The Lockinge Stakes is the feature race at Newbury on Saturday and the Group 1 headlines the weekend action – with superstar Baaeed back in action. We have analysed this year’s Lockinge field, providing a runner-by-runner preview and big race verdict. Check this out below, alongside a new customer sign-up at Betfred, who are offering a Bet £10 – Get £60 In Free Bets Bonus.
Al Shaqab Lockinge Stakes (1m, Newbury, Saturday, May 14th 2022)
1. BAAEED (William Haggas, Jim Crowley) 1/2
Exceptional colt who was unbeaten in six starts last season, claiming Group 1 honours in the Prix du Moulin at Longchamp before confirming himself to be the best miler in training when beating last year’s Lockinge winner Palace Pier in the Queen Elizabeth II on British Champions Day. This has always been his early-season target on the back of that, and he reappears with connections firing in plenty of winners. Very difficult to beat if bringing anywhere near his A-game to the table.
2. CHINDIT (Richard Hannon, Pat Dobbs) 18/1
Winner of the Greenham over 7f here last April and followed that with a trio of fifth-place finishes in Group 1 races over a mile (2000 Guineas, St James’s Palace, Jacques le Marois). Drop to Group 2 level didn’t really bring about an improvement in form subsequently, but he slipped even further into Listed company for seasonal reappearance when landing the four-runner Doncaster Mile. Back up markedly in class here and significant improvement is required.
3. ETONIAN (Richard Hannon, Rossa Ryan) 100/1
Looked like a very smart prospect as a juvenile, beating the useful One Ruler at Sandown before claiming the Group 3 Solario Stakes back at that track. Subsequent form figures read 12, 7, 9, however, with the drop into handicap company at Newbury last month failing to bring about a revival. Pat Dobbs now jumps ship and it’s impossible to make claims for him in this company.
4. NEW MANDATE (Ralph Beckett, Richard Kingscote) 20/1
Three-time juvenile winner, including in the Group 2 Royal Lodge, before failing to provide his true running when down the field in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf. Sole start as a 3yo resulted in yet another heavy defeat in the Jersey Stakes at Royal Ascot, but he bounced back in good fashion when landing a four-runner Listed race at Ascot last month; Sir Busker behind. Less exposed than some of these and his juvenile form suggests he’s probably up to this level, so place possibilities.
5. REAL WORLD (Saeed bin Suroor, Daniel Tudhope) 9/1
Demolished a hot field in the Royal Hunt Cup last summer and he went on to win his next four outings, claiming Group 2s in France and Dubai. Winning sequence ended in the Saudi Cup subsequently, and once again beaten a long way on dirt in the Dubai World Cup after that. Return to turf is a huge plus, however, and he’s currently 5-5 on grass, winning on a variety of surfaces. If you can forgive those recent efforts he’s absolutely no forlorn hope here.
6. SIR BUSKER (William Knight, Hollie Doyle) 66/1
Has been a really admirable sort down the years for all that he hasn’t actually won since landing the inaugural Silver Royal Hunt Cup back in 2020; losing run at 18. Failed to take advantage of what looked like a good opportunity dropped to Listed level at his beloved Ascot last month when a neck behind New Mandate. This is far tougher and he lacks the scope for improvement that his rivals possess; easily swerved.
7. SUNRAY MAJOR (John & Thady Gosden, Frankie Dettori) 33/1
Beautifully-bred Juddmonte home-bred who’s a half-brother to the exceptional miler Kingman. Clearly not at the level of his illustrious sibling but he was twice a winner last season (including in a competitive Ascot handicap) before finishing a beaten favourite in the Balmoral on British Champions Day. Upped to Group 2 level for seasonal reappearance when beating just the one home in the bet365 Mile; Alcohol Free two places in front of him. Interesting that connections persist with Group races on the back of that, but he’s shown nothing so far to suggest that he’s up to this level.
8. ALCOHOL FREE (Andrew Balding, Rob Hornby) 16/1
Winner of the Fred Darling at this track last April and went on to claim Group 1 honours in both the Coronation Stakes and the Sussex Stakes. 3yo campaign ended on something of a damp squib with a heavy defeat to Baaeed in the QEII, but sporting of connections to subsequently keep her in training as a 4yo. Hood fitted for reappearance in last month’s bet365 Mile, but despite being sent off the 7/4F she was beaten 2l into third. Headgear is now removed but she’s a risky proposition at present.
9. MOTHER EARTH (Aidan O’Brien, Ryan Moore) 6/1
Campaigned heavily as a 3yo, landing the 1000 Guineas and the Group 1 Prix Rothschild. Not disgraced when fifth to Baaeed in the QEII but she was beaten over 3l that day. Back from a couple of international runs, she justified odds-on favouritism in a Curragh Group 3 earlier this year, winning a shade workmanlike but getting the job done. That victory did come against her own sex though, as have all her career wins to date.
Lockinge Stakes Verdict
It’s incredibly difficult to look past BAAEED here, who has looked exceptional in his brief career on the track, claiming the scalp of Palace Pier in the QEII when last seen. Ease in surface certainly doesn’t inconvenience him and connections have long reported this race to be his early-season target, so don’t expect to see him come here too undercooked. No shortage of place possibilities with New Mandate in particular interesting having won on seasonal reappearance last month, but Real World is the one expected to put it up most to the selection if the return to the turf as expected brings about an improvement in form.
- Real World
- New Mandate
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