Duke hard to beat in St Catherine Cup
Duke

The three-year-old and upwards Open Allowance call for the St Catherine Cup offers the largest purse on the nine-race card at Caymanas Park tomorrow (Saturday, January 14, 2023).

A small, but talented field of six runners is down to decide the outcome of what seems a mouth-watering six-furlong (1,200m) contest.

Below is the analysis of each runner.

1. MADELYN'S SUNSHINE (USA): (4 dkb/br f by Joe's Son JoeyMadelyn's Finest) – Speedy importee, who hardly placed a hoof wrong last year, winning four of her seven races, complemented by a second- and third-place finish. Her worst finish was on December 10 when she placed seventh behind God of Love and Duke over the same distance. Both are again present here, but Madelyn's Sunshine is freshened and should prove more competitive.

2. DUKE: (7 grh by Casual Trick Lady Macbeth) – Though getting on in age, Duke remains a highly versatile and consistent sort, as he continues to demonstrate grit and class in his performances. If his second-place finish behind She's My Destiny over 5 1/2 furlongs (1,100m), after a slow start on Boxing Day, is anything to go by, then he should be able to brush these aside despite again being asked to foot topweight of 57.0kg (126lb). Steadily prepared for this assignment and is definitely the one to beat.

3. GOD OF LOVE: (7 bg by Adore The Gold Shanda D) – Faded badly into third position in the Boxing Day contest after attempting to match strides with eventual winner She's My Destiny. With Duke finishing ahead of him, God of Love will again play second fiddle to his rival, now going longer. Still, God of Love is as tough as nails and should by no means be written off.

4. CURLIN'S AFFAIR: (5 ch h by Perfect CurlinNuclear Affair) – Produced a late burst to sweep by the fleet-footed pair of Princessshootingstar and Makeup Artist in sloppy conditions over five-furlong straight on January 7, 2023. That was an Overnight Allowance event, and now back up in class against fiercer opposition, Curlin's Affair will be hard-pressed in his bid for a second-consecutive win.

5. I'VE GOT MAGIC (USA): (5 bh by Fast Anna Lil Miss Richie) – Enjoyed fairly good form last year, including a few surprising performances to upstage more fancied rivals. Like Duke, I've Got Magic is a versatile performer and though he would have liked it longer, the journey will by no means be an issue for this importee. Should be bang in contention when this is decided.

6. ALEXA'S DREAM: (5 ch m by Berlino Di Tiger Alexa's Song) – Closed the 2022 season in the ruck at this level, finishing sixth in consecutive races that involved both Duke and God of Love. Should again be left behind the top two.

I've Got Magic
Sherdon Cowan

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