All-Weather Champion Jockey Luke Morris Marks Your AWC Finals Card
We’ve reached the end of the winter all-weather season and I’m absolutely thrilled to have retained my title as champion jockey. At the start of the winter the plan was to ride as many winners as I could and try to be champion jockey. Along with that I wanted to ride a few nice winners as well, which I have been able to do on the likes of Lamar and Don’t Be.
It’s been a really good winter overall and I’ve been lucky to have plenty of support from people like Sir Mark [Prescott], James Tate, Tony Carroll and Mark Loughnane, who’s had plenty of winners himself this winter, and plenty of others as well, so I like to offer them a huge thank you. It’s always really pleasing to hit your target and being champion jockey was that target. There are plenty of good riders on the all-weather during the winter so to come out on top is a big achievement.
Hopefully being champion again will give me a bit of a springboard into the turf season ahead, but for today I’m focusing on Finals Day at Lingfield and hoping I can grab at least one winner, which I did last year on Lightscameraction.
Primrose Valley – 1.40 Lingfield
She was second favourite for the 3 Year Old Sprint last year and she was in great form then. She seems to have lost her way a little since, but she’s been tried in the blinkers at home by her trainer Ed Vaughan and I know he’s hoping for a big run. On the figures it’s going to be very tough to beat Cold As Ice but I think my horse has got a solid each-way chance in this race. She’s a really lively outsider and I can see her running and big race and being involved in the finish. We’ve got a nice draw in four, whereas Cold As Ice is wide in stall ten, and the first-time blinkers on so hopefully she can get out well and put up a bold show.
It’s frustrating that he’s got the coffin box draw out widest of all as he’s in really good order. Life is going to be very difficult for him from that gate when we’re already trying to stretch his stamina out to get the six furlongs. He’s capable of running a big race, he’s got the talent and it was a great performance to win last time, but he’s going to need a slice of luck in what’s a real competitive race.
Royal Marskell – 2.40 Lingfield
He’s done nothing but improve since he moved to trainer Gay Kelleway and he seems to have fallen in love with the Polytrack around Lingfield as well. The step up in trip to two miles shouldn’t pose any problems in my mind and, while he’s got a bit to find on the figures, I can see him running reasonably well and picking up a bit of prize-money, which goes all the way down to sixth.
Forceful Appeal – 3.10 Lingfield
He loves Lingfield and that is something he has in his favour. He’s had a good winter and been in good form winning a couple of times. He’s another that on the figures he has a fair bit to find with the likes of Mindurownbusiness and Sovereign Debt and it looks a really competitive contest. He’s one that likes to be held up off the pace so I’ll be looking to bring him through in the straight and try and nick as many places late on as I can and as much prize-money as possible with him.
He’s been dealt the widest draw of all like Lightscameraction and from stall ten we’ll probably have to tuck in behind the leaders and ride a bit of race on him from there. He was disappointing in the Winter Derby last time but he subsequently came back with a dirty scope so that explains that run. If he comes back to the form of last year he has a real shout but he has questions to answer on his form this season. Trainer Paul Cole feels the horse is in good form though and his seasonal reappearance was a decent enough run over a mile, which would have been sharp enough. If he comes back to the form of last year he could well in the shake up and at a decent price as well.
Krystallite – 4.15 Lingfield
She’s a filly that’s very sharp from the traps and she’s also very tough and honest, which are great qualities. She’s drawn in stall one and that will help her style of running. She has plenty to find on the figures but I’m sure she’ll run better than her mark and her price suggests she might.
Bear Faced – 4.45 Lingfield
He wears cheekpieces for the first time in this race and he’s not got a great deal to find with some of the others. I’ve always felt that he would be a horse that would improve for going a mile and he steps up to that trip for the first time in this race. I think he has a real live shout. The only little doubt in my mind is that it’s his fifth run in seven weeks and I hope that doesn’t affect him. He’s a tough, hardy horse though and he can run a really big race if those runs haven’t caught up with him.