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Thursday, 13 December, 2018

What the trainers say about their Pinnacle Stakes runners

Ajman Princess bids to continue her upward curve at Haydock on Saturday
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3.30 Haydock
Betway Pinnacle Stakes | 1m4f | G3 | ITV4/RUK

Roger Varian, who sent out Ferdoos (2011) and Shimmering Surf (2012) to land back-to-back renewals of this prestigious middle-distance event for fillies, saddles likely favourite Ajman Princess, winner of both her starts the year in impressive fashion.


She has ten rivals to tackle, including a couple from overseas. Bateel is now trained in France by Francis Graffard after landing a Newmarket Listed event for David Simcock last summer, while Island Remede is an intriguing first runner on the Flat in Britain for County Waterford-based Henry de Bromhead. We popped a few questions to the travelling trainers.

What shape is your runner in? 
Francis Graffard (Bateel) I was delighted with her seasonal comeback in France. She's in very good form.
Henry de Bromhead (Island Remede) She seems in good form and it looks a suitable race for her.

Did she travel over well?
She arrived at Haydock on Thursday night. She had a good trip over in the horsebox, has settled in well, and looks in great shape.
HdB Yes. She’s fine.

Will she like the ground?
We’ve been trying to find some soft ground for her, so hopefully conditions will be suitable.
HdB She’s pretty adaptable regarding the ground. She won over hurdles at Limerick on soft ground in December.

What chance does she have?
I couldn’t be happier with her. She’s a good mare and it looks a good opportunity for her.
HdB She was a good second in a Cork Listed race last time. I’m hopeful she'll run well.

What the others say

Roger Varian, trainer of Ajman Princess
She's a very talented filly who put the race to bed in fine style at Goodwood. She was second in the Ribblesdale Stakes on easy ground, but Haydock looks set to be very testing on Saturday and deep conditions would be a question mark.

David Simcock, trainer of Chinoiseries
She’s ready to start back and will probably improve for it, although she'll enjoy the ground. I expect her to outrun her odds.

James Fanshawe, trainer of Return Ace
It’s her first run of the season and she’s up in grade, but she loves soft ground, which is why she's running. She’s progressive and hopefully can get some black type.

Ed de Giles, trainer of Lucy The Painter
She stays a mile and a quarter easy enough so I’m hopeful she’ll get the trip. It looks the right race for her at the distance. She handles any ground but would probably prefer it slightly better.

John Butler, trainer of Zain Arion
She has a bit to find on ratings but her homework has been good and she’ll love the ground. I’m quite hopeful.

She's a very talented filly who put the race to bed in fine style at Goodwood
E.W. Terms
Sky bet