‘Perfect’ for Independence Day
INDEPENDENCE means a lot for any country and with Trinidad and Tobago celebrating its 51st anniversary today, one of the main forms of entertainment, horse racing, will take centre stage at Santa Rosa Park, Arima.
And it could be a “Perfect Day” of celebration for Jamaican trainer Gary Subratie and owner Baskaran Bassawh with their 1,800-metre Neal & Massy Oaks entry. All those who have concerns about her stamina should journey to Santa Rosa to witness a stroll in the Park.
On her local debut, Perfect Day trotted up, beating champion trainer John O’Brien’s highly regarded colt, Headline News, cantering him over 1,200 metres.
Yesterday, the Express spoke to her trainer Subratie, who flew in from his homeland to witness the filly take part in the Oaks.
“I am not worried about the trip” Subratie said. “She is going to run a big race. She is a fighter, and a tough little horse, and she will get it done.”
Questions have been posed about whether Perfect Day has too much speed, Subratie does not think so.
“She has speed, not blazing speed, but she can be there early, if you want her,” he said. “She runs better off the pace, and up the back stretch where you will want to get her engaged, she will be there.
“She seems to be enjoying this track from what I have been told,” he added. “She seems to love the slop, as you call it. The ground will not be a bother too much. She will prefer the firmer and faster track, as our track is deeper.”
Asked about his Trinidad Derby entry, Bigman In Town, who is expected to be sent off as the favourite, Subratie said: “You will see real big things. He is happy and enjoying the Trinidad weather, and enjoying the speed track. We had some issues in the Governor General Cup, and the (Trinidad) Derby, but he is going to run a big (one).”
Further pressed to find out who will be riding Bigman In Town in the Derby, he said, “we still discussing it. We have not made a decision as yet. In a couple of days you will know. I will not be staying in Trinidad. I will return home, and come back ten days before the Derby.”
Perfect Day will turn the Oaks into a procession, and the bigger problem could be the runner-up slot. However, it should come from between trainer Derick Mosca’s Sweet Genius or Doctor Of Merit.
In the 1,800-metre Bernard Dulal-Whiteway Independence Cup on the turf, the weather will play a major role in the outcome, as any rain will certainly see the race moved to the main track.
At the time of writing, the turf track was waterlogged in some places, and the Express was informed any more rain will prompt the promoters, the Arima Race Club (ARC) to have the race moved off the turf. With that in mind Golden Dixieland, Galveston, Free Passage and Buffalo Soldier will be the horses to follow on the main track. However, if the race remains on the turf, Sacred Trust, Nominee, Just Call Me Roger and Bajan entry Modimo will come into their own. And Nominee could get the vote ahead of Sacred Trust and Just Call Me Roger.
Post time for the day’s opener is 11.30 a.m.