Puddy Pooh by a neck
Orville Clarke, Sunday Gleaner Writer
The 2-5 favourite PUDDY POOH made a winning debut at Caymanas Park yesterday, but jockey Omar Walker had to work overtime in order to win division one of the Sunnyside Stakes for native bred two-year-old fillies by a neck.
Ten contested the 1,100-metre race with the public going head over heels for PUDDY POOH, a lovely looking bay filly by Adore The Gold out of Shahar, owned and trained by Richard Azan.
Although slowly into stride and running a bit green when challenging long-time leader MOM'S STUDENT (5-2) after coming three-wide into the straight, she had to be hard driven in a neck-and-neck duel with MOM'S STUDENT (Richard Mairs up) before gaining the ascendancy within shades of the wire.
Division two of the Sunnyside Stakes provided an impressive victory for another highly fancied debutante, FEARLESS FURY, who made virtually all as the 4-5 favourite.
Owned and trained by Fitzroy Glispie, the chestnut filly, by Fearless Vision out of Raging Fury, powered home by the resounding margin of 141⁄2 lengths in the smart time of 1:06.3 with Jevanne Erwin aboard.
MONALISASMILE (6-1) was second of the 11 starters.
Meanwhile, MERU, running at odds of 9-2 with apprentice Orlando Foster riding for owner/trainer Patrick Lynch, made all the running for an easy victory in the $450,000 - $400,000 claiming race for the Paul Newman Memorial Cup over a mile, winning by 31⁄2 lengths from COLD GROUND and the 3-5 favourite EASTWOOD, who chased MERU to the last furlong.
AUNT HILDA, fresh from a win in maiden company on the previous Saturday, romped the Titania Trophy race over 1,100 metres at odds of 7-1. The 3-y-o filly was ridden by top apprentice O'Brien White for owner/trainer Robert Alveranga.
On a day when the 4-6 favourite ZACONTHEATTACK was disqualified by the stewards after winning the 11th race, the handle (sales for the day) for the pre-Xmas race meet reached $40.6 million - the highest so far in 2014.