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BARBADOS - Sandy Lane Gold Cup 2008
IT WAS ALL Pure Temptation at the Garrison Savannah yesterday.
A horse by this name expertly ridden by the day's leading jockey Andy Ward came out on top in a driving three-horse finish to win the 27th running of the Sandy Lane Barbados Gold Cup.
It was probably the closest and best finish in the Gold Cup for years, as Pure Temptation, John Brian (Rickey Walcott), champion creole Apostle (Anderson Trotman), and Duc D Fer (Juan Crawford) thundered down the homestretch. In a driving finish they flashed past the winning post almost together.
The photo-finish camera confirmed the results in that same order, with three necks separating the first four horses.
It was Ward's second Gold Cup win, having won his first on the Attie Joseph 111-owned Peace Envoy in 1999; but it was the first for the owner/trainer combination of Lord Michael Taylor/Clifton Racing and William Clarke.
It is interesting to note that the horses filling the first three positions in yesterday's race were all reserves, and that two of the three favourites - Itzmo, the actual favourite, and Trinidad and Tobago's Storm Street - were pulled up in the 1 800 metres event; Zarad reportedly broke down during the race.
As expected, Apostle went to the front shortly after the gates opened and, along with Who's Wavering, brought the field into the homestretch for the first time. They were followed by Pure Temptation, Zarad, Laurandal and Capsulite.
Apostle and Who's Wavering shared the lead going down the backstretch as Zarad started to fall away approaching the four-furlong marker. Trotman sent Apostle into almost
a two-length lead approaching the three-furlong marker and he was pursued by Pure Temptation, John Brian and Duc D Fer.
On the final turn into the homestretch, Apostle was still in the lead with challengers all around.
However, Ward and Pure Temptation collared Apostle halfway down the homestretch, while John Brian was seen finishing fast on the outside and Duc D fer was also making headway.
Ward was also successful in another of the day's feature races. He booted home the William Clarke-trained Primed 'N' Loaded in The V Sandy Lane Spa Stakes. The Lord Michael Taylor/Clifton
Racing-owned animal was scoring back-to-back wins here as he had won last year's event.
The other featured race, The V1 Tanglewood Stakes & amp; Trophy, went to the Haydn Nicholls-trained Walk On By, well ridden by Rickey Walcott. Trinidad's Godspell finished third while their other entry, Chief Commander, was down the field.
Ward was the day's top jockey with four wins. In addition to his wins on Primed 'N'Loaded and Pure Temptation, he also booted home Arm Candy and Kingdora.
Jono Jones landed two winners in newcomer Major's Dream for trainer Naz Issa and Mystical Music for trainer Edward Walcott Junior.
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