Captain Cat, who landed the inaugural Ladbrokes Mile on All-Weather Championships Final Day in 2014, earned his place in the line-up for the 2016 renewal of the £150,000 contest when taking the 32Red Conditions Stakes at Kempton Park tonight.
The 32Red Conditions Stakes, staged over a mile, was a Fast-Track Qualifier for the Ladbrokes Mile on Good Friday, March 25 at Lingfield Park, for which the seven-year-old gains a free and automatic place.
Partnered by Jamie Spencer, the Roger Charlton-trained Captain Cat made every yard of the running tonight. The 11/4 second favourite was strongly pressed entering the final furlong by 4/6 favourite Sloane Avenue (Jeremy Noseda/Jim Crowley) but kept finding more and prevailed by a length. The winning time was 1m 38.35s.
Sirius Prospect (Dean Ivory/Robert Winston, 16/1) was a further four and a half lengths back in third with Solar Deity (Marco Botti/Andrea Atzeni, 7/1) last of the four runners.
Roger Charlton said: “I was thrilled with Captain Cat’s win tonight. I am really pleased as he deserved to win a race after running so consistently.
“We decided to change the tactics by going out in front today and it was very satisfactory that it all worked out.
“He will now head straight to the Ladbrokes Mile on Good Friday at Lingfield Park.”