This year’s Lockinge Stakes has attracted 25 entries, including popular names Addeybb, Beat The Bank and Rhododendron. The group one contest run over the straight mile at Newbury will go to post on May 19th and there’s a £350,000 purse on offer.
Godolphin rate as the event’s leading owner, having produced eight winners so far and they have tightened their grip in recent renewals, sending in each of the last three champions and four of the last five. Ribchester completed the hat-trick last year following glory for Night of Thunder and Belardo.
Students of the ante-post horse racing betting markets will find Sheikh Ahmed Maktoum’s star gelding Addeybb as early favourite with bookmakers and traders have the jolly quoted 5/1 going into race month. The four-year-old chestnut has been trusted to the capable hands of William Haggas and the Newmarket-based multi award-winning trainer has his charge in great shape.
Addeybb brings a racing record of five wins and a place from seven starts and despite ending fourth on debut at Newbury last year he has done nothing but progress since. The form horse was never more impressive however than when claiming the bet365 Mile at Sandown in April against group two company.
Priced as a 6/4 fav following a run of two wins on the trot he was good enough to complete the treble and live up to the expectations of backers when seeing off nearest finisher Stormy Antarctic over a mile on good to soft ground, slapping down his main rival by almost three lengths.
Given an expert ride by jockey James Doyle, they timed their attack to perfection with the pilot happy to rely on late pace to pass beaten horses and work his way to the front. Despite taking hold only a furlong from the pole there was little panic among backers or connections and if Addeybb is to continue that purple patch in the Lockinge we’re sure to see similar tactics.
Despite admitting to racing fans that taking their place in the showpiece of Newbury’s flat season would be the sensible option trainer William Haggas refused to be drawn on a definite path for his stable hero but explained they also planned on entering him in the Prix D’Ispahan at Longchamp as they suspect he has further in him.
Le Brivido currently heads the chasing pack as a 6/1 second favourite for France’s champion trainer Andre Fabre and British fans already know what the four-year-old colt is capable of having seen him scoop the Jersey Stakes at Ascot last summer. Failed when stepping back in trip to contest the Abernant Stakes at Newmarket next time despite going off a short-price favourite but a mile will play to his strengths.
Godolphin are expected to send in plucky underdog Jimmy Two Times followers will remember as the talented grey who boasts a fantastic record in France. The five-year-old recently won the group two Du Muguet at Saint-Cloud over seven furlongs and if he’s able to carry that form over to English soil he’ll look massively overpriced at 14/1.