Momentum lands Triple Crown
PORT OF SPAIN – Patrick Husbands’ loss is Brian Boodramsingh’s gain.
Trinidadian jockey Boodramsingh wrote his name into the history books in the Trinidad and Tobago capital Wednesday when he guided Momentum to victory in the TT$500 000 (US$79 000) Trinidad Derby on the Republic Day card, and to the capture of the first Triple Crown in 11 years.
Trinidad-based Boodramsingh stalked with the three-year-old bay colt throughout the 2 000-metre trip before making his move at the top of the stretch and running way to reach the wire four lengths clear in a time of two minutes, 7.30 seconds.
In a lucky twist of fate, Boodramsingh only got the ride after top-rated Barbadian reinsman Patrick Husbands, who was originally slated to ride Momentum, pulled out of the opportunity.
Princess Popstar, the 3-5 favourite with Wilmer Galviz aboard, finished second, while Glorious Country was third.
Barbados Derby winner Voldemort, with Canada-based Barbadian jockey Rico Walcott in the saddle, was a disappointing fifth.
Momentum, trained by the outstanding John O’Brien, joined Carnival Messiah and Top Of The Class as the only Triple Crown winners since the sport was moved to Santa Rosa Park 20 years ago.
Carnival Messiah accomplished the feat in 2001 while Top of the Class tasted similar success in 2003. Both were trained by Glenn Mendez.
The Triple Crown comprises the Easter Guineas, the Midsummer Classic and the Trinidad Derby.
Going off at odds of 8-5, Boodramsingh broke Momentum well and positioned her four-wide and out of traffic, as Bigman Bas posted sluggish fractions of 24.1 seconds for the quarter-mile and 51.1 for the half-mile.
Voldemort pressed the pace while Glorious Country also stalked from third with Momentum on her flank.
As the race entered the far turn, Boodramsingh brought Momentum to challenge Bigman Bas and Voldemort, and the pair grabbed the lead as the race turned for home.
Momentum then sprinted two-lengths clear under a steady right handed whip and with a furlong to run there were no serious challengers, as Boodramsingh took the colt to the wire under a strong drive.
Jalon Samuel, the other Barbadian jockey in the race for West Indian-bred three-year-olds over 2 000 metres, finished at the back of the 11-man field on long shot Freedom Fighter.
Meanwhile, Walcott, a three-time defending champion at Northlands Park in Edmonton, got himself into the winners’ enclosure in race six when he won with 18-1 outsider Wild Shuffle over 1 450 metres. (CMC)