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Wednesday, 23 January, 2019

Bargain buy Alexandra bidding to reach £100,000 in earnings on landmark run

Alexandrakollontai with her connections after winning at Carlisle in 2015
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Little did owners Chris Spark and William Orr know when they went to £5,000 to buy Alexandrakollontai out of a Wolverhampton claimer in 2012 that they would be in possession of a horse poised to reach £100,000 in career earnings as she makes her 100th start at Newcastle on Friday (5.15).

Like all good stories, fate played its part, as the pair tried to purchase the winner that day but ended up with the mare and sent her to Scottish Borders trainer Alistair Whillans, where she has racked up £99,523 in prize-money.

5.15 Newcastle card and betting

"She's won every year and has had some good days, winning the Flower of Scotland Fillies' Handicap at Hamilton twice," said Whillans' son and assistant Ewan.

Alexandrakollontai, who could be put in foal early next year, might be approaching nine but she is holding her form well with two victories in her last five starts, including a 33-1 surprise over course and distance in September.

"The best thing to happen to her Newcastle's opening as she loves it there," said Whillans. "She's had a little break after two quick runs, is in good fettle and should be in the mix. She's not easy to judge as I've seen her bouncing at home and run terribly, and then she's been flat as a pancake and won."

One of Alexandrakollontai's 14 victories was particularly memorable for Whillans, who said: "It was this race two years ago and I was just arriving in Liverpool on a stag-do with some Scottish lads. Everyone backed her and she won at 22-1 – the bus was rocking back and forth."

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She's won every year and has had some good days, winning the Flower of Scotland Fillies' Handicap twice
E.W. Terms
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