WILLIAM Haggas was pleased to hear Doncaster have had a little rain ahead of today’s Betway Lincoln to boost the chances of his runner Mange All.
The Newmarket trainer has already won the historic handicap three times, with High Low in 1992, Very Wise in 2007 and Penitent in 2010.
Should he strike with Mange All then he would equal trainer Jack Robinson’s tally of four wins, the last coming in 1910. Haggas’ fine record in the first leg of the spring double has helped elevate Mange All to ante-post favourite.
The Zamindar gelding is relatively unexposed and has won two of his seven starts. Speaking from Dubai, where he will saddle Graphic in the Godolphin Mile at Meydan, Haggas said: “He seems fine. They’ve had a drop of rain, which is good. Everyone talks about the draw [seven], but we’ll see.”
John Ryan has Ocean Tempest in prime condition to defend his Lincoln crown – but is praying for more rain ahead of the race.
“He’s got to defend his title. He’s in good form and he’s come back from Dubai fit and well,” said the Newmarket trainer. “We haven’t had quite as much as rain as I would have liked, as of yet. I think he can put up a creditable run. I think the draw (10) is OK as well. You just go there fingers crossed.
“Joe Doyle gets on well with the horse and won on him last year at Chester, which was probably his best race off a rating of 115. “If he could return to that form he’d be a tough horse to bet, but the ground would be a big factor.”
Eve Johnson Houghton thinks a lot of What About Carlo and is hoping the Lincoln will be the start of a successful year for the four-year-old.
“He’s in great form and it’s a real good starting point for him,” said the Blewbury trainer. “He’s had a run on the all-weather. The track at Lingfield was a bit sharp for him, but he ran well.
“I’m hoping for great things from him this year and I think he’s got a good each-way chance.
“You have to take the draw (12) as it comes. He has to go where the pace is. Obviously I’ll go through the race quite carefully with Jimmy [Fortune, jockey].
“You just have to play it by ear and hope the horse is good enough.”
Bronze Angel is burdened with top weight as he attempts to add another valuable handicap to his two victories in the Cambridgeshire.
“The difficulty for him is having to carry top weight when meeting improving young horses who may just have slipped under the radar a little bit,” said trainer Marcus Tregoning.
“He’s in good form, but traditionally, it takes him a little while to hit top gear. He’s really a midsummer horse and I just hope he runs OK.”