrack handicap at Dundalk on April 5, his fourth success from as many starts at the track.
Trainer David Marnane said: "Alfredo Arcano won nicely at Dundalk and is very smart around a bend on the All-Weather.
"Lingfield has been the plan since Dundalk and I think the track could suit him well. Kachy will be hard to beat, but you can't be afraid of one horse.
"Alfredo Arcano ran well in Dubai earlier this year, when he was beaten a couple of short-heads on the opening night, but he got a stone bruise two weeks after that and we were on the back foot over there after that.
"He is a big, powerful horse. He is smart out of the gates, he travels and he stays well now. He seems to relax a bit better these days."
Another name to note is George Bowen (David Nolan), who won a handicap impressively at Kempton Park last month. His trainer Richard Fahey has won the Betway All-Weather Sprint Championship three times.
Betway All-Weather Sprint Championship - Betway prices: 4/6 Kachy; 7/1 Encrypted; 8/1 Forza Capitano; 10/1 Encore D'Or, George Bowen; 14/1 Stone Of Destiny; 18/1 Alfredo Arcano; 20/1 Merhoob; 25/1 Royal Birth; 33/1 Alsvinder; 50/1 Areen Heart
2.00pm £150,000 Betway All-Weather Marathon Championship, 1m 7f 169y, 11 runners
Funny Kid triumphed for France in the 2018 Betway All-Weather Marathon Championship and the spoils will head across the English Channel again if Amade (Alessandro and Giuseppe Botti/Christophe Soumillon) can justify his position at the top of the betting.
Amade, the 5/4 favourite with Betway, has won his last four starts on the All-Weather and defeated subsequent Listed scorer Elegiac comfortably on his latest outing in a Fast-Track Qualifier at Chelmsford City on March 7.
The 10 runners in opposition include the John Ryan-trained pair of Aircraft Carrier (Stevie Donohoe) and Grey Britain (Frankie Dettori), plus Stamford Raffles (Jane Chapple-Hyam/Richard Kingscote) and multiple Listed scorer Spark Plug (Brian Meehan/Tom Marquand), who fought out a thrilling finish to a Fast-Track Qualifier at Kempton Park in February (pictured below). Watersmeet (Mark Johnston/Joe Fanning), placed in the last two renewals of this race, also runs.
Betway All-Weather Marathon Championship - Betway prices: 5/4 Amade; 5/1 Aircraft Carrier; 7/1 Grey Britain; 8/1 Watersmeet; 9/1 Spark Plug; 14/1 Higher Power; 16/1 Lord George, Petite Jack, Stamford Raffles; 33/1 Fearsome; 50/1 Battle Of Marathon
2.30pm £150,000 Ladbrokes Fillies' And Mares' All-Weather Championship, 7f 1y, 12 runners
A hugely competitive renewal of the Ladbrokes Fillies' And Mares' All-Weather Championship is in prospect, with all bar three of the 12 runners rated 93 or higher.
Clon Coulis (David Barron/Jamie Spencer), Island Of Life (William Haggas/James Doyle) and Rasima (Roger Varian/David Egan), the respective winners of Fast-Track Qualifiers at Chelmsford City, Wolverhampton and Lingfield Park, all take their chance.
In-form trainer Andrew Balding is represented by the prolific Crossing The Line (David Probert), who bounced back from a rare disappointing effort behind Island Of Life at Wolverhampton to win a seven-furlong conditions race at Kempton Park on March 23.
Balding said: "Crossing The Line is in good form and goes to Finals Day with a decent chance.
"She is a nice filly and won well at Kempton last time out. She has winning form at Lingfield and it is good to support the Finals Day initiative.
"We will see how she gets on there and then the plan would be to look at Listed races on the turf."
Fabrice Chappet is eyeing a good run from Silvery Mist (Stephane Pasquier). The four-year-old has won three of her seven starts on the All-Weather and, on her penultimate start, was just denied in a seven and a half furlong Listed race at Deauville in December.
Chappet said: "Silvery Mist loves the Polytrack. She had entry in the mile race but it made sense to keep her against her own sex.
"She is a talented filly and proved that on her final start last year when she was just beaten in a Listed race.
"My only concern is that seven furlongs might be a little bit short for her."
Listed scorers Castle Hill Cassie (Ben Haslam/Andrew Mullen) and Gorgeous Noora (Archie Watson/Hollie Doyle) also line up.
Ladbrokes Fillies' And Mares' All-Weather Championship - Ladbrokes prices: 7/2 Island Of Life; 9/2 Rasima; 11/2 Crossing The Line; 6/1 Gorgeous Noora; 7/1 Castle Hill Cassie, Heavenly Holly; 9/1 Clon Coulis; 16/1 Silvery Mist; 20/1 Pattie; 25/1 Cry Baby; 40/1 Toy Theatre; 50/1 Treasure Me
3.40pm £150,000 Ladbrokes Three-Year-Old All-Weather Championship, 6f 1y, 12 runners
Chappet's best chance appears to be Pizzicato (Christophe Soumillon), who is disputing favouritism with Deep Intrigue (Mark Johnston/Danny Tudhope) and Charming Kid (Richard Fahey/David Nolan) in the Ladbrokes Three-Year-Old All-Weather Championship.
Having won and finished second on his first two starts this year over a mile, Pizzicato had no problems with the return to sprint distances when winning the Listed Prix Montenica at Chantilly on March 14.
Chappet said: "Pizzicato is doing well and I cannot complain about what he has done this year.
"You know the English form better than me, but he won a stakes race well last time and his rating suggests that he should have a nice chance.
"I expect him to run a good race."
The 12 contenders also include Newcastle Fast-Track Qualifier victor Concierge (George Scott/William Buick), who has since scored on turf in Qatar, and Wolverhampton Fast-Track Qualifier scorer Deputise (William Haggas/James Doyle).
4.45pm £150,000 Sun Racing All-Weather Mile Championship, 1m 1y, 11 runners
Group Two performer Oh This Is Us (Richard Hannon/Tom Marquand) faces 10 rivals in the concluding Sun Racing All-Weather Mile Championship.
They are headed by Keysor Soze (Richard Spencer/Tom Queally), who has posted eye-catching handicap victories and Lingfield Park and Newcastle this winter, and French challenger Indyco (Henri-Alex Pantall/Vincent Cheminaud).
Consistent All-Weather performer Straight Right (Andrew Balding/David Probert) and 2017 G2 July Stakes victor Cardsharp (Mark Johnston/Joe Fanning) also run.