Crucial Appeal wins CTL's final feature
Yesterday's race meet at Caymanas Park marked the end of an era, as Supreme Ventures will assume responsibility for the racing complex, effective Tuesday, March 7, this through the divestment process.
Although the track will retain its name, Caymanas Track Limited (CTL), previously the sole promoters of horse racing in Jamaica, will now hand over to Supreme Ventures Racing and Entertainment Limited, a subsidiary of gaming giant Supreme Ventures Limited.
This being the last meet before the takeover, CTL directed that there would be no carry-overs in exotic bets. As a result, mandatory payments were made after the last race on the Pick-9, Super-6, Pick-4, Triple and Hi-five wagers.
Meanwhile, the management of Supreme Ventures has already had meetings with various stakeholders.
When contacted during the races at Caymanas Park yesterday, Paul Hoo, chairman of Supreme Ventures Limited, said further meetings are scheduled for tomorrow with the owners, breeders and OTB franchise owners to pave the way for a smooth transition on Tuesday morning.
Meanwhile, yesterday's meet, which saw each of the races run in honour of CTL directors and an the open allowance feature in honour of Finance Minister Audley Shaw, saw six favourites being unsaddled in the winners' enclosure.
They included CRUCIAL APPEAL at 6-5 in the Hon Audley Shaw Trophy over the straight, the seven-year-old gelding coming through on the stands' side early in the last furlong to beat hat-trick seeker GARY GLITTER (2-1) and long-time leader SIR BUDGET (5-2) by 23/4 lengths in a field of nine.
Ridden by three-time champion Dane Nelson for trainer Dwight Chen and owner Howard Hamilton, CRUCIAL APPEAL covered the distance in near track record time of 56.4 behind splits of 22.2, 44.3.
Earlier in the afternoon, 4-5 favourite SUPREME MAGIC beat 7-2 chance on the wire to lift the Roderick 'Pilot' Francis Memorial Cup (claiming $180,000) over 1200 metres, with Shamaree Muir riding for trainer Neive Graham and popular owner O'Shaun Connection.
The Hon Fayval Williams Trophy over 1400 metres saw 8-1 chance ROGAMMA winning in a driving finish from 3-2 favourite LAWS OF THE CODE to give trainer Richard Azan his first win of the season.