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Lucky Kristale - York 22.8.13

Lucky Kristale: was another high-class winner of the Lowther

  PICTURE: Edward Whitaker (  

York keen to press for Lowther Stakes upgrade

YORK is to press for top-flight status for the Group 2 Lowther Stakes in time for next season said the racecourse's chief executive William Derby, adding that the Group 2 Gimcrack Stakes would also be a suitable candidate for an upgrade.

Reflecting on a hectic four days of action on the Knavesmire, Derby hailed the Ebor meeting a success, while highlighting areas ripe for enhancement.

"We felt the week in general had a really good feel," said Derby. "The atmosphere was great and the racing stories from a human element were remarkable."

Focusing on the Lowther, for which prize-money was up £40,000 on 2012, meaning connections of winner Lucky Kristale picked up £85,000, Derby added: "Our aspirations are for both the Irish Thoroughbred Marketing Gimcrack Stakes - the most valuable Group 2 juvenile event of the year - and Connolly's Red Mills Lowther to be upgraded to Group 1.

"We and our sponsors have invested significant sums to ensure they are both at Group 1 prize-fund level. The Gimcrack, within European racing, is an equivalent race to the Morny in France.

"That will be a challenging upgrade to achieve but we do hope and think the Lowther is ripe for serious consideration. It's exceeded its Group 1 parameter and this year was another high-quality renewal, so we'll be lobbying for an upgrade come the end of the year."

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