Winter card needs the sun
PERSISTENT RAIN yesterday, which left the track at the Garrison Savannah under water, has put a cloud over today’s eagerly awaited Barbados Turf Club’s Winter Jockeys’ Challenge Raceday card.
Race fans will be hoping for plenty of sunshine before the scheduled 1 p.m. start and thereafter in order for racing to take place on the second day of the BTC’s third season.
Even though the Sizzle Street Handicap for three-year-old and older horses rated 140-122 is the feature race, the presence of six of Europe’s finest riders – Lanfranco “Frankie” Dettori (captain), Kieren Fallon, Jamie Spencer, Jimmy Fortune, Seb Saunders and Thomas Queally – will upstage everything else.
Those riders will be seeking revenge on the Barbadian contingent who have won all five of the jockey challenges on home soil. Leading the local cast is captain Anderson Trotman and in his corner will be Rickey Walcott, Reshawn Latchman, Antonio Whitehall, Antonio Perch and Affrie Ward.
Just like the big riders, the H&M-owned Shared Adventure, taking the top impost of 130 pounds, will have plenty to prove as he not only seeks revenge on his last conqueror, Wild Cat Tea, but looks to salvage his sagging reputation.
Wild Cat Tea, which is shouldering 116 pounds and is drawn on the outside, has improved immensely with every start and will be hunted on the likely soft track.
The other four runners, including this year’s Sandy Lane Spa Sprint Stakes winner Vitality (122 pounds), are all hopeful of separating Shared Adventure and Wild Cat Tea.
The challenge jockeys will fight for supremacy in Races 3, 4, 6 and 7 but Race 5 – the Bubba’s Sports Bar Handicap for three-year-old and older horses rated 90-72 and open to horses rated 71 (at the time of entry) – looks a riveting spectacle in the making.
Brothers Daniel and Martin Raizman’s Indanger shoulders the top burden of 128 pounds but his form hasn’t been good. Cinnamon Jane, a winner two starts back, is down to take 126 pounds and appears a live contender.
Sarava Point has carried good form all year long and even at the impost of 119 pounds his chances are next to high voltage. Though stepping back up the rating ladder, Reward Me has hardly put a foot wrong and much the same is expected with 114 pounds.
The Price Is Right (116 pounds), is renowned for her sprinting ability and will be an interesting competitor as she attempts the distance of 1 800 metres.
The tone for the card will be set in the Variety Club Barbados Children’s Charity Race for West Indian-bred two-year-old maidens, allotted weights over 1 570 metres.
Kingston Kitty, shouldering 116 pounds, Hercules, Summer Again and Tachyon – all carrying 121 pounds – are coming off commendable debuts.
Hercules was second in his only effort and should be much better for this run. Summer Again’s gradual improvement has been reflected in his three starts, and a win seems inevitable, while Tachyon arrived from behind the clouds in his only appearance for third place.