Luncies set for Newcastle Cup tilt after trial win

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Kris Lees

English import Luncies made his presence felt when winning a trial at Newcastle on Thursday morning as he looks to follow in his stablemate Mugatoo’s footprints this Spring Carnival.

The five-year-old son of Iffraaj has had just two Australian starts and is already a track-record holder after a brilliant win at Hawkesbury in May when he won a Benchmark 78 over 1800m.

Trained by Kris Lees, Luncies stepped out this morning and won his 1200m trial in impressive fashion, with 3.8 lengths being the official margin.

After being ridden quietly behind the leaders in the field of four, Aaron Bullock presented the grey gelding between runners as they straightened up and allowed him to slide up and put the field to bed comfortably.

Promising @Leesracing import Luncies scores an easy win in a trial at @newcastleraces_ on Thursday from stablemate Winter Thorn and Gumnuts. @tabcomau pic.twitter.com/f1AqgO8W68— Racing NSW (@racing_nsw) July 21, 2021

While Lees’ stable star, Mugatoo, suffered a setback that sees him sidelined for the spring, Luncies will be looking to follow a similar path that the All-Star Mile winner took 12 months ago.

The Newcastle Cup is just under two months away, and after Mugatoo gave Lees his first hometown cup win in 2020, Luncies will be aiming to make it back-to-back wins for the stable in the $200,000 event.

With the Group 3 feature over 2300m right within Luncies reach, the stable have bigger plans in mind a fortnight later in the hope to go one better than what Mugatoo could do last year.

October 2 will see the Group 1 Metropolitan Handicap run and won at Randwick over 2400m.

Mugatoo could only manage second in the $750,000 race last year behind Mirage Dancer, before going on to run fourth in the Cox Plate.

Frankel entire Mirage Dancer gets up in The Metropolitan. 🥇@nashhot at his very best! pic.twitter.com/ZVDUPL8gpd— 7HorseRacing 🐎 (@7horseracing) October 3, 2020

Luncies is currently a $51 chance in the Metropolitan Handicap with BetOnline.

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