Race Day Review - Saturday, March 18, 2023
Trainer Patrick Lynch (left) and champion jockey Dane Dawkins after the win by Atlantic Convoy. Lynch closed a triple and Dawkins a double with that victory.

Even-money favourite Kissmet did not have the best of starts but coupled up sharply to dispute the early lead.

She ran gamely in the event restricted to three-year-olds over the divided 800-metre straight dash to beat chief rival Cosmic Force (2-1) by half a length. Saddled by second-generation horseman Steven Todd, the filly's victory was the first of two winning mounts for leading reinsman Tevin Foster. This win by Kissmet erased memories of her being disqualified from first place two races prior.

Underutilised Javaniel Patterson was on his 37th mount of the season and improved his winning tally to four with a seven-length-and-quarter runaway aboard Freedom Street(6-5) over the 1100 metres of the day's second, with more riding success pending. Perennial top ten conditioner Patrick Lynch was on the way to having the best day, year to date, for his barn with this win being the first of three successes on the card.

Lynch's second was only half-hour away as five-year-old mare Sure Curlin (2-1) led under the guidance of three-kilogramme claiming jockey Ramon Nepare and was two lengths clear when the winning post brought the 1300-metre gallop of race three to an end.

Trainer Gresford Smith (left) and leading rider Tevin Foster discuss their victory with first- time starter Takes Two To Tango. (Photos: Joseph Wellington)

Speaking of best day of the season to date, Gresford Smith, another second-generation conditioner, saddled his first of two on the day with 1-2 favourite Nomoredeals' convincing winning run over the 1100 metres of the day's fourth. Champion jockey Dane Dawkins did the honours for the first of a double of his own.

Race five, restricted to thee-year-old maidens over the 800-metre straight course, was won by 7-2 wagered De Lye La who outsprinted her rivals, including Mr Fete the 2-5 favourite, by over five lengths. Reyan Lewis piloted the winner for trainer Ian Parsard who also bred the speedy little filly whose odds in three previous starts were 2-5, 2-1 and 2-1; but she disappeared from the early headlines to finish well-beaten on each occasion.

Making a protracted, belated first appearance was five-year-old bay horse Kwaku who was bred at Orange Valley and is owned by Solomon Sharpe, executive chairman of SVREL, in partnership with his dad Owen, a former commercial airline pilot and who conditioned the horse. Jerome Innis was always confident he was mounted on the best of the field. Although slow to respond to the opening of the starting gate Kwaku, the 2-5 favourite, romped to a winning advantage of eight lengths.

Chairman Sharpe's colours were back in the winners' enclosure following the running of eighth and penultimate event, with his Canadian-bred three-year-old Atlantic Convoy (8-5) impressing in the featured Milligram Trophy run at 1500 metres in memory of the 1992 Derby winner. Always galloping strongly on the bridle, Atlantic Convoy (Can) was better than four lengths ahead of 2023 Classic aspirant Anonymous, allowing Dawkins to secure his double and making the Lynch stable good for three on the day.

Consistent nine-year-old gelding Loose Cannon duly landed the odds in the closing event. In seven seasons Loose Cannon (6-5) had only made 24 prior appearances but with today's win, despite his unreliable forelegs, he has nine wins, six second- and six third-place finishes – which is a measure of his courage and ability. Javaniel Patterson, in riding a second winner on the card, had his most productive day in recent times, with trainer Andrew McDonald opening his seasonal account with only his second start.

The Training Feat Award is presented jointly to Owen Sharpe and Gresford Smith for the performances of Takes Two To Tango and Kwaku, respectively. The expenditure and the patience of these conditioners to make this feat possible is exemplary. The Best Winning Gallop was that of Atlantic Convoy (Can) whilst the Jockeyship Award goes to Ramon Nepare for his handling of Sure Curlin.


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