Race Day Review – Saturday, January 6 2024
OWNED and trained by Robert French, She’s Fantastic (6-1), ridden by 2019 champion Christopher Mamdeen, led early and had her pursuers in trouble at the end of the first 200 of the 1300 metres of the opening event.
The five-year-old mare never looked likely to be caught at any stage and scored by just over three lengths, with Premier Identity, another 6-1 shot, the best of the others.
In the farcical race two Jason DaCosta declared four of six nominations but then two were withdrawn, eventually leaving She’s My Friend (Jerome Innis) to gallop in front over the 1400 metres and romp it by six and a half lengths.
In race three, Cookie Day N Night (9-5) outstayed even-money favourite Brown Skin Girl by just under four lengths, with 2022 champion Dane Dawkins at the reins for conditioner Gary Subratie.
Race four, restricted to three-year-old maidens, ended in a comfortable success for Allegiance (7-5), schooled by former three-time champion Anthony Nunes. Raddesh Roman kept the colt in front throughout the 1400-metre gallop to claim a three-length margin of victory.
Tevin Foster secured the first of his two winners on the card in race five, with United States importee Chitu Prince (5-2) outsprinting eight rivals by a commanding 10 lengths over the 1000 metres of the straight course. Owner/trainer Andre Adams opened his career account here.
Race six, run at 1400 metres, saw a return to form by erstwhile top-class campaigner Crimson (3-1). Looking especially well in the post parade, the eight-year-old bay gelding’s strong late run, induced by Bebeto Harvey, delivered successfully inside the last 50 metres to disburse the major slice of the spoils to trainer Ricardo Mathie.
To confirm his double success Foster’s return to the winners’ enclosure was not delayed beyond race seven over 1100 metres.
Milos (7-2) got the perfect assistance from the in form reinsman as he displayed the usual patience. Waiting in fourth behind the three battling leaders, Foster, presented with an opening on the far rails in the final part of the turn for home, drove Milos to the front approaching the distance.
Lightly weighted filly Acknowledgeme (5-1) challenged strongly in the closing stages but the skill set of Foster maintained Milos’s lead safely by an eventual shorthead for trainer Greg Fennell’s right to be in the winners’ enclosure.
Sadiki Blake — a rider who had a stint competing in St Kitts and who has far more competence than the paucity of mounts he receives suggests, was aboard 8-5 favourite Wildfire.
Saddled by Anthony Smith for race nine over the straight 1000-metre distance, the filly was always prominent and came home convincingly two lengths ahead of the field to follow up on an eight-length margin of victory in her previous appearance.
The same can almost be said about jockey Oshane Nugent, who was leading claiming jockey in 2020 and 2021 but only managed six winners from 145 mounts last season. Given an opportunity aboard the 9-5 favourite Yellowstone in the featured Security Department Trophy, Nugent kept the Alford Brown-conditioned five-year-old gelding perfectly balanced to score by just shy of three lengths over the 1000-metre straight course.
The Training Feat Award is presented to Alford Brown for posting Yellowstone in immaculate condition after an absence dating back to Independence Day August 1 last year. The Best Winning Gallop, requiring courage and speed, was displayed by Milos whose manner of winning was due in no small measure to the assistance of Tevin Foster who deserves yet another Jockeyship Award.