It’s Superstakes Day again at Caymanas Park and all of 14 hopefuls line up for the Big Race.  But numbers do not a competitive race make and there is a stand-out bet in this year’s renewal.

THE SUPERSTAKES (10f; 11th race; 4:40 p.m.)

The three year olds have not impressed me this year and are all by-passed as not having the class to win this true test against older horses.  The best of them, the filly Saint Cecelia, has a substantial stamina doubt about her and will have to prove she stays in a truly run race as Hombre and It Is I will ensure fast early fractions.  This leaves the finish among the tried and tested trio of Allied Force (best drawn; fit and fresh and will run his heart out but the choice of jockey is not exactly inspiring); Ad Infinitum (peaking at the right time and very hard to beat if it rains but has been handed the car park draw and this will definitely be a big negative on a fast track) and RUM TALK (nap) who is still lightly raced at 5 years old; is fresh and the fittest in the line-up (working brilliantly); will relish the fast early fractions and is by far the best in the field in a truly run race.  With the great Winston Griffiths booked, he looks a cinch.  Only a torrential downpour can defeat him, in which event the winner should be Ad Infinitum.  Allied Force, if judiciously ridden, can fill the exacta slot in either case but, in the more likely event that Trevor Simpson loses his head yet again in a big money two turn race, look to the likes of Saint Cecelia or Regal Selection to fill the exacta spot.


This race has been a farce for many years now with no challenge from anywhere in the Caribbean and is again with the reigning Champion AWHOFAH (BANKER BET) a certainty at the weights.  The Chief is an interesting improver who could possibly create an upset and, in a race with little early pace, Mr. Skill might be able to dominate and shock the crowd.

THE IMPORTED MILE (1m; imported 3yo+; 9th race; 3:35 p.m.)

A competitive renewal.  Honeyofalady will be all the rage at the betting windows but she will be attempting a mile for the very first time and lumping her highest weight allotment to date.  This will be a frenetic early gallop and you can rest assured that her stamina will be sternly tested.  There must be value in opposing her with one proven at the trip who will be coming from off the pace and none fits that bill better than SKITTLE QUEEN, desperately unlucky on Derby Day and running as if something was amiss on next before put on a rest.  Her return race, over a grossly inadequate 5fr trip, was so eye-catching that she must be the bet here with Andrew Ramgeet taking the ride.  She has defeated Working Image, a subsequent Grade 1 winner and would have comfortably beaten Quick and Grey (subsequently ½ length behind Honeyofalady ) but for that incredible mishap on Derby Day and now she sits all of 7.5kg below the favourite in the scales!!

Get in early and often!!

THE JUVENILE SPRINT (6.5f; 3rd race; 12:35 p.m.)

Another false favourite looms here as the Shane Ellis/Percy Hussey combination has had so much success recently with their 2yos that anything they send to post is a sure-fire favourite.  This time it’s the hot-pot Roaming Star, a handsome son of Ghost Ransom who could not have been more impressive in breaking his maiden the second time of asking.  But, let’s not get carried away, it was only a maiden race he won.  The second, Gabiwitzo, has now run second in three maidens and is yet to win a race. And the time (24.0; 47.4; 1:13.1) of 1:20.2 is not saying a lot either.  What can be said for Roaming Star is that he was laying out better and better the more the race went on and is clearly a Derby hopeful but right now, there are more advanced two year olds who will make it very hot for him in this event.

The multiple winners in this race are REGAL SENSATION (3 wins) and Pedro Bluff (2 wins) and I make bold to say that one of them will surely win. The latter was most impressive on debut and improved again on last after two lacklustre starts in between, showing a nice change of pace to stay on and catch the runaway leader after being up with the pace.  He was 1/2l in front of the former in the Grade 3 Cash Pot after leading for most of the way.  This is 100metres longer and REGAL SENSATION was hampered at the start of that race, staying on final furlong from well behind.  He also gets a 2 lbs swing for that run and so must be the selection but just from the improving Pedro Bluff.

Elsewhere on the Superstakes Programme, I like Piccolo (a perfect fit for the former Champion Trevor Simpson) to win the 2nd (4yo nw3; 1500m); Lady Gorakhpur to defeat the ordinary looking Classy Company in the Maiden special weight/optional claiming race for 3yos (1400m; 4th race); Diabolical Kid to show appreciation for the absence of The Cghief and Skittle Queen in the Restricted Stakes (Imp 3yonw3/NB 3yo; 1100m; 5th race); and The Real Stream to finally come good in the nightpan.

Good Luck!


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