Patriarch to return with a bang
PATRIARCH, on the cusp of being named last season's champion two-year-old before his bad knees gave way, going for a fifth straight win in December's Jamaica Two-Year-Old Stakes, makes a much-anticipated return as a three-year-old in tomorrow's overnight allowance Ahwhofah Trophy, facing older horses at six furlongs.
The Casual Trick-Electrifying colt showed graded-stakes potential from his very first race last year September, trotting up by 10 lengths in 58.3 at five furlongs straight before turning back his two-year-old peers in the Cash Pot Trophy, Juvenile Stakes and Pick-3 Super Challenge.
PATRIARCH made the opposition look ordinary, the likes of ANOTHER VIGOROUS and COMMANDER TWO, this year's Guineas winner, who has since passed while on the operating table, were among his victims before unsoundness caught up with him at a mile in the Jamaica Two-Year-old Stakes won by MARQUESAS.
Anthony Nunes has nursed PATRIARCH back from surgery and a near 10-month lay-up, during which he missed the three-year-old classic season from which the likes of MARQUESAS and his own stablemate, FAYROUZ, have emerged as up-and-coming graded stakes candidates - horses with whom he would have toyed with had he remained sound.
There is no question to be asked of his well-being, having busted the clockmen's watches in his last two workouts - 1:05.3 for five and a half furlongs, the last five in 58.3, from a flat gallop coming off the backstretch on Sunday morning.
PATRIARCH breezed five furlongs straight in 58.0 the previous Monday, flashing past the stands in 45.2 for the last half-mile. A voracious galloper, Dick Cardenas' knees will be in PATRIARCH's ears from the word go with the possibility of him lowering his six-furlong time of 1:12.0 as a two-year-old, considering the track has been on the fast side for the last two meets.
The opposition is exactly what it is - a bunch of runners stuck at overnight allowance since last season, unable to yea or nay - because their owners have no interest in parting ways with them in claiming races, amid better horses dropping from open allowance, ensuring they never graduate to that level.