Two-horse race on the cards
Race fans will be in for a real special treat when the Barbados Turf Club’s third and final season begins on November 16. That’s because a two-horse race has materialized for the trainer’s championship between Anderson Ward and challenger Victor Cheeseman.
This battle started at the beginning of the year as Ward who is looking to make it a hat trick of titles took season one honours by a mere $341.00 and one win fewer that Cheeseman. Not allowing Ward to settle, Cheeseman applied serious pressure in the second season that eventually saw him claiming the second season honours.
The champ ended with meet statistics of 14 wins, eight seconds and six thirds from 73 starters which earned him $238 368. Spearheading his 19-win percentage strike rate was jockey Ricky Walcott who was astride for 11 of those trips to the winner’s enclosure.
Cheeseman won three races on the seventh day with Princess Di, Sirius Black and Zaltarr, along with three double strikes on days two, nine and 10. Once he can remain consistent it is almost certain that he will land his first Trainer’s Championship the dream of every trainer.
He presently stands $41 671 ahead of Ward and with only four days making the third season he’s sitting pretty chilly.
Anderson Ward did not cause much of a stir last season but still was good enough to hold down the runner-up spot with returns of seven wins, 12 seconds and 14 thirds all from 85 starts, earnings of $196 697 for a win percentage of eight.
Ward has not hit the feature races as is accustom to in the past. Noticeably his flock should benefit most from the maintenance break where one can expect to see blood in their eyes on the resumption as retaining the championship will be priority number one.
A second and fourth place finish in the Derby (High Tide and Cabin Boy) could have easily been his most gratifying moment although many might say Purr Class’ victory over Shared Adventure might just tip the scale.
Edward Walcott finished third in the season title and holds down the same position. For the season his charges accumulated eight wins, four seconds and six thirds from 55 starts all earning $166,697 securing a win percentage of 15.
His most gratifying moment was landing Springhead Stable first United Insurance Barbados Derby with Knight Rider who was scoring for the second time last season. He also had a double on the 6th day with Snow White and Regal Juan.
Richard Deane rounded out the top four with investments of nine wins, nine seconds and 13 thirds from 144 starters a win percentage of 6 they all earned $133,090.
He had the distinction of seeing his charges scoring a double on days three and four. Divine Destiny won three on the trot before an injury brought her career to an end.
Deane’s highlight would have been seeing his first time imported starters Just A Fashion and Wild Cat Tea finished one-two while his locally bred Stroke of Luck completed the top three past the post.