India Weekend Race Review – 22 September, 2019

By Dhanu Delphi on September 25, 2019

The 2019 edition of the St. Leger lived up to its hype with a strong contest between the top two horses involved in the race – Roberta and Adjudicate. With the latter prevailing in the end, we have now completed the five Indian classics of 2019. Our horse racing preview last week had focused on the St. Leger and one other maiden race from Pune. Here is how the three horses we picked fared in each of those races:

The Nana Raghunath Trophy

Out of the seven horses which had signed up for this maiden race for three-year-olds, Righteous was forced to withdraw. That left us with half a dozen young colts and fillies competing across a distance of 1400m. Our top picks for this race were Rainbow Trout and Tasman, with Akina Speed Star as a long shot.

Of the trio, Tasman and Akina Speed Star finished fourth and fifth respectively. That leaves us with Rainbow Trout as our sole choice in the top three, and here is how she fared in this race:

  1. Rainbow Trout – The tote favorite did not disappoint in this race, winning comfortably by a margin of two and three-quarter lengths. Trained by Dallas Todywalla, Rainbow Trout comes from the bloodline of Leitir Mor (IRE) and Rainbow Queen (GB). Her jockey for this winning run was A Sandesh.
  2. Tristar – She is a dark brown filly from the yards of trainer Nosher Cama. Sired by Surfrider (IRE), this filly has run 4 races so far. This is her first-ever finish in the top four. CS Jodha was her jockey for this event.
  3. Walk The Talk – The son of Speaking of Which (IRE), this bay gelding managed to finish a distant third (margin of six lengths behind Tristar). His trainer is Imtiaz Sait and he had S Zervan as the jockey for Sunday. Walk The Talk now has two finishes in the top four (3 and 4) after three races.

The Indian St. Leger

Yet another prestigious long-distance race with few takers, the 2019 edition of the St. Leger was thankfully not short on excitement. All four horses on the race card managed to start, with the well-rested Roberta jumping ahead early on. But the tote favourite Adjudicate had other ideas, as we will shortly see in our match recap.

In our preview, we picked Roberta for the win, with Bushtops getting the second vote. Adjudicate was our long shot, given her poor performances against Roberta in the past. Bushtops ended the race last, leaving us with these two. Here is how they finished the race:

  1. Adjudicate – This was the first Indian Classic success for trainer James McKeown. His ward Adjudicate ran a flawless race, tailing Roberta for much of the race before surging ahead near the final turn. She finished the race with ease, ahead by a comfortable margin of two lengths. Jockey A Sandesh had an excellent race here.
  2. Roberta – Despite a strong start, the P Shroff trained filly flagged badly towards the end, falling behind to that late charge by Adjudicate. Still, the distance between Roberta and the third-placed horse was over seven lengths, which clearly shows the gulf in class in the field. S Zervan was her jockey for this race.
  3. Golden Tops – The only colt in this classic is a son of Sedgefield (USA). Trained by LVR Deshmukh, he has competed in 12 races so far, with 4 wins. This was his sixth race ending in the third position. With jockey Imran Khan in the saddle, Golden Tops emerged as the best of the bottom two in this race by a margin of three and a half lengths.

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