The charge is on
Gary Subratie leads Anthony Nunes by $2,025 in trainers' championshipFriday, August 20, 2021
After the victory by Calculus in the Jamaica Derby on Saturday, August 7, 2021, winning trainer Gary Subratie pushed himself to the top of the trainers' championship. That lead for Subratie after Derby Day was just over $1 million.
Nunes, the leader since the start of the season, responded quickly to the challenge. On the following race day, Monday, August 9, the champion conditioner saddled two winners, Go Deh Girl and Chandra's Law.
In the race won by Go Deh Girl, Nunes had the distinction of saddling the first four horses by the post, with Hoist The Mast (second); Acero (third); and Glock (fourth). Those two wins plus the placings allowed Nunes to regain his lead by $312,825.
The last race day was Saturday, August 14, when both Nunes and Subratie had one winner each, Markofaprince in lower claiming for the former and Sentient for the latter in the richer Overnight Allowance category. That result, in the main, allowed Subratie to retake the lead by the amount of $2,025.
With the Classic races over and done, and with the trainers' championship so close, pundits are already looking inside the barns of the two top trainers to access their strengths going forward.
Nunes' muscle at this time is apparently with his crop of two year olds. It is reported by morning watchers that the Nunes barn is well endowed with juveniles both in quality and quantity.
Subratie, it is reported, cannot match Nunes with his stock of juveniles, thereby on paper giving the champion trainer a decisive edge in this corridor.
On the other hand, Nunes' power in the top classes has been watered down of late with the absence of the top-rated duo of Toona Ciliata and the much improved Oneofakind, leaving the Horse of the Year Nipster, who has not found his best form this season to carry the flag for the champion.
Subratie, on the other hand, is stronger in the top levels with the likes of Crimson, Sentient, and Duke able to earn almost every time they race, plus they race regularly.
Subratie admitted in a recent interview that his weakness is with the two year olds especially the amount he presently has at his stables under his care. In the same interview, the now leading trainer pointed out that based on where he presently stands with preparation, he probably will not be starting any of his young horses until closer to the end of the year.
While the race for championship honours is a straight fight between Nunes and Subratie mention must be made of Jason DaCosta who currently occupies the number three slot over $5 million behind the two leaders.
What is significant about DaCosta is that he started to officially train in late April and already he has scored 35 wins, two less than Nunes and three below Subratie.
Whatever happens in this tight trainers' championship, what is sure is that some interesting days are ahead for race goers to savour.
In another major championship, Anthony Thomas seems a cinch to be the champion jockey for the third time especially with his closest rival and co-champion Dane Nelson expected to fly off to Canada where he will ply his trade until the end of November. Nelson is not listed to ride tomorrow nor on Monday (Aug 23).
At present Thomas (75 wins) leads the jockeys' race by 17 wins over Nelson with 58. Their closest pursuer with 35 wins is Dick Cardenas.