Fri | Oct 19, 2018

Precarious Patriarch set to reign

Published:Tuesday | December 26, 2017 | 12:54 AMAinsley Walters

ANTHONY Nunes’ unbeaten PATRIARCH will either win the Supreme Ventures Limited (SVL) Jamaica Two-Year-Old Stakes in his now familiar domineering fashion or suffer a major upset, should his odd exercise reports be taken on face value.

In one of the poorest fields assembled in decades, PATRIARCH stands out like a sore thumb in a bandage, yet to lose in five starts, each victory being more convincing than the last.

So lackluster has the competition been, save ANOTHER VIGOROUS’ brave bid in the Cash Pot Only One For Me Trophy, it is almost forgettable that PATRIARCH is on the cusp of sweeping the SVL Two-Year-Old Series.

ANOTHER VIGOROUS, the only horse to have extended PATRIARCH, has been injured, leaving his peers to the mercy, rather none thereof, of Nunes’ colt, who literally wins his races at the start, dislocating rivals after the first furlong.

However, PATRIARCH’s well-being has been under the microscope of railbirds ever since he won the Cash Pot Trophy in October, beating ANOTHER VIGOROUS by three-quarter length in a driving finish.

After the 1200-metre Cash Pot Trophy, PATRIARCH, quite unlike Nunes’ style, was not asked to put down a speed gallop at exercise ahead of the Juvenile Sprint going a half-furlong longer in November.

Though sceptical, punters had very little to choose from by way of competition because ANOTHER VIGOROUS failed to face the starter, leaving Nunes’ runner as the 2-5 favourite.

Despite loud whispers about Wayne DaCosta’s BRANDY and GREEK GODDESS, PATRIARCH turned the Juvenile Sprint into a farce, which he repeated in last month’s Pick-3 Super challenge at seven furlongs, again, with no speed gallop at exercise.

Interestingly, Nunes has asked PATRIARCH to work three furlongs out the gate, twice in a week, ahead of the Two-Year-Old Stakes, the most he has done, in terms of speed gallops, for his last two races.

There has been all sort of arguments swirling among railbirds as to what his ailment may be. However, what has been noticeable among Nunes’ stablehands, certainly after PATRIARCH’s last three races, is that they were in a mighty hurry to cool down the colt with buckets of water after each victory.

PATRIARCH’s weapon is his speed. None of his seven rivals have ever dipped below the sonic radar of sub-1:12.0 for six furlongs, which he does with ease before kicking on again.

Though he has never gone a mile, neither have six of his eight rivals, the maiden filly HOT ICE being the only exception, a third-place finish in her last race, which certainly does not bring her into contention.

Therefore, if PATRIARCH’s not broken, why try to fix him?

PS: BIGDADDYKOOL must be breathing a sigh of relief – no SHE’S A MANEATER around in the 12-furlong Harry Jackson Memorial after raining on his parade in the Superstakes and Diamond Mile. He now gets the chance to beat up on stablemate HOUDINI’S MAGIC and WILL IN CHARGE. However, he better put every foot right with topweight 57.0 kilos.