Simon Mapletoft on the AWC: Horses to follow – 3YO Sprint


Though some of the qualifiers for this Final take place over six furlongs, candidates must have the speed to win over a sharp five at Lingfield on Good Friday.

Sir Mark Prescott’s Acclamation filly Marsha has speed to burn as she demonstrated when dominating a Dundalk sprint in early October. She can build on her competitive rating over the coming months and looks an ideal type to fly around those sharp tracks en route to the 3YO Sprint Final at Lingfield.

Tom Dascombe’s Exceed And Excel colt Above N Beyond progressed markedly from his debut at Kempton, finishing third in a five-furlong Wolverhampton maiden before winning over six back at the London venue at the end of September. An active sort, he possesses a high cruising speed and the ability to perform over five and six furlongs and took his form to a new level when finishing second in a Listed race at Doncaster.

Welsh trainer David Evans likes to keep his team busy so Gracious John is one to look out for in the qualifiers. He made rapid progress on turf, earning a 10lb hike from the handicapper following a Haydock nursery win at the end of September. Happy to attack from the front, he looks the type to emulate the achievements of consistent stable companion Anonymous John in similar races last winter.

Sylvester Kirk does well with a limited team through the winter so his speedy juvenile Dream Destination warrants examination. The way he bustled up Godolphin’s Rouleau in the Group Three Sirenia Stakes at Kempton in September – despite being 18lbs wrong at the weights – suggests he has the potential to be a smart performer in this sphere.

Field Of Vision has been placed in Listed and Group Three company since making every yard in a Chelmsford maiden that he won by a commanding six lengths. He’s an out and out five-furlong sprinter who has improved steadily with racing and could be the type to give Lambourn trainer Joe Tuite some fun in Fast Track Qualifiers.

Another to follow is James Tate’s Adham, who lacks All-Weather experience but has gears and loves to be on the sharp end. Disappointing in the Cornwallis when soft ground scuppered his prospects, this son of Dream Ahead is likely to be back in action for the Fast Track Qualifiers in February.

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