Watch Nunes in Guineas
Top trainer Anthony ‘Baba’ Nunes has high hopes for BILINGUAL in the 1000 Guineas for native bred three year old fillies over 1600 metres at Caymanas Park this Saturday.
However, he is not as optimistic about the chances of his colt, last year's champion two-year-old SOTOMAYOR in the 2000 Guineas but he is hoping the grey colt turns up in his best form for the season's first classic, following a minor injury setback earlier in the year.
Nunes says BILINGUAL (to be ridden by Robert Halledeen) will face tough challenges from the likes of SHE'S A MAN EATER, MARLENE MY LOVE and MONEY MAGNET but he believes his filly has what it takes to get the job done.
"She's a nice filly and I thought she ran very well in the trials (Thornbird Stakes on March 18) and I think she will give a very good account of herself," Nunes said. BILINGUAL was a fast finishing third behind SHE'S A MANEATER, beaten by just over two lengths.
He added: "It will be a competitive race. Her main rivals are SHE'S A MAN EATER, MARLENE MY LOVE and MONEY MAGNET. But I have more than one horse in all the races and I have faith in all of them."
Nunes also hopes SOTOMAYOR, to be ridden by apprentice Linton Steadman, can regain the form which saw him win the Supreme Ventures Jamaica 2-year-old Stakes last December but he is a bit cautious.
"He has been working ... but it shows that he hasn't improved since he has turned three. He has been running against older horses (this season), so we will have to wait and see (what he will do) now that he is running against his own age group again," Nunes said.
SOTOMAYOR was scheduled to race in an overnight allowance event in February but was declared a late non-starter due to injury. He later made his season debut in the Ash Wednesday trophy but finished way off the pace in eighth. With the colt now fully recovered an improved run is expected on Saturday.
"I have no explanation (why things turned that way for him), there is nothing physically wrong with him... So I am very disappointed in his development ... But I am just hoping he turns up," he continued.
SOTOMAYOR's main rivals in the 2000 Guineas will be Prince Consort Stakes winner FEARLESS SAMURAI, DON CHASSIS, MARKET FORCE.
The draw for Saturday's race meet took place at Caymanas Park yesterday. BILINGUAL is drawn at gate 12 and SOTOMAYOR at four.