Alpinista hits the heights in Lancashire Oaks

Alpinista stamped her class on the bet365 Lancashire Oaks at Haydock.

Sir Mark Prescott’s filly set the standard on her runner-up finish behind the brilliant Love in the Yorkshire Oaks last summer, after which she was narrowly beaten in a Group Three at Newmarket.

She got the current campaign off to a successful start in a Listed event at Goodwood in April – and having missed a couple of intended engagements since, she was the 11-4 favourite for the Group Two feature.

With front-running Oaks runner-up Mystery Angel beginning to fade inside the final two furlongs, the Roger Varian-trained pair of Cabeletta and Lady Hayes were left fighting it out for the lead.

However, Alpinista picked up well in the hands of her regular partner Luke Morris to win the day by just over a length.

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Morris said: “We’d chosen not to run her a couple of times because of the ground. Today they’ve rolled the dice and she seems to handle firm ground as well as soft ground.

“She was second to Love in the Yorkshire Oaks last year and she’s a Group Two winner now.

“These are the horses you want to ride when you’re getting up early in a morning and getting home late in the evening.”

Prescott’s assistant, William Butler, said: “She’s very game and we’ve trained lots of her family, who were very game as well.

“We were slightly worried about the ground as she was so effective on firm last summer, but her class got her through.

“She’s a Group Two winner, Group One second and dual Listed winner and you can pick your targets now.

“There are races like the Lillie Langtry (at Goodwood) and the Yorkshire Oaks and we’ll make a plan.”

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