THE ANALYSIS – THE AWARDS for Saturday, August 17, 2019


THE ANALYSIS – THE AWARDS for Saturday, August 17, 2019

Friday, August 23, 2019

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In the opener, trainer Wayne DaCosta's Stranger Danger was presented for another exhibition gallop which turned out to be more impressive than the previous six. Jockey Omar Walker's post-race interview was very revealing as he indicated that essentially he did not want the ultra-talented US-bred colt out of a canter down the backstretch, still, the clock showed 1:10.4 at the end of 1,200 metres.

Only coming off the bridle at the top of the stretch to go into top gear as part of his continuous schooling process Stranger Danger, toting 57.0 kilos, posted a fast time 1:30.3 for the 1,500 metres of the Open Allowance event. Significantly, this was just over the tick of a second outside the track record 1:29.2 clocking set by Sky Train on May 07, 1983 with only 44 kilos involving apprentice Everton Miller on a track with far less surface cushion. Stranger Danger's next assignment is expected to be the Gold Cup on August 31.

The DaCosta/Walker combination enjoyed more success on the day when leading owner Carlton Watson's consistent filly Lady Blue won the 10th, the O & S Tack Room Trophy

Emerald Star's victory in the second event was very deserving for heavily invested owners M&S Syndicate. Trained by Gary Crawford, the Miracle Man-bred filly, racing for only the fifth time since her debut on November 18 last year, gave Robert Halledeen, who secured the plum job for 2019 with the Anthony Nunes camp but now seemingly out of favour, his 25th-winning mount of the season.

Odds-on favourite Uncle Vernon, a gelding who does not possess the ability to match his looks, well ridden by champion Anthony Thomas, won the third after being slowly into stride and gave conditioner Gary Subratie his first of two trips to the winners' enclosure. Thomas also enjoyed a second trip to the winners' enclosure when Jamai Raja ran away with the sixth.

Subratie was able to pose again for photos with Casual Drink, who appreciated the opportunity to be relieved of the exacting demands of pure sprinting. The filly was well handled by leading reinsman Christopher Mamdeen to win the seventh over 1,400 metres.

When the Johnny Wilmot-trained Miss Linda Wray won the fourth it gave apprentice Matthew Bennett his first winner for the year.

Apprentice Shane Richardson also had his first win of the season with the eminently predictable victory of Anthony Nunes' Mamacita in the fifth. An hour later, Kiaman McGregor brought trainer Junior Small's Papa Albert with a well-timed run to score in the seventh.

Then it was Reyan Lewis's turn to continue the trend where apprentices have been winning at least half the races each 2019 race day when Roy Matthews' Flowers Thirty won the ninth. Veteran rider O'Neill Mulling closed the card when Late N Drafty, although hard-ridden all the way, scored comfortably.


The Training Feat Award is presented to Errol Waugh for solving the problems of Jamai Raja enabling the six-year-old gelding to perform with machine-like efficiency. Jamai Raja was always clear and won by a conservative 10 lengths posting a time of 1:38.3 for 1600 metres with the first 1200 completed in 1:10.4. Naturally, the Best Winning Gallop Award also goes to Jamai Raja who is also owned by the trainer. The Jockeyship Award goes to Omar Walker for his handling of Lady Blue with the requisite skill and guile to win a challenging race.

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