Fit Campesino to outrun Open Allowance field at Caymanas Park
CAMPESINO, who has been a model of consistency in recent months, should snap his string of second-place finishes by winning today's three-year-old and up open-allowance race, to be contested by seven starters over 1200 metres at Caymanas Park.
Trained by 14-time champion Philip Feanny, the six-year-old gelding will come face to face with main rivals POTCHEEN, the 2014 champion sprinter, and the speedy hat-trick seeker ROYAL ASSAULT, both of whom should ensure a highly competitive race.
POTCHEEN is the most accomplished in the field, having won the Gold Cup and Caribbean Sprint Championship over this trip. However, the seven-year-old gelding from the stables of Harry Parsard has had his fair share of fitness issues last year and did not do as well, winning only one of his seven races. But the late-kicking son of Traditional-Bubble Gum Hottie has been looking up at exercise since finishing ninth in the rich Diamond Mile on December 5 and now dropped in class with champion jockey Shane Ellis aboard, will only go down fighting.
CAMPESINO, on the other hand, was always competitive in good company during the last quarter, notably when finishing second to POKER STAR over the distance in the fast-run Caribbean Sprint Championship on November 14.
Having finished a neck second to PHINEAS in the Gladiator Trophy over 1400 metres on December 19, a close second to POKER STAR in the fast-run St Catherine Cup over 1100 metres on January 2 and also second to LONG RUNNING TRAIN over a mile in subsequent races, CAMPESINO is due for a change of luck.
The son of Compadre-Yaella notched his last win over this trip on October 24, beating subsequent Superstakes winner FRANFIELD and with Feanny securing the services of promising 3.0kg claiming apprentice, Odean Edwards, reducing the weight to 53.0kg, CAMPESINO should bring race fitness into play and stave off topweight POTCHEEN in the closing stages.
Other firm fancies on the 10-race programme are MIND SET in the first race over a mile; the speedy three-year-old colt DREAMLINER to rebound under four-time champion jockey Omar Walker in the third; course specialist AGAKHAN with leading jockey Dane Nelson in the fifth over the straight; as well as NATASHADONTPAY in the seventh.