Yuften to win the Lincoln as flat season opens at Doncaster

Doncaster Racecourse, where the new Flat season opens on Saturday
Doncaster Racecourse, where the new Flat season opens on Saturday

Yuften can quicken pulses on the first day of the Flat turf season by winning the Betway Lincoln at Doncaster.

Trainer Roger Charlton has never won the big handicap in South Yorkshire, but the six-year-old gelding must have a cracking chance of righting that particular wrong.

The son of Invincible Spirit is a good horse, but he is already a chiselled operator in rough-and-tumble races like this.

Note his performance at Ascot last autumn for further details as he ever so gamely accounted for 18 other rivals to win the Balmoral Handicap on Champions Day.

It is interesting Charlton and Yuften’s owners, Saleh Al Homaizi and Imad Al Sagar, have had the Lincoln in mind all winter, during which time he was gelded.

Be that as it may, a deviation from the gameplan might have been necessary had he won on his return at Wolverhampton on March 11.

The Beckhampton inmate finished a close third in the Listed Lady Wulfruna Stakes, but victory would have made him eligible to run on All-Weather Finals Day at Lingfield on Good Friday.

That obvious allure would have been difficult to resist, but it does mean Yuften runs in the Lincoln without a penalty for winning at Wolverhampton.

And though he races at Doncaster on a higher mark than at Ascot, he looks strong enough and progressive enough to manfully overcome that burden.

This could be a big season for Yuften, about whom Charlton is probably only really getting to know following his transfer from Ireland last September.

The ground will also be fine for him, with the reappointment of Doncaster shrewdie Andrea Atzeni hardly off-putting.

This season’s renewal of the Betway Doncaster Mile looks strong, but there could be some mileage in going back to basics by supporting good old Tullius.

Andrew Balding’s nine-year-old does not fall into the ‘unexposed’ category, of course, but he often goes well as a fresh horse and won this Listed race two years ago.

Although last season rather tapered off for him, conditions at Doncaster should be just about ideal for Tullius, who should never be underestimated - no matter what the opposition.

Birchwood’s form at his best is not a great deal shy of being top class.

With that very much in mind, he is fancied to make a winning comeback in the Betway Cammidge Trophy.

SELECTIONS:

DONCASTER: 1.50 Birchwood, 2.25 Examiner, 3.00 Tullius, 3.35 YUFTEN (NAP), 4.10 Almane, 4.45 Move To The Front, 5.20 Hold Sway, 5.50 Take Two.

KEMPTON: 1.30 Wefait, 2.05 Viren’s Army, 2.40 Go Far, 3.15 Prince Of Arran, 3.50 Global Alexander, 4.25 Dolphin Village, 5.00 Glan Y Gors.

CHELMSFORD: 5.45 Pool House, 6.15 Highland Cradle, 6.45 Masterson, 7.15 Seamster, 7.45 Carigrad, 8.15 La Casa Tarifa, 8.45 Nasri.

DOUBLE: Yuften and Birchwood.