• Racing/
  • Distance Fears For Highland

Ladbrokes Lady Wulfruna Stakes (Fast Track Qualifier) (Listed) 7f 32y

  • (4yo+, 7f 32y, Class 1, 10 runners)
  • Winner £28,355 2nd £10,750 3rd £5,380 4th £2,680 5th £1,345 6th £675
  • Going: Standard
  • Surface: Polytrack
Weighed In:
  • Winning time: 1m 27.48s
  • Off time: 14:21:35
Full result
Result 14:20 Wolverhampton
Pos Horse Distance/th> Odds
1st 4 Chookie Royale 4/1f
2nd 7 Hasopop 9/2
3rd 3 Bertiewhittle ½ 5/1
  • Last Updated: March 7 2014, 19:31 GMT

View from connections ahead of Saturday's Ladbrokes Lady Wulfruna Stakes at Wolverhampton.

Highland Knight: Chasing the carrot
Highland Knight: Chasing the carrot

Andrew Balding fears the seven furlongs of the Ladbrokes Lady Wulfruna Stakes at Wolverhampton may be on the sharp side for Highland Knight.

Balding also runs Intransigent, who has been running in Dubai of late but without much success.

Highland Knight won the Group Three Darley Stakes at Newmarket last October and carries a penalty for that success while Intransigent finished second on this card last season over six furlongs, but Balding thinks he at least has the benefit of being race fit this year.

The winner of the Listed race automatically qualifies for the hugely valuable finals day on Good Friday.

"Highland Knight is lightly raced on the all-weather, the carrot there is Good Friday. He's had a race which will suit him," Balding told At The Races.

"We're looking at the Final over a mile so this is probably a furlong short of his best and he has to carry a Group Three penalty, but he's in great form and this will be two-thirds of the way there to having him qualified for Good Friday.

"He benefits from his first outing and this is all about him needing one more run before he qualifies for the very valuable final, but he's in great heart and always gives his best but this is probably a furlong short.

"It was a great effort to win at Newmarket, he's a stable favourite and has been with us since he was a yearling.

"Intransigent was a bit disappointing in Dubai, I don't think Tapeta really suited his running style.

"He's better on Polytrack and he seems fresh and well. He worked nicely last week but has been half way around the world and back so it's a bit of a guess what form he's in.

"He ran well on this day last year and that was his first run, he tends to improve with racing so we have that in our favour."

Tom Dascombe's Kenny Powers has not been seen since being narrowly beaten in this contest last year, with the gelding sustaining an injury during that outing.

"I remember thinking with a furlong to go that he had the race sewn up and couldn't understand how he didn't win," said Dascombe.

"Anyway, it transpired that he came back from that pretty lame which explained it and he's had a year off since.

"He's done plenty of swimming and will be fit enough to do himself justice, I don't think horses should need a run in this day and age.

"With a horse like him we're thinking of finals day, but we'll just get his first run out of the way first and then take it from there."

Denis Coakley is unsure if Gabriel's Lad will be as effective on the all-weather as the turf, on which he improved enormously last year.

"I'm looking forward to it, he rarely runs a bad race and when he does there's an excuse," said Coakley.

"My worry would be that he wasn't at his best the only time he's ever run at Wolverhampton, but he did run keen that day.

"I just don't know if he's as good on the all-weather as the turf, but with finals day in our mind it is worth finding out."

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