Sunday, December 17, 2017

Easy President’s Cup for ‘Bigman’

BIGMAN in town avenged his third-placed finish to Readbetweendlines and J’Ouvert in the 1,800-metre ARC Cup on June 20, with a comfortable victory in yesterday’s 1,900-metre Hino President’s Cup at Santa Rosa Park.

The Baskaran Bassawh-owned runner trained by Jamaican Gary Subratie and ridden by Nobel Abrego, scored by six lengths from Buffalo Soldier, J’Ouvert and Holy Man in a time of 1:58 in the $150,000 ninth race of ten on the Toyota Trinidad and Tobago Limited sponsored card.

On an afternoon when the sun failed to turn up, creole Bigman In Town, winner of last year’s Trinidad Derby Stakes and runaway winner of the Horse of the Year and  sprint titles, turned the event into a parade passing the 800-metre pole, and placed his challengers in shackles on Emancipation Day.

Sent off as the 3/1 third choice, Bigman In Town was first to show in the Open Grade Two event, with Buffalo Soldier and Holy Man rushing up to take over the running, while first and second favourites J’Ouvert and Readbetweedlines waited at the rear of the eight-horse field.

Turning up the backstretch  Buffalo Soldier and Holy Man continued to spar for the lead,  with Bigman In Town following, and J’Ouvert moving closer to the leaders. But there was still no move from Readbetweendlines, who is usually at the head of affairs.

Nearing the halfway stage, “Bigman” took up the running from Buffalo Soldier and Holy Man, with J’Ouvert closing in on the leaders. At the 800 metre pole, the Bigman went ahead, but held together for the challenge from behind.

Afterwards, Abrego recalled: “I had been working him about a week now, and I knew he would win. At the half-mile (800-metre) I knew I won. He was cruising, and I only moved with him inside the final 400 metres.”

The jockey added: “He is a good horse, and could be among some of the good horses I have ridden.” 

And owner Bassawh reminded patrons when interviewed, “I said he is the best horse in Trinidad and he proved it.”

Readbetweendlines, who finished eighth and last in the event was led back to the unsaddling area by Ricky Jadoo.

Bigman In Town’s next possible assignment according to Bassawh is the 1,800-metre Independence Cup on September 1, but he is against racing him in that event which is scheduled to be run on the turf.

Racing action continues on August 9, with a possible ten-race card, and Triple Crown winner Momentum could be seen out, as he preps ahead of the Trinidad Derby Stakes on September 24.