Tarooq landed the feature £45,000 Compare Bookmakers At bookmakers.co.uk Handicap at Lingfield Park, on Wednesday 18 December 2013, setting a new course record of 1m 8.75s for the six-furlong course.
All of the first six horses home bettered the previous track record of 1m 9.42s set by Valbchek on 16 November.
Making his second appearance for North Yorkshire trainer David Barron, the seven-year-old was settled eighth of the 12-strong field before being delivered with a challenge two furlongs from home by Graham Gibbons.
The winner, returned at 7/1, took the lead entering the final furlong and ran on well to repel the strong late challenge of Scottish raider Hawkeyethenoo (5/1) by a length and a half, with 5/2 favourite Lancelot Du Lac a further neck back in third.
The son of War Chant was winning for the fourth time on the Polytrack at Lingfield Park. Graham Gibbons said: “They played into his hands as they went very, very quick. I just stayed on the inside. I got a nice run round and he has done it well.
“I knew I wouldn’t be able to be anywhere else from where he was drawn (4). He takes a while to warm up but he knows his way around.
“I knew he would come on from his first run for us because we hadn’t done a lot with him. He is quite smart around here.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if he kept going on the all-weather. It’s up for David to decide.
“This was another step up for him. I don’t think he has to be tucked up that he was today, it was just the way the race unfurled for him.”
Tarooq is now eligible for the new £1-million All-Weather Championships Final Day, having previously run on 26 October at Wolverhampton and at Kempton Park on 21 November (on his first start for Barron).
Horses qualify for the six championship contests on the new £1-million All-Weather Championships Finals Day (Good Friday, 18 April, 2014) by winning a specified “Fast Track Qualifier” or running in a minimum of three races at Britain’s All-Weather tracks – three owned by ARC, Lingfield Park, Southwell and Wolverhampton, and The Jockey Club’s Kempton Park – between 26 October and 12 April.
The next Sprint Fast Track Qualifier for horses aged four plus is the £37,000 Listed Compare Bookmakers At bookmakers.co.uk Cleves Stakes over six furlongs at Lingfield Park on Saturday, 22 February 2014.
The Sprint All-Weather Championships final is the £150,000 bookmakers.co.uk Stakes over six furlongs at Lingfield Park on Good Friday.