Sport

Palace Guard to keep 'em at bay in 'Sarge' Bucknor Memorial

By Hurbun Williams Observer writer

Saturday, June 30, 2012    

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Richieshappynotion goes in search of win number three in Overnight Allowance company as he takes on 10 rivals in the $715,000 G A 'Sarge' Bucknor Memorial Cup feature at Caymanas Park today.

The penultimate race on the 11-race card, the 'Sarge' Bucknor has a 5:00 pm probable post with first post at 12:10 pm.

A field of 11 will go postward over 1,000 metres straight and fierce rivalry is anticipated among the runners with only The Gummer looking out of place at this level. Though not an exceptionally strong field it possesses three notable American-bred runners in Richieshappynotion, Sir D and New Kingston, who are quite adept over the course and anyone from this trio can take the event.

Richieshappynotion has twice won from his last four starts, one of which was over the 1,000 metres straight course and in a decent time if 59.1 seconds.

But chasing a hat-trick of wins in his next race he came upon fellow American filly Noon It Is, and his winning run was snapped. He then tried his luck against another American-bred filly, Hupumone and suffered a similar fate.

Trained by Lorne Kirlew for owner Jigzy Blades, Richieshappynotion now faces what appears to be a more manageable bunch of runners and should be in serious contention where it matters most, especially with the added presence jockey Omar Walker, who showed a welcome return to form with a double in midweek.

However, the likes of Mr Skill, who not so long ago won many of his races at this level and higher over the straight course, will also come in for serious consideration although this sharp seven-year-old bay gelding is not the force of yesteryear. He still, however, carries quicksilver in his legs and should they not fail him in the drive the Americans may have to take a back seat and watch him go.

Sir D in his last effort over the course 10 months ago failed narrowly, but trainer Gary Subratie will present the four-year-old Concerto chestnut colt in good competitive shape to once again take a serious hand in the finish.

And following two fine efforts with a victory and a second place finish by Sir D some three weeks ago jockey Shane Ellis will continue aboard the seasoned Overnight Allowance campaigner.

Then there is the four-year-old bay filly Saint Theresa, the mount of champion jockey Dick Cardenas, who will be attempting the course for the first time but will do so in really good shape and with only a feather to tote, she should be doing her best work in the closing stages.

So too will be chestnut filly Palace Guard. A consistent and capable campaigner at this level, who has not won a race in more than a year now looks cherry ripe for a good one. Trained by Fitzroy Glispie for breeder/owner Hayden C Thomas, Palace Guard by Region Of Merit out of Royal Guard (Royal Minister), having finished ahead of Richieshappynotion in their clash with Hupumone on June 9 should once again take full advantage of the 47.0kg apprentice claim of Conrod Ellis to break a lean spell.

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