Sat | Apr 4, 2020

Mr Universe to take full control

Published:Wednesday | August 1, 2018 | 12:00 AMAinsley Walters/Gleaner Writer

MR UNIVERSE sent a clear warning at exercise last Wednesday. After cantering away from the winning post, the four-year-old chestnut colt blazed the last five furlongs in 59.4, a time none of his eight rivals might have been able to clock in an actual race.

In fact, three of those he will face in this afternoon's five-and-a-half furlong Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Commission BGLC Trophy - WONG DON, ANOTHER BULLET and ORPHEUS - were a dozen or more lengths behind him at six furlongs in the Jamaica Racing Commission Hall of Fame Stakes on June 23.

After that run, clocked in a super-fast 1:11.1, MR UNIVERSE tested the waters in the grade one Reggae Trophy two and a half weeks ago, one of three Wayne DaCosta runners in the seven-horse line-up in which SIEMPRE BUENO from the rival barn of Anthony Nunes was the favourite.




However, MR UNIVERSE was really up against it, taking on CHACE THE GREAT and SIEMPRE BUENO, established grade one sprinters. With the odds against him and no chance of leading an event, which he couldn't win from behind either, MR UNIVERSE ran an even race, finishing four and a half lengths fourth off CHACE THE GREAT, SIEMPRE BUENO and MONEY MAGNET.

Slipping back down to open allowance for the BGLC Trophy, MR UNIVERSE will run 11lb heavier than when he last won at the level, now slapped with topweight 126lb.

However, it's now a half-furlong shorter with no matching speed to get MR UNIVERSE off his game plan, which is to make every post a winning one. Fortunately, for him and rider Gary Richards, those horses are in the class above, where he is expected to compete after the formalities of a second victory among open allowance horses.

The Emancipation Day Trophy co-feature, a six-and-a-half furlong event, optional $850,000 claiming, seems a good fit for SHINING LIGHT, who placed fourth in a similar race behind LOOSE CANNON, closing at five furlongs round, on June 23.