Proud President gets JRTA vote
PROUD PRESIDENT almost landed the gamble at long odds, 26-1, on Diamond Mile Day, just beaten in a four-way photo finish - separated only by a neck from first-past-the-post OLD BRAETON.
Partnered by three-kilo claiming apprentice Anthony Thomas, PROUD PRESIDENT found himself chasing LIKE A LADY from the gate and into the lane, pressing splits of 24.0, 47.2 and 1:13.1 at 1500 metres.
Asked to find extra a furlong out when dueling WARTIME for the lead, PROUD PRESIDENT was by then winded and one-paced. However, he stayed on willingly to feature in a thrilling finish won by OLD BRAETON storming from off the pace.
Going a furlong-and-a-half shorter in Saturday's 1200-metre Jamaica Racehorse Trainers' Association Trophy feature, the dark bay colt will be far happier in his usual role of run-on sprinter after being asked to chase LIKE A LADY at a longer distance last week.
Title-chasing Bebeto Harvey, starts the day nine winners adrift Omar Walker and is on some useful mounts, including PROUD PRESIDENT, aboard whom he had placed third behind SUPER COP at 1000 metres round on November 16.
LUCKY NINE, who was unlucky enough to be hindered by three horses on Saturday, resulting in a historic triple disqualification, returns with Dane Nelson aboard and breaking from post-position 15.
Nelson's mount will start favourite because his section of Saturday's race was run in 1:32.3, compared to OLD BRAETON's winning time of 1:34.0.
LUCKY NINE had shot to the lead at the half mile, going past STRAIGHTFROMUHEART on Saturday.
However, the reduction in journey and speedier horses such as MISS MYRTLE, SWEET DESTINY and UNION FOUR will make things testy on the lead for a long way, which could see LUCKY NINE being used up coming from his outside draw.
PROUD PRESIDENT is not badly drawn at post-position 11. He is accustomed to stalking sprinters, having placed third behind horses such as PURE AMAZEMENT and KING D, 1000 metres straight and 1100 metres, respectively.
Harvey is a good judge of pace and has the ability to time PROUD PRESIDENT's stretch run to overhaul the leaders at 1200 metres.