|Race Day Review Day 17 Monday 21st May 2011|
'Bruce' dashes loose and shatters record
BRUCEONTHELOOSE put two extremely talented youngsters in their place and shattered a track record in the process when horse racing resumed with the 17th round of the Arima Race Club's (ARC) 2011 Season after a one-week break at Santa Rosa Park, Arima. Despite his awesome record in Trinidad, the two-time defending Horse of the Year was not given much of a chance by the experts in the Santa Rosa Dash. Signal Alert and Readbetweendlines had slaughtered their opponents in lightning-fast times this season and it seemed an impossible task for Bruceontheloose to give them over nine kilos and retain his title in the Grade II contest. Also working against the top-rated horse in training is the fact that he recently lost an eye and there were questions as to whether he would ever return to his best again.
The answer was emphatic as Bruceontheloose produced arguably his best performance since coming across from his native Jamaica in the middle of 2009 as the young pretenders to his throne were forced
Readbeetweendlines, who had tied Signal Alert's track record (1:10) with a nine-length victory last time out, was going for his fourth triumph from five career starts, but was passed in mid-stretch by 'Bruce' and forced to settle for the runner-up berth. Signal Alert ended up 3 ½ lengths adrift as he tasted defeat for the first time in five career outings. The Errol Stables-owned son of Omega Code had started the season in February by shattering Sugar Mike's 1,300-metre track record and then lowered Bruceontheloose's 1,200-metre mark in his other start the following month. 'Bruce', who gave Readbetweendlines 9.5 kilos and the third-placed Signal Alert 11.5, had first broken the record in this very race last year and the record for the distance has now fallen in the 'Dash' on four occasions. Asmira did the trick in the 2001 edition and after Sugar Mike also ran 1:10 2/5 seconds two years later, they held on to the record for seven years before Bruceontheloose shaved 1/5th of a second of it last year during the 14th running.
The champion trainer is tied at the top with the now-retired Grant Lourenco, who was successful with Criollo ('99), Sugar Mike ('03) and Invincibility ('04). Abrego, who piloted Sugar Mike, tied Rajpaul Rajkumar with two victories in the saddle, but another veteran, Ricky Jadoo is the leader with three -Kabila ('98), Invincibility, and Film Director ('07). The Dachin Racing Stabes is the leading owner as former ARC president Derek Chin has led Still Alert (2000), Film Director and Storm Street ('09) into the winner's enclosure. Bruceontheloose's win was worth $90,000 and the Tres Amigos-owned five-year-old in now less than $3,000 away from becoming the first horse in history of local racing to cross $2 million in career earnings. It was his 14th triumph, but the very first time in 18 outings in Trinidad that he had not started the favourite. The grey son of Wheelaway was sent off at odds of 8/5, while both Signal Alert and Readbetweendlines were 6/5 in the betting.
Blackstone Street, who has struggled since winning the Stewards Cup in November '09, finished more than six lengths adrift of Signal Alert to trail the small field in the Grade II contest. For the first time in a very long time, Maniram Maharaj was the leading owner and trainer for a day. First To Fly had the veteran celebrating in the second race when he whipped a bunch of 85-65 rated three-year-old and over horses by over three lengths over 1,100 metres on the turf in a very good time of 1:03.28 seconds.The American-bred three-year-old was sent off at odds of 3/1, but Maharaj's other winner Agra was a rank outsider in the curtain event. The American-bred five-year-old, who had failed to find winners' enclosure in 17 previous starts in Trinidad, finally did so by half-length and at odds of 20/1 in the 1,750-metre contest for three-year-old and over horses rated 70-50.
Two races earlier Carnival King had also stunned punters when the 15/1 shot won the 1,200-metre contest for three-year-old and over 70-50 rated horses by a length from a fast-finishing Check In The Mail and fellow 30/1 shot Razmin. Yoan Cristalino, who had ridden in just four races for the season before the start, had four mounts and the Venezuelan piloted both long shots to victory. Racing continues on May 30 and the feature attraction of the Indian Arrival Day Holiday card will be Carib Midsummer Classic for West Indian-bred three-year-old. This 1,900-metre contest is the second leg of the local Triple Crown,which will conclude on August 1 (Emancipation Day) with the Trinidad Derby Stakes. Touch D Road won the opening leg (Easter Guineas) on Easter Monday (April 25).
|Last Updated ( Monday, 23 May 2011 19:00 )|