Nelson reins in Thomas with four-timer
DANE Nelson and Anthony Thomas accounted for six of yesterday’s 10 races in their battle for the jockeys’ championship.
Thomas, who had victories in the third and fourth races astride SMOKEY TOPAZ and SECRET TRAVELLER, respectively, had his 15-win lead reduced to 13 by Nelson, who, up to the fourth event, trailed his rival by 17 winners.
Nelson responded with a flurry of four consecutive victories. The 2012-14 champion rider, whose annual winter break from Northlands racetrack in Edmonton, Canada, has turned into a stay-at-home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, started his roll by landing the fifth event with 5-2 shot GENERAL MUBARAK.
Nelson brought the six-year-old gelding with a rail run in the six-furlong sprint for the Clifford Stewart Memorial, leading past LADY CARMEN and CAT’S RIGGER a furlong out.
TRULY AMAZING recovered from a bad stumble at the start of the sixth at five furlongs straight to outsprint rivals, starting a two-timer for the jockey-trainer combination of Nelson and Spencer Chung.
Nelson also had to work overtime for his third winner, rousing Anthony Nunes’ two-year-old debutant, SANTORINI, to collar long-time leader, JAHSENDBLESSINGS, a half-furlong out, going five and a half, for the Rhoel Rhoden Memorial.
Nelson closed his four-timer and Chung’s double by breaking CHIEF OF STATE sharply at four furlongs straight to go all the way in the eighth as the 4-5 favourite.
Racing continues on Friday, a meet originally slated for Monday’s Heroes Day, but rescheduled due to the 3:00 p.m. COVID-19 holiday curfew.