Riviera weekend in store for Bowerman

McGuinness miler out to book Good Friday slot.

  • Wednesday 12 February
  • News
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Ado McGuinness is taking Bowerman all the way from his Dublin base down to the South of France in the hope of clinching a place in the all-weather championships at Lingfield on Good Friday.

The six-year-old will take his chance in a Listed race over a mile at Cagnes-sur-Mer on Saturday, on the back of two victories at Dundalk.

McGuinness is hoping to break new ground on two fronts, because he has never had a runner in France or won a Listed race.

“We had him gelded, and it’s made a big difference to him,” said the Lusk trainer.

“We got a little bit delayed by the weather, but we gave ourselves plenty of time – and he should be there tomorrow (Thursday) evening.

“I’ve never won a Listed race myself yet. Any nice black-type horses we have, are usually sold.”

Bowerman appears to be in the mood to put that right, though, having won twice last month – including when put up in trip to 10 and a half furlongs on the second occasion.

McGuinness added: “He’s in great form. We found this race down there, and he’s the highest-rated horse in the race.

“It’s on the all-weather track, so we said we’d give it a go. It’s a free entry to Lingfield if he wins, but he’ll go to Lingfield either way.

“It looks a winnable race, so fingers crossed we’ll maybe have a winner with our first runner in France.

“It’s over a mile, and that’s one of the reasons we’re going there. It was that or go back to Dundalk over seven furlongs. We saw this and thought we might put some black type on our CV as well.

“It’s a good opportunity. I know it’s a long drive down – but this horse is a rock-solid traveller, and we’re very happy.”

Bowerman also has an entry in the Unibet Lincoln at Doncaster on March 28, but the ground would have to dry out and the weather warm up for him to take his chance there.

“He has an entry in the Lincoln. He’s a little lower-rated on the grass, but we’d be really dependent on ground,” said McGuinness.

“At Doncaster it would have to be quickish ground – but at that time of the year, the way the weather is and the grass growth, I can’t see us getting a heatwave between now and Doncaster.

“We were there last year with Saltonstall and we learnt a lot, but the surface that time of year is never as nice as it is two months after that.”

Looking even further ahead, McGuinness has the Royal Hunt Cup at Royal Ascot as a long-term objective for Bowerman.

“Potentially he could be a Royal Hunt Cup horse,” he said.

“That’s another possibility for him later on in the year. We’d gear him for that.

“After Lingfield, we’ll prepare him for Ascot. Off his rating on grass, he’d have a good chance in that.”

Riviera weekend in store for Bowerman
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