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Light Brigade Ready To Charge
Orville Clarke, Gleaner Writer
The Pick-9 again proved elusive at Caymanas Park on Wednesday, resulting in a carryover of $3.3 million.
On tomorrow's Gold Cup Day 10-race programme, the Pick-9 will embrace races two to 10, the first Super-6 from race one to six, the second Super-6 from race five to 10.
The card will be highlighted by the 41st running of the popular Gold Cup race (grade one) over 1400 metres to be contested by 10 starters. The field includes the three big guns of local racing - SAINT CECELIA (Shane Ellis up) who won the race last year, Superstakes winner MARK MY WORD (Winston Griffiths) and the top imported horse MISMYRTLEBOYRICHIE with smart 3.0kg claiming apprentice Shamaree Muir aboard.
Also present is COMMANDING CHIEF, who failed by a short head to catch SAINT CECELIA last year. It will come down to the abovementioned quartet.
We look at the second Super-6 which gets under way with a $350,000-$300,000 claiming race over 1100 metres in which eight starters have been declared. Horses such as the speedy LOVETTA JONES and NOTUS, along with MAYBE I SAY SO, SOCA PARTY and recent winner ONLY BEGOTTEN SUN are all capable of winning, none more so than MAYBE I SAY SO to be ridden by outgoing champion Dick Cardenas for trainer Anthony Nunes.
The 4-y-o chestnut filly won easily over this trip on October 6, and now dropped in class, having run on a $500,000 claiming tag when beaten by ROLEX two months ago, should take the honours with only 51.0kg.
Going for top apprentice
SERIOUS BUSINESS, who went down fighting against WAR HERO recently, gets the nod over lightly raced GALACTUS and TERRA MARIQUE (regaining form) in the sixth race again over 1100 metres. SERIOUS BUSINESS (53.0kg) looks nicely off at the weights with trainer Michael Beecham going for top apprentice Renardo McNaughton, who claims 3.0kg.
Race number seven for the Titania Trophy over 1100 metres looks tailored for AWESOME SENSATION, who just failed to catch stable-companion ROCKETEER over 1400 metres on November 28, a race in which she had the poorly ridden MEROVINGIAN QUEEN behind in third. Both should have the finish to themselves in a field of 12 fillies and mares.
TOMMY FIDDLE, who is knocking loudly at the door, gets the nod over the lightly raced BLACK ROCKET and JJ'S GIRL in the eighth race over the straight (non-winners of two) for four-year-olds and up. This has attracted a maximum field of 16.
It should be fireworks among the top contenders - SAINT CECELIA, MARK MY WORD, MISMYRTLEBOYRICHIE and COMMANDING CHIEF in the CTL Gold Cup, which has attracted the most star-studded field assembled for a major race in years.
Although best going two turns, MARK MY WORD will not find this trip too short and, with a strong pace expected, could get there in time.
The Lorne Kirlew-trained MISMYRTLEBOYRICHIE was beaten into second place by SAINT CECELIA when they last met in the None Such Sprint over 1200 metres on October 13, but will truly welcome the additional furlong and swing in the weights.
Despite all that, preference is for 'Horse of the Year' and champion sprinter SAINT CECELIA, who is unbeaten in her last 10 races, and even at age six has never been better. She will take some catching, but MISMYRTLEBOYRICHIE, who carries a mere 51.0kg, and is the last horse to have beaten her in June of last year, looks the principal danger. Then, close the programme with the well-forward debutant LIGHT BRIGADE, a 3-y-o bay colt by Traditional out of Ocean Liner from the Noel Ennevor stables. He has trained well and should win from ALLADEN'S GOLD and ARMY OFFICER in a field of 16 maiden three-year-olds.
SECOND SUPER-6 FANCIES
(5) MAYBE I SAY SO/LOVETTA
(6) SERIOUS BUSINESS/GALACTUS
(7) AWESOME SENSATION
(8) TOMMY FIDDLE/BLACK ROCKET
(9) SAINT CECELIA/MISMYRTLE BOYRICHIE
(10) LIGHT BRIGADE/ALLADEN'S