Horse Racing

WILL large and totally in charge

Observer staff reporter

Sunday, October 14, 2018

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Readers of last Friday's (October 12, 2018) Supreme Racing Guide would have noticed that only one photograph was used on the front page of the publication. That photo was of Will In Charge with jockey Robert Halledeen.

Racing Guide analysts were convinced that based on two telling factors — the handicaps and the undeniable progress made by Will In Charge over the last six months via the conditioning prowess of trainer Robert Pearson — that Will In Charge, sent off at odds of 2-1, would win the Cal's Tomato Ketchup Gold Cup run over seven furlongs yesterday at Caymanas Park.

In doing so, Will In Charge maintained his undisputed dominance over She's A Maneater. The two top horses in training have now met three times this year and on all three occasions, Will In Charge, a five-year-old chestnut horse, has beaten the four-year-old filly.

The Gold Cup victory is by far the best ever by Will In Charge. It was a victory which, without doubt, places the Adore The Gold Gem Lea offspring on top of all thoroughbreds in Jamaica as the win was littered with supreme class.

Further confirmation came with the final time, a blistering 1:23.1, which is just two-fifths of a second off the 1994 track record set by the mighty Eros. The recorded splits were 23.0 x 45.1 x 1:09.0. Second was Another Bullet (36-1), four lengths behind the winner and third She's A Maneater, the 1-5 on favourite.

When the starter sent them off, Siempre Bueno shot to the lead but as soon as the horses approached the six-furlong (1,200m) point, Houdini's Magic (Wesley Henry) went in front of Siempre Bueno with Will In Charge settled nicely in third spot under a snug wrap.

Will In Charge, under skilful guidance from Halledeen, then surrounded the leaders running the half-mile (800m) and began to draw away coming into the lane and from then on victory was never in doubt.

For Pearson it was an expected win.

“It was an excellent performance but an expected one as well. I stepped him ( Will In Charge) up in exercise and he responded well. I am very happy with his effort. He is a very nice horse,” the trainer said.

Halledeen in his victory response said: “It was an excellent performance by Will In Charge. When I asked him to go from the half-mile, he responded and even in the lane he just kept on going and going.”

Meanwhile, it was a feast on the Gold Cup race day for the newlygraduated apprentices as six of the 10 races were taken by them.

Tevin Foster led the way with a three-timer, the first by the new riders. He won on Blue Moon, Concur and My Mom Juss. Reyan Lewis got off the mark with a double, bringing home Deal Marker and Francia's Pride, while Daniel Satchell earned his first win on Brave Prospect.

Racing continues tomorrow (Heroes Day) with 11 races.

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