Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 1st 2017 Contents A32 sports
guardian.co.tt Sunday, January 1, 2017
Cooper facing checks after fall
Bryan Cooper was taken to hospital for a pre-
cautionary X-ray following a spill in the first race
at Punchestown, yesterday.
The rider, who enjoyed Grade One success in his
role as number one rider for Gigginstown House
Stud with Petit Mouchoir at Leopardstown on
Thursday, was unseated after Arkwrisht made a
bad mistake five out in a begginers’ chase.
Turf Club chief medical officer Dr Adrian Mc-
Goldrick said: “He’s gone to hospital for a pre-
“He got a kick at the top of his groin. I’ve spoken
to him a couple of times and he says he feels fine,
but the doctor on course wanted him to go and get
an X-ray, more as a precaution than anything else.
“I haven’t had the X-ray report yet, but I’m not
expecting to hear any bad news.”
Sheehan suffers wrist injury
Gavin Sheehan was taken to hospital for X-rays
on a suspected broken wrist following a fall at New-
Sheehan was riding Rock Of Leon in the second
race on the card, the limited handicap chase, when
his mount jinked left and unseated his partner soon
after the first fence.
Sheehan rode in the following contest, finish-
ing fourth on Yanmare in the Mandarin Handicap
Chase, but stood himself down soon afterwards.
His boss Warren Greatrex said: “He’s gone to hos-
pital for X-rays on a suspected broken right wrist.
“Richard Johnson is on standby for Cole Harden
in the Relkeel at Cheltenham tomorrow.”
Sheehan had earlier enjoyed a winner when the
Greatrex-trained Final Choice emerged as an out-
sider for Triumph Hurdle honours in winning the
Betfred-sponsored juvenile hurdle.
Cross Proves King Of Newbury
Amateur jockey James King claimed the biggest
win of his career when steering Potters Cross to
victory in the Betfred Mandarin Chase at Newbury,
Always towards the fore under King, the well-
backed 11/2 winner travelled strongly and jumped
to the front past Financial Climate down the back
straight, before being reined back in to allow the
leader to go on again.
With the field going a serious gallop, the runners
started to get spread out along the track in behind,
and four our King allowed Potters Cross to stride
into a clear advantage.
The diminutive Treaty Girl arrived to throw
down her challenge at the next fence, along with
the patiently-ridden Conas Taoi, but Potters Cross
kept on strongly and, meeting the final fence on
a great stride, stayed on up the run-in to score by
The Mandarin may not be the same race as it
was in days gone by, when the likes of Mill House
and Night Nurse took it in the 1960s and 1970s,
but in more recent years it has proved a potential
stepping stone towards the Grand National with
Maori Venture and Party Politics both also appear-
ing on the roll of honour.
The enormous Potters Cross, who clearly stays
and jumps effortlessly, must be considered a po-
tential Aintree candidate next season, if not this.
Winning trainer Rebecca Curtis was in agree-
ment. “I’d love to have a go at the National with
him, as I think he is tailormade for it,” she said.
“He would need to go up the weights, but we don’t
want him to go up to much.”
Curtis said she would consider the Cheltenham
Festival for the winner, but, as she alluded to, con-
nections might need just a few more pounds on his
back if he is to get into the National field this year,
which would require him running again before the
weights are published in February. Were that the
case, Curtis said “you could forget Cheltenham”.
Bookmakers Sky Bet installed the winner at 40/1
in their market for next year’s National.
Thisonesforron is a
stand out champion
Champion Turf Performer
and the Champion Import-
ed Stayer of 2015, moved
a step closer to becoming
the Horse Of The Year for
2016 after he won the 2016
Gold Cup in style from wor-
thy competitors, Conquest
Bespoke and Teniente Coro-
nel, in impressive fashion in
front of a very large holiday
Just as many of the pessimist
were saying that racing was
dead, Santa Rosa Park came
alive with a fantastic turnout
at the centralized facility.
What was vitally important
was the fact that history was
made by trainer John Leotaud
who saddled all three Graded
race winners on Boxing Day,
making it the biggest day in
his racing career.
He followed in the footsteps
of champion trainer John
O’Brien in 2014 when he sad-
dled his first ‘Triple Crown’
winner, with the then three-
year-old champion Momen-
tum, which wrote his name
into racing history when run-
ning away with the NGC Derby
in fine style at Santa Rosa Park,
Arima. Brian Boodramsing also
wrote his name into the annal of
racing history by riding his first
Triple Crown winner in 2014.
Leotaud made history with
Leading Lady to win the St
Ann’s Stakes over 1,350 metres
before the aptly named Battle
Cry impressed in the St James
Stakes over the same distance.
Leotaud saved the best for last,
as he brought Thisonesforron
at concert pitch to take ‘Gold’
in the feature.
The Great Friend owned five-
year-old brown horses was sent
off as the 2-1 second favourite
behind the Shivam Maharaj
owned five-year-old gelding
Teniente Coronel, which was
racing at the centralised venue
for the first time.
However, on a day when the
action was fast and furious,
racing showed that it had many
ways of bouncing back in des-
In the opening event on the
Boxing Day programme, own-
er Dhanpaul Sookoo was the
first to celebrate as the Glenn
Mendez trained Dark Treasure
proved too strong for favorite
Desert Dancer in the opener.
In the second Lady Messiah
had the best defense and duly
won for owner Eminem Sta-
bles to celebrate with trainer
Lester Alexis. Former cham-
pion jockey Prayven Badrie
landed a touch in the third
when Maniram Maharaj bred
PopRock Star finished with a
flourish to win at 4/1 for owner
Richi Maharaj before Sorayah
landed a touch for Rhanie and
Glen Mohammed in the next.
Mendez was again on the
scoresheet in the fifth when
champion Ronald Ali guided
Saint Honey home in the fifth.
Haniff Emamalie then turned
back the clock aboard Trovatore
for trainer Jose William Sama-
roo in the sixth.
Then it was all up to Leotaud
to ‘trick’ them as Leading Lady
surprise her field to win the
seventh event by two lengths
at 39/1 for owner Deo Maharaj.
It was then the turn of Captain
Anthony Wight’s Battle cry to
storm in the next under Bri-
an Boodramsing to take the St
James in taking fashion.
Thisonesforron then capped
off a great day for Leotaud by
winning the Gold Cup in style.
Derick Mosca had the last
laugh on the final day of rac-
ing for the 2016 season, when
War Brigade stayed on best to
deny trainer Bobby Persad his
Everyone was happy with the
ARC and the Boxing Day races
card and are eagerly looking
forward to New Year’s Day
when the 2017 season will open
at Santa Rosa Park.
Thisonesforron with jockey Kerron Khelawan on saddle wins by several lengths in Race 7 which was in
Honour of George Bovell 1, the President’s Cup (GR.11) 3 Y.O. & Over on Day 26 at ARC programme
out at Santa Rosa Park, Arima on August 1. PHOTOS: RALPH BANWARIE
No challenge for Battle Cry as jockey Brian Boodramsingh pushes
his charge to win Race 6, the W.I. Bred 2 Y.O. Maidens Handicap
Race, going 1,200 metres at Santa Rosa Park Arima on December
10, (Day 42).
CLEAR WINNER: Leading Lady with jockey Dillion Khelawan in
saddle runs away from Rocket Wheels ridden by his brother jerron
Khelawan to win Race 7, the St Ann’s Stakes (GR. 111) for W.I. Bred
2 Y. O. Fillies over 1,350 metres at Santa Rosa Park, Arima on
Boxing Day (Day 44) of the 2016 season.
BOXING DAY RACING SPECIAL
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