Orville Clarke, Gleaner Writer
Today's eight-race programme at Caymanas Park will be highlighted by the ninth running of the Sports Journalists of Jamaica Trophy (claiming $350,000-$300,000) over 1200 metres, to be contested by 11 starters.
Despite the race having a knotty look about it, victory should go to the consistent RUN CHARM RUN, to be ridden by champion jockey Dick Cardenas for trainer Ray Phillips.
The five-year-old mare by Burning Marque out of the Royal Minister mare Tawnee Princess reports in good nick following her close third to ZARA over 1300 metres on May 30. She catches my fancy from the convenient mark of 53.0kg.
Six weeks prior to that, she won over today's trip, coming through a furlong out to score by 2 1/4 lengths from CASHMERE GOLD and subsequent winner FABULOUSCONNECTION.
She was beaten into fifth place by MUMBAI MAESTRO and INVICTUS again over the distance on May 5, but renews rivalry with both on vastly improved terms at the weights and should turn the tables.
MUMBAI MAESTRO WORSE OFF
The grey MUMBAI MAESTRO (Shane Ellis up) now shoulders top weight of 57.0kg, which makes him 4.0kg worse off with RUN CHARM RUN.
Others such as the lightly raced 3-y-o colt, AL-AFIRTIE, now thrown in for a tag by trainer Gary Subratie, along with the speedy LOVETTA JONES, REGGAE PRINCESS and down-in-class DOCTOR DEVIOUS will have their share of supporters. DOCTOR DEVIOUS is more adept at middle distances, but now stepping down two classes must be a dangerous opponent even with the trip reduced.
However, RUN CHARM RUN is so genuine that she gets the vote in a tough-looking race. She has the pace to race in close touch of the leaders and the stretch kick to take home this trophy ahead of DOCTOR DEVIOUS and LOVETTA JONES.
Elsewhere on the card which commences 2:15 p.m., the unbeaten American 3-y-o filly HUPOMONE should have little difficulty in making it five straight against five opponents in the open-allowance race over the round course.
Conditioned by champion trainer Wayne DaCosta, HUPOMONE won in another fast time on May 26 over 1200 metres in overnight company and although up in class today, she ought to be followed until her colours are lowered.
Although set to carry some 2.0kg over weight for the services of leading jockey Dane Nelson, HUPOMONE, with 52.0kg, should go all the way to win from stable-companion CLASSY PROSPECT and the consistent PALACE GOLD.
Other firm fancies on the card are down-in-class AWESOME MARQUE to stave off THE VALIDICTORIAN in the opening race over 1600 metres, RHINESTONE COWBOY in the third, ALL IS MINE in the fifth, and I AM THANKFUL in the eighth and final.