Voyage steps up to Listed level for Burradon test

James Tate’s Final Voyage will bid to extend his unbeaten run in the Listed Burradon Stakes at Newcastle on Friday.

The three-year-old was victorious on his last four starts on the all-weather, a winning streak that began in October last year and culminated in a half-length success at Wolverhampton in late February.

Friday’s contest represents a step-up in calibre for the son of Camacho, but Tate is hopeful that the colt can rise to the challenge and retain his form.

“He’s been a great horse for us over the winter,” he said.

“He’s won his last four and he’s five from six on the all-weather. Obviously it’s a step up in grade, but he’s been in very good form and he deserves to take his chance.”

Final Voyage will face only three rivals in the one-mile contest, but he has more runs under his belt than any other entrant having competed in eight races.

“He’s a very experienced horse, he knows exactly what to do,” his trainer said.

“I’d say he’d be tactically able to do whatever he needs to to give him the race, it’s just a question of whether he can step his form up again.

“He hasn’t disappointed us for the last four runs and I think he is unlucky not to be unbeaten on the all-weather, so we are very much looking forward to the race and as I say, he deserves to take his chance, so let’s see what happens.”

Final Voyage has run only twice on turf and was beaten on both occasions, leaving his Newmarket-based trainer pondering a future trip overseas.

“He has very few options because he appears to not go on the grass at all, so there are about two races on the all-weather in May and that’s about it,” he said.

“There really aren’t many options, we could even give him a break and wait for the autumn races, unless we think about racing him on dirt in a different country.

“We’ve been getting him ready for this race for a while, we’ve had it in mind and obviously he’s got to step up and he’s a bit of an outsider, but we’re certainly looking forward to the race.”

John and Thady Gosden’s Megallan will be Final Voyage’s main rival, with the Kingman colt beaten just a short head in the Listed Spring Cup at Lingfield on his last outing.

Roger Varian runs Legion Of Honour, who was a winner when last seen triumphing by a two and a quarter lengths over seven furlongs at Newcastle in November.

Making up the field of four is Mark Johnston’s Ghost Rider, who also returns to the scene of his latest victory having won at the track in a seven-furlong novice contest in February.