Orville Clarke, Gleaner Writer
Popular apprentice Prince Holder, aka 'Daggerman', finally opened his account at Caymanas Park yesterday, winning the two principal races on the 10-race programme aboard 17-1 outsider NO SMOKING and highly fancied SMOKIN MAN in the fourth and ninth races, respectively.
Holder produced the Tensang Chung-trained NO SMOKING (chased) approaching the distance to overhaul long-time leader DIVINITY, going on to win the day's feature (claiming $180,000) over 2000 metres for the Monica Todd Memorial Cup.
The win by Holder, who stands just under four feet tall, was greeted with tremendous applause and much excitement by racing fans. NO SMOKING only had to be pushed out to win by four lengths from 9-5 chance KEEPIN THE PROMISE and 8-5 favourite FEELINGINTHESLIPS in a field of nine.
Later in the afternoon, Holder came back to win the 3-y-o-and-up overnight allowance race over the straight-five course aboard 2-1 second favourite SMOKIN MAN for owner/trainer Raymond Townsend.
The 4-y-o grey colt made all, angling away from the number-one post position coming out of the chute to beat PALACE GUARD by 33/4 lengths in a field of eight.
first career win
After notching his first career win aboard NO SMOKING, Holder, who was one of 19 apprentices who started riding on September 8, having graduated from the Jockeys' School, was able to breathe a sigh of relief. He had finished second aboard a number of his mounts on the five previous racedays, but it was only a matter of time before he would impact. And he was elated.
"I dreamt of this moment for a long time and words cannot describe the feeling of finally winning a race," said the 21-year-old, who is a former student of Maggotty High.
"I couldn't believe the reception from racing fans on returning to the winners' enclosure and I enjoy being a jockey," he added.
Also riding two winners were fellow apprentice Shamaree Muir (The Validictorian, Lovetta Jones), Omar Walker (Uncle Taf, Flutist) and champion jockey Dick Cardenas (She's Emma, Herbious Corpus).
Trainer Patrick 'Wacky' Lynch saddled three winners (Flutist, Herbious Corpus, Perfect Flyer) to emerge the day's top performer.