Spare Parts and Captain Lars set up thrilling final day in all-weather battle
Neither Spare Parts nor Captain Lars could add a remarkable eighth win of the campaign at Lingfield on Saturday, but their failure to do so has set up a thrilling climax in the race to be crowned winning-most horse of the all-weather season as it now heads down to the wire on Good Friday.
Bargain buy Spare Parts finished an honourable fifth in the mile handicap, just 35 minutes before Captain Lars took what could be a crucial fourth in the 5f sprint handicap.
Both have seven wins for the season to the their name and with countback on places going down to fourth, the pair now have identical placed records of two seconds, two thirds and a fourth, meaning the £10,000 prize would be shared if both finish outside of the first four on Good Friday.
Phil McEntee, trainer of Spare Parts, said: “They went hard up front and Nicola Currie just felt they were getting impeded all the way to the line, otherwise he probably would have been third. It's all systems go for Friday.
“We want to run in the apprentice handicap at Lingfield but he’s got entries in the sprint and mile races in case he didn’t get into the handicap and, no matter what, we’ll have a day out and celebrate the winter we’ve had with him.
“He’s been brilliant for us, the yard and the whole all-weather campaign.”
Spare Parts does hold an entry at Southwell on Tuesday, but McEntee said it was unlikely he would head there before Friday.
Captain Lars, himself a bargain having been claimed for £7,000 by trainer Archie Watson with three all-weather wins already in the bag in February, is off to Newcastle for a 5f handicap on Friday as he bids for one last win on the last day of the winter season.
Watson said: “All being well we go to Newcastle now. We’ll do very little in between as he’s very straightforward.
"When I bought him he was on three wins and Phil’s horse was already on five so we never really thought about this but he’s been a great buy and, whatever happens, I think he’ll have a good campaign on the turf.”
Watson also has one eye on the £10,000 prize for leading all-weather trainer and drew level with Mick Appleby on 35 wins apiece as Attain landed the 1m4f handicap on the same Lingfield card under Pierre-Louis Jamin.
“Friday will be busy with three runners here and six at Newcastle,” he said.
“Mick’s had more seconds than me but I’d be hopeful we can grab a couple of winners on Friday. If we can bring home one of the prizes I’d be delighted.”
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