Rugby League: Right Wing lands gamble

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RIGHT WING landed a tub-thumping gamble from 9-1 to 9-2 when winning the Lincoln Handicap at Doncaster yesterday. Favourites do not often win the first leg of the Spring Double - the Grand National is the second leg. Cataldi, in 1985, was the last market leader to do so - and then only after the handicapper had done Cataldi the almighty favour of ignoring his fourth place in the previous season's Champion Stakes when framing the weights.

Right Wing did not win as easily as that six-length victor, but the five- year-old, who has to be held up until the last possible moment, was always travelling well for Richard Quinn. He gave the winner, third to Hunters Of Brora in the race last year, a peach of a ride, producing him to lead a 100 yards from the line to beat Captain Scott who, sent off at 6-1 after also attracting hefty support, had led at the furlong pole. Night Of Glass was third and Raheen fourth.

Quinn, winner of the Lincoln two years ago on Kuala Lipis, said: "He's a horse that travels well and as long as you can find the right horse to follow, it's no problem. He's genuine and does go through with his effort, though he tends to stop when he hits the front."

John Dunlop, Right Wing's trainer, is in Dubai, but Robert Hamilton, his assistant, said: "Maybe Right Wing is stronger than he was last year and you'll see him in all the big handicaps like the Newbury Spring Cup, the Hunt Cup and Golden Mile."

Jeremy Glover, Captain Scott's trainer, said: "I think he's better over one and a quarter miles, held up and coming late."

Tertium threatened briefly before finishing eighth and Nick Littmoden, his trainer, said: "He's blown up, but that will put him straight and he will now go for the Jubilee at Kempton."

The bookmakers William Hill said many who received a pounds 20 free bet due to Hills' aborted stock exchange floatation were half way to a windfall after Right Wing's success. A spokesman said: "Thousands have pounds 110 running on to their Grand National selection - many have opted for Double Thriller."

Results, Dubai card, page 9