All-Weather Championships Media Release - Surrounding faces 13 rivals in Fast-Track Qualifier at Dundalk tomorrow
The 60,000 euros Listed Al Basti Equiworld Irish EBF Cooley Fillies Stakes (7.45pm, 14 runners), run over a mile, is a Fast-Track Qualifier for the first time and provides the winner with a guaranteed start in the 150,000 pounds Ladbrokes Fillies & Mares' Championship at Lingfield Park on All-Weather Championships Finals Day, Good Friday, April 10, 2020.
Talented filly Surrounding won the Al Basti Equiworld Irish EBF Cooley Fillies Stakes decisively 12 months ago and the Mick Halford-trained filly has progressed again on turf in 2019.
The hardy six-year-old has landed a further three stakes races, most notably the seven-furlong G3 Brownstown Stakes at Fairyhouse in July.
She also captured Listed events at Naas in May and the Galway Festival in August. Surrounding, who shoulders a 5lb penalty for her Fairyhouse success, was not disgraced on her latest start when fifth, beaten just over three lengths, in the G2 Boomerang Mile at Leopardstown on Irish Champions Weekend, September 14.
Halford said: "Surrounding has been an absolute star for us this season. She did her final bit of work on Tuesday morning and I was very happy with her.
"She loves Dundalk and has done nothing but improve all year and while she has to give weight to all her rivals, she is so reliable, that I am sure that she will run a big race.
"She has been a wonderful servant and it would be a great way to finish off the season by winning again on Friday."
Joseph O'Brien has five runners in opposition, including G3 runner-up Snapraeceps (Declan McDonogh) and Dancing On A Dream (Mark Gallagher).
The Peter Savill-owned Dancing On A Dream looked a much improved filly when switched to the All-Weather on her latest start, taking a seven-furlong handicap at Dundalk by three lengths on October 11.
O'Brien's runners also include Cnoc An Oir (Shane Crosse) and Jumellea (Trevor Whelan), who both ran well in Listed contests last time out, as well as recent Dundalk handicap runner-up Crotchet (Gary Halpin).
Joseph's father Aidan O'Brien is represented by Galileo fillies Chablis (Rory Cleary) and Frosty (Killian Hennessy).
Chablis has been highly tried this year, with the pick of her efforts coming when fourth in the G3 Munster Oaks at Cork in June, while Frosty took sixth in a Listed race at Naas last time out.
Khalid Abdullah's representative Kaftan (Ger Lyons/Colin Keane) shaped with promise on her return from a break when fifth behind She's A Babe (Aidan Fogarty/Andrew Slattery) in a seven-furlong handicap at Dundalk on October 4.
G3 Diamond Stakes sixth Harriet's Force (Keith Clarke/Robbie Colgan) also runs, as does Come September (Gavin Cromwell/Gary Carroll), who turns out quickly after finishing fifth in a seven-furlong Listed race at Leopardstown on October 26.
The 14 runners are completed by Titanium Sky (Dermot Weld/Oisin Orr), who finished second behind Surrounding in a Listed race at Galway, and course scorer Festina Plente (Johnny Murtagh/Niall McCullagh).
Dundalk's eight-race card starts at 5.15pm and ends at 8.45pm.
About the All-Weather Championships Season seven of the All-Weather Championships runs from Tuesday, October 22, 2019 and culminates with All-Weather Championships Finals Day on Good Friday, April 10, 2020 at Lingfield Park.
The seven races on All-Weather Championships Finals Day are worth a total of 1 million pounds. The season seven information pack can be downloaded by clicking this link and scrolling down to the bottom of the page: All-weather-explained
The six championship categories are:
150,000 pounds Three-Year-Olds sponsored by Ladbrokes - 6f Final
150,000 pounds Fillies & Mares sponsored by Ladbrokes - 7f Final
150,000 pounds Mile sponsored by Bombardier - 1m Final
150,000 pounds Sprint sponsored by Betway - 6f Final 150,000 pounds Marathon sponsored by Betway - 2m Final
200,000 pounds Middle Distance sponsored Betway - 10f Final There are two ways for horses to qualify for one of the finals on All-Weather Championships Finals Day at Lingfield Park: *
A horse can win a 'Fast Track Qualifier' race which will ensure a FREE and GUARANTEED place in the corresponding final on Good Friday.
There are four Fast Track Qualifiers in each of the six Championship Categories hosted at racecourses in Great Britain, Ireland and France.
If a filly wins any of the Fast-Track Qualifier races for either the Sprint or the Mile categories, the filly will be qualified for the final of that specific category, or for the Fillies and Mares Final. or * A horse must run a minimum of three times on the All-Weather surfaces in Great Britain, Ireland and France; or twice on the All-Weather surfaces in Great Britain, Ireland, France and once on dirt in Dubai during the qualifying period between October 22, 2019 and the six-day entry stage for the finals (Saturday, April 4, 2020) and then be rated high enough to 'make the cut' in a final by order of its BHA Rating.
The 24 Fast-Track Qualifiers are scheduled as follows: Category Date Racecourse Dist Race Winner 3YO 22 Oct 2019 Newcastle 6f Conditions Temple Of Heaven (Richard Hannon/Sean Levey
FILLIES & MARES 31 Oct 2019 Lingfield Park 8f Listed (Fleur De Lys)
FILLIES & MARES 01 Nov 2019 Dundalk (IRE) 8f Listed (Cooley)
SPRINT 16 Nov 2019 Lingfield Park 6f Listed (Golden Rose)
MIDDLE DISTANCE 16 Nov 2019 Lingfield Park 10f Listed (Churchill) MILE 20 Nov 2019 Kempton Park 8f Listed (Hyde)
MIDDLE DISTANCE 28 Nov 2019 Deauville (FR) 9.5f Listed (Lyphard) 3YO 07 Dec 2019 Wolverhampton 6f Conditions
MARATHON 14 Dec 2019 Newcastle 16f Conditions
FILLIES & MARES 03 Jan 2020 Wolverhampton 7f Conditions
MILE 08 Jan 2020 Newcastle 8f Conditions
SPRINT 08 Jan 2020 Newcastle 5f Conditions
MARATHON 13 Jan 2020 Wolverhampton 16f Conditions 3YO 20 Jan 2020 Kempton Park 6f Conditions
SPRINT 01 Feb 2020 Lingfield Park 6f Listed (Cleves)
MIDDLE DISTANCE 01 Feb 2020 Lingfield Park 10f Listed (W D Trial)
FILLIES & MARES 13 Feb 2020 Chelmsford City 8f Conditions
MILE 15 Feb 2020 Cagnes-sur-Mer (FR) 8f Listed (Saonois)
MARATHON 16 Feb 2020 Kempton Park 16f Conditions
MIDDLE DISTANCE 22 Feb 2020 Lingfield Park 10f Group 3 (Winter Derby) 3YO 29 Feb 2020 Lingfield Park 7f Listed (Spring Cup)
SPRINT 03 Mar 2020 Chantilly (FR) 6f Conditions
MARATHON 07 Mar 2020 Chelmsford City 16f Conditions
MILE 07 Mar 2020 Wolverhampton 7f Listed (Lady Wulfruna)
In addition to the fantastic prize money on offer, up to 10,000 pounds will go to each of the All-Weather Champions - the 'All Stars' - based on the number of winners at the end of the All-Weather Championships season:
Champion All-Weather Jockey (8,000 pounds to the winner /2,000 pounds to the runner-up)
Champion All-Weather Apprentice Jockey (4,000 pounds to the winner/1,000 pounds to the runner-up)
Champion All-Weather Trainer (10,000 pounds)
Champion All-Weather Owner (10,000 pounds)
Winning Most All-Weather Horse (10,000 pounds)
All-Weather Horse Of The Year (based on prize money won during the Championships) (10,000 pounds)