Tips: Archie Stevens can keep up recent form

Don Cantillon: Decided to retire veteran La Estrella. Picture: PA

Don Cantillon: Decided to retire veteran La Estrella. Picture: PA

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Archie Stevens can follow up his recent Wolverhampton success with victory in the Ladbrokes Handicap at Lingfield.

The five-year-old has done all of his winning over five and six furlongs so far but his efforts in defeat suggest that his seven-furlong trip is well within his compass.

David Evans is the fourth trainer to have a crack with this son of Pastoral Pursuits and he has managed to restore spmewhat his fortunes with three wins in 2015 after a lengthy barren spell. Successful at Wolverhampton and Newbury in June, Archie Stevens has been run sparingly of late with an all-weather campaign clearly on connections’ minds. An initial outing at Dunstall
Park yielded third but he showed the benefit of that run when dropping back to the minimum trip to run out a length-and-a-half winner just before Christmas after making every yard. He must shoulder a penalty here but he is in form and gets on especially well with 3lb claimer Philip Prince.

Figurante showed plenty of promise on her racecourse bow at Windsor back in August and should find the 32Red.com Median Auction Maiden Stakes an eminently winnable event.

The Excellent Art filly hails from a winning family and she looks decent enough after dead-heating for second and finishing behind more experience rivals at the Thamesside venue.

She never really looked like winning over six furlongs that day but the way she kept on suggests a switch up to seven furlongs here should be in her favour.

Conversely, Mostashreqah should thrive for a move back in distance in the 32Red Casino Nursery Handicap.

A winner over seven furlongs at Wolverhampton last month, she found a mile beyond her at Kempton on her latest start.

Simon Crisford reverts to her winning trip here and Mostashreqah makes plenty of appeal, even off top weight.

Gamain appears to be on a workable mark ahead of the Local Parking Security Ltd Handicap Chase at Warwick.

A point to point winner in January 2014, Gamain has struggled to find his feet a bit under Rules, but he remains a horse with some, if limited, potential.

A hurdles winner at Huntingdon back in March, Gamain has yet to get his head in front in two starts over the bigger obstacles, although he made significant strides between those outings.

Beaten by 14 lengths at Towcester, he stuck on well at the finish and his proven ability to handle testing ground is a massive plus.

Whitsundays won an average event at Sedgefield at the beginning of the month so his confidence should be riding high ahead of the Derek Fower Transport Handicap Hurdle at Uttoxeter.

Rouquine Sauvage can hit the mark in the Town Electrical Novices’ Limited Handicap Chase.

Meanwhile, La Estrella has been retired less than 24 hours after racing into the record books at Southwell.

Just days before officially turning 13, Don Cantillon’s veteran made history at his favourite circuit by becoming the first horse to win 27 races on the all-weather.

The Newmarket-based trainer reports his pride and joy to have taken his exertions in his stride, but feels the time is right to call it a day.

He said: “The horse has been out this morning and was galloping round the paddock.

“The vet was here to look at another horse, he gave him a thorough examination and I’m delighted to report he’s 100 per cent sound and happy.

“However, after considering it this morning, I’ve decided that he will now be retired. As a gesture to the horse, we won’t ask him to race again. He’s achieved so much and achieved the ultimate yesterday in breaking the record.

“He still thinks he’s a two-year-old – but I want to do what’s right for the horse.”

LINGFIELD

12.30 Ghost Train

1.00 Mostashreqah

1.30 Figurante

2.00 Captain Lars

2.30 Archie Stevens (nap)

3.00 Top Cop

3.30 Justice First

UTTOXETER

12.20 Authorized Too

12.50 Barista

1.20 Whitsundays

1.50 Over My Head

2.20 Rouquine Sauvage

2.50 Little Jimmy

3.20 Miss Giselle

WARWICK

12.40 Solidago

1.10 Garde Fou

1.40 Muckle Roe

2.10 Gamain

2.40 Katie Too

3.10 Eaton Rock

3.40 Mr Fenton

DOUBLE

Archie Stevens

2:30 Lingfield

Figuarante

1:30 Lingfield

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