ANNIKE BYE HANSEN
Wins on second 2020 outing
Aconcagua steps right up
18 Jun 20: Aconcagua was winless in 2019, but 2020 has begun so much better for Stall Unik's talented gelding. He was a good fifth when making his seasonal debut two weeks ago, and that run put him right for a winning performance in Norsk Forening For Fullblodsavl Handicap, run over 1370 metres on the turf course. Finishing his race off in a game manner under top rider Alan Wallace, Aconcagua won by half a length from Pirlo, a contender coming off a close second to Kildare on his previous start. This was Aconcagua's third career win and he has finished in the first three in 10 of his 26 races. His stable companion Al Buraq, seemingly about to regain form, finished fourth in the same contest.
Aconcagua - on a handy mark
Aconcagua, who was sporting the very respectable handicap mark 81 back in 2017 – after running second in the Breeders' Prize Sprint over 1370 metres on Øvrevoll's turf course – went winless through 2019. Five runs with no visits to the winners' enclosure was of course a bit disappointing, but the now six-year-old gelding by Thewayyouare managed a third place finish on his penultimate start in 2019, as he was beaten just over a length behind Girlforce One in a handicap over 1100 metres on the dirt track in November. Ridden by Dale Swift, he showed useful form on that occasion and, given that Aconcagua has now slipped down to 68kg in the handicap, he is a horse approaching the new season on a handy mark. An experienced sprint/miler, he has also run respectably over 2400 metres on a couple of occasions. Aconcagua was a smart juvenile back in 2016, when he won Skandinavisk Mesterskap for 2-Åringer and followed up with another valuable win in Norsk Auksjonsløp on his next outing, both over 1370 metres on the lawn. He acts on turf and dirt, though it's worth noting that all but one of his starts last year came on the latter surface. GS 18 Feb 20