Race Day Review – Saturday, January 20, 2024
IN the opening event of nine, the form players were spared a disastrous start with the finishing speed of favourite
(9-5) besting 26-1 and 22-1 outsiders
into second and third, respectively, over the five and a half furlongs.
Ridden by three-kilogramme claimer Romario Spencer for trainer Leroy Tomlinson
Mule Train’s late rush ended almost two lengths clear of the nearest rival at the finish.
Dane Dawkins, the 2022 champion reinsman, held up
Rhosa The Warrior (8-5) along the inner and then the far rails in the homestretch. The mare responded decisively to overtake front-running
Sugar Daddy (3-5) midway the final 200m of the 1,100 metres, pleasing owner-trainer Anthony Smith as he must have enjoyed the three-and-half-length winning advantage.
As usual, the claiming and condition system featuring the non-classification of the horse population makes a mockery of handicapping, leading to a huge number of odds-on favourites and freakishly wide margins of victory militating against the development of the economic viability of the promoting company.
Of superior form and ability,
Regnant (1-2), trained by Henry Harrison Jr, ridden by Omar Walker, and bred by veterinarian Dr Aston Marsh, in winning the 1100-metre third event by seven lengths is a prime example of the above.
Bred in North America and schooled by champion Jason DaCosta, debutant
Funcaandun (USA) impressed with a canter over 1200 metres of race four, the featured Rimsky Trophy, clocking a time of 1:12.2. Partnered by Shamaree Muir, the impressively conformed three-year-old colt has tremendous scope for improvement and will be a welcomed boost to the anaemic talent available at the highest level.
Appropriately named and trained by Captain Marlon Brown with Matthew Bennett holding the reins,
Military Grade (4-5) outpaced eight rivals, convincingly scoring by over four lengths in race five contested by a field of nine over 1000 metres straight.
In race six, first past the post as the 1-2 favourite,
My Smokey Jordan Barrett) had a reversal of placings with runner-up
JamalJames, (7/1) trained by Michael Spencer and ridden by Phillip Parchment, for interference to this rival. The race was contested over 1200 metres by a field of 10.
In race seven, a maiden special weight for three-year-old fillies and run at 1200 metres, Steven Todd saddled
Lady Lauren (5-2) for a near seven-length margin of victory, with Tevin Foster keeping her on the bridle for a long time.
Race eight, run over 1000 metres at the minimum trip on the round course, saw
Manaco (Javaniel Patterson) outsprinting 1-2 favourite
Badgyalriri (Tevin Foster) by almost two lengths for owner-trainer Gregg Fennell.
The 1100-metre closing event was dominated by US-bred
Flybluejet (6-5), conditioned by former 14-time champion Philip Feanny, with Oniel Mullings given the opportunity to execute the riding exhibition in the absence of 2023 champion jockey Reyan Lewis — the declared rider at scratch time.
The imported dark brown filly had her eight rivals in trouble inside the first 200 metres and was always clear to score by five and a half lengths.
The Training Feat Award is presented to Jason DaCosta for the forward condition of
Funcaandun (USA), with the debutant getting the basics perfectly to deliver the Best Winning Gallop. Three-kilo claimer Romario Spencer gets his first Jockeyship Award for his performance aboard
Mule Train in the opening event.