Levitate Lifts William Hill Lincoln Prize
1 Levitate 20/1
Levitate just denied Global Village and Brae Hill in a thrilling finish to the William Hill Lincoln at Doncaster.
Last year's winner Brae Hill appeared set to enter the history books as a dual victor under Tony Hamilton but Levitate, having his first start for John Quinn, came with a late lunge under Darren Egan to deny the Richard Fahey-trained seven-year-old, who had also finished second two years ago.
Brian Ellison's Global Village absolutely flew home under Martin Lane and nabbed Brae Hill on the line for second. Completing the places was Brae Hill's stablemate Justonefortheroad.
The well-fancied Eshtibaak held every chance heading into the final furlong but was run out of it close home.
Egan said: "My instructions were to get him across just behind the leaders. I got a bit of luck when he picked up and he stuck his head out to the line. I was pretty confident (on the line), but you couldn't be 100% sure."
Quinn added: "I was so happy he got in the race this week. He'd been working pleasingly and we thought he'd go in the ground. He had to go up another notch, but Pivotals tend to improve with age.
"We decided to claim off him with Darren and it was the right thing to do. The 3lb won us the race. The lad had never ridden him, but he rode him as we said.
"We won it (the Lincoln) with Blythe Knight (at Newcastle), and he just got done on the line by Smokey Oakey here as well. To win another Lincoln is phenomenal. It's great for the lads at home as it's been an awful winter for stable staff.
"It's the first horse we've had for Mr Wentworth (owner). We've had this horse since before Christmas. The first four home are trained in Malton. It's good for the town."
Ellison said of Global Village: "He's run a blinder. I think his draw (one) has beat him. He was without cover. He had a lot of runs in good races last year, so now he has shown he stays a mile we might just pick them this year. We could think of going for the Victoria Cup again at Ascot, which he won last year."
William Hill Lincoln (Heritage Handicap) (Str)
THE WILLIAM HILL LINCOLN FACTS AND FIGURES
* A race called the Lincolnshire Handicap was first run over two miles at Lincoln in August, 1849.
* In 1853, a new fixture was staged at Lincoln in February and featured a race called the Lincoln Spring Handicap, run over a mile and a half and won by Caurire. The distance of this contest was reduced to a mile in 1855 and moved to a date in March.
* In 1859, the two races merged to become the Lincolnshire Handicap, run over a mile in March.
* The Lincolnshire Handicap was run at Lincoln (The Carholme) up to and including 1964. Following that course’s closure, the race moved to Doncaster in 1965 and was renamed the Lincoln Handicap.
* Along with the Grand National, the William Hill Lincoln forms the Spring Double. Jockey Dave Dick achieved the unique distinction of winning both races - he scored in the Lincoln of 1941 on Gloaming, carrying just 7st 4lb and went to triumph in the ADevon Loch Grand National of 1956 on ESB, who shouldered 11st 3lb to victory.
* During World War II, three runnings were held at Pontefract (1943-1945). The 1916 renewal was at Lingfield, while there was no race in 1917 or 1918 due to World War I. Due to ,34 million redevelopment at Doncaster, the 2006 renewal was held at Redcar, while in 2007 the race was hosted by Newcastle. It returned to a revamped Doncaster in 2008.
* The dozen winners of the William Hill Lincoln between 1926 and 1937 (King Of Clubs (1926), Priory Park (1927), Dark Warrior (1928), Elton (1929), Leonidas II (1930), Knight Error (1931), Jerome Fandor (1932), Dorigen (1933), Play On (1934), Flamenco (1935), Overcoat (1936) and Marmaduke Jinks (1937)) gave their names to the horses used in the popular board game Totopoly.
* There have been only been two dual winners of the William Hill Lincoln - Ob (1906 & 1907) and Babur (1957 & 1958). No horse has managed to win more than once since the race was transferred to Town Moor.
* The biggest shocks came with the 100/1 shots King Of Clubs (1926), Elton (1929) and Jockey Treble (1947). Since it has been run at Doncaster, the biggest-price winner was the 50/1 shot Bronze Hill (1973) while there have been six 33/1 successes during the same period - Southwark Star (1975), Cuvee Charlie (1988), Evichstar (1990), Roving Minstrel (1995), Stone Ridge (1996) and Zucchero (2002).
* The shortest-price winner was Saucebox (1855, Evens). During its time at Doncaster, seven favourites have obliged - Riot Act (1966), Captains Wings (1978), Cataldi (1985), Right Wing (1999), John Ferneley (2000), Nimello (2001) and Stream Of Gold (2005).
* Since its transfer to Doncaster, the most successful trainer has been Paul Cole, with three wins (Kuala Lipis 1997, John Ferenely, 2000 and Nimello, 2001).
* No jockey has been able to win more than twice since 1965. Jimmy Fortune, Richard Quinn and Jimmy Quinn are the only current jockeys to have ridden two winners, joining Scobie Breasley, Sandy Barclay, Edward Hide and Greville Starkey. The Lincoln was one of the few races to elude Lester Piggott.
* Since 1965, Cataldi (1985) and Babodana (2004) share the honour of having carried the biggest weight to victory - 9st 10lb. The lowest winning weight during the same period was the 7st 3lb carried by Southwark Star (1975)
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