FIGHTING TEMERAIRE recaptured winning ways in a thrilling race at Lingfield last night when justifying favouritism under a fine ride by Martin Dwyer to win by a neck!
The six-year son of Invincible Spirit was sent off the well-backed 9/4 jolly and was one of 15 runners in the 7f handicap. Drawn on the near side in stall 15, he was held up but was always travelling well. However, he had a wall of horses in front of him during the first half of the race and Martin Dwyer had to bide his time as he waited for a gap to appear. He switched him right and chased the long time leader, Magical Ride two furlongs from home and chased him all the way up the straight to wear him down during the final 50 yards, prevailing by a neck.
Fighting Temeraire has had his issues and only raced once last year before making his seasonal reappearance in March of this year, after an absence of 426 days. He showed a return to form during his last two runs at Doncaster and Nottingham but had continued to come down the weights and last night ran off 59, some 30 pounds below his last win, which was three years ago.
The one concern was the ground as he needs it fast but after plenty of rain during the week, a warm, drying day led to good ground and Fighting Temeraire duly landed his third win in 21 starts. Congratulations to owners Michael and Heather Yarrow, who were following up their win on Daddy’s Daughter last Sunday.
This was the sixth win for the stable in the last nine days and puts Harper Lodge Farm on 24 wins for the year which compares with 23 wins by the end of June last year and there’s still a week of the month to go!