Moonrise Landing (Ralph Beckett/Jim Crowley) recorded an impressive victory in the £20,000 32Red Conditions Stakes (8.45pm) at Wolverhampton on Saturday, December 12. The extended two-mile Tapeta contest was a Fast-Track Qualifier for the £150,000 32Red Marathon over two miles at Lingfield Park on All-Weather Championships Finals Day, Good Friday, March 25.
The Peter Savill-owned four-year-old filly, returned the 4/1 second favourite, was held up at the rear of the seven-strong field as Longshadow (Jason Ward/Luke Morris) made the early running.
Three furlongs from home, Godolphin’s Anglophile (Charlie Appleby/Adam Kirby, 6/1) went into a clear lead and looked to have the race in the bag but a strong late run from Moonrise Landing on the inside saw her take up the running entering the final furlong. She stayed on resolutely for a four and a half-length success in 3m 33.34s.
Successful jockey Jim Crowley said: “It worked out really nicely. She settled really well today – when I rode her at Kempton last time she was just wanting to go that half-a-stride quicker but she settled beautifully today.
“It was a bit rough in front of me, they were having a bit of a barging match, but when I kicked her into the gap she went in there and quickened up really well.
“To be honest, she relaxed so well that she was just lobbing round for the first circuit. Obviously, being able to have a change of gear over that trip is a massive help.
“The race on Finals Day could be certainly be the race for her. Now she has shown she stays two miles, it has opened up so many more doors for her.”
Moonrise Landing is now three out of three on all-weather surfaces, having taken a Lingfield Park maiden in April, 2014, and a two-mile handicap at Kempton Park on November 18.
Adam Kirby said of the runner-up Anglophile: “The winner is a nice horse and came past me like a mile and a half horse.
“It surprised me because my lad didn’t stop and coming off the last turn, I thought I had put the race to bed.
“Anglophile is in great form and I think there is still more to come from him.”
Earlier in the evening, the £45,000 Coral Handicap (7.45pm) over an extended nine furlongs went to Godolphin’s Festive Fare (Charlie Appleby/Adam Kirby).
The 9/4 second favourite was held up towards the rear of the nine-strong field before taking up the running inside the final furlong. He stayed on well for a comfortable length and three-quarters success over Charles Camoin (Sylvester Kirk/Luke Morris). The winning time was 1m 57.27s.
Winning rider Adam Kirby said: “He gave me a very nice feeling. That that is why I was praising him up after passing the line to let him know he is a good horse.
“We have held him in very high-regard from the word go and when you get him on this surface he is just different class.
“Charlie has done a really good job with him and hopefully the horse will come forward with this race giving him a bit of confidence.
“He is very at home on the all-weather and is going the right way.”
The three-year-old son of Teofilo, who was running for the first time since being gelded, is now unbeaten in three starts on the all-weather. He previously won a maiden at Kempton Park in January and a handicap at Lingfield Park in February. He also boasts some smart form on turf, having been beaten less than three lengths behind the great Golden Horn when fourth in the Listed Feilden Stakes at Newmarket in April.