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Ayr Target for Progressive Winning Express


09/07/12 - Ed McMahon has made something of a speciality of producing speedy two-year-old’s since taking over the licence on the retirement of his father, Bryan, a few years ago. And in Winning Express, who took her unbeaten record to two from two when winning in listed company at Salisbury recently, he looks to have a juvenile capable of progressing further up the sprinting ranks, writes Elliot Slater.

In what looked a strong renewal of the Country Gentleman’s Association EBF Dick Poole Stakes at the Wiltshire venue, the daughter of Camacho was sent off the 100/30 second favourite on under Richard Hughes, having created a very favourable impression when making a winning racecourse bow at Sandown a month earlier, in denying New Forest by half-a-length.

Settling well in the mid-division, McMahon’s charge was asked to improve her position entering the final quarter-mile, and picked up in fine style to hit the front over 100 yards from home, then stayed on willingly to beat the 103-rated Jadanna (who had been hampered earlier) by a length-and-a-quarter. Mick Channon’s Graphic Guest ran with plenty of credit to grab third place a further neck away.

McMahon made it clear after her win at Sandown that he viewed Winning Express as a potential Cornwallis Stakes filly later in the campaign. However, after her latest success it appears that a trip north of the border to the Ayr Western Festival later this month could be on the cards for the £16,000 purchase, and a crack at the Group 3 Firth of Clyde Stakes. The proviso is that there is decent ground, as her handler is convinced that testing going would hinder his exciting prospect’s chances.

A couple of bookmakers have introduced Winning Express into the ante-post market for the Qipco 1000 Guineas next May at odds of 33/1, but on the evidence of her racecourse appearances so far, she looks all about speed and appears unlikely to stay a truly run mile.

Race-goers should also be looking towards the big race at Town Moor, this month. Visit the Betfair St Leger website for the latest on the historic contest.

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