The second subscription stage for the March 4, 2017 Sandy Lane Gold Cup closed at the Barbados Turf Club’s offices last Friday.
The list of 17 is headed by Sir Dudley Digges owned by Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey of the USA. Sir Dudley Digges had won the one million dollar Queens Plate for three-year-olds at Woodbine Race Track in Canada last year and if he comes will be the first horse ever to win a million dollar event to race in Barbados. Sir Dudley Digges also heads the list as the highest rated horse and was given a Gold Cup rating of 140 by the Gold Cup rating committee.
Ramsey, who has won two of the last three editions of the Sandy Lane Gold Cup, finished second last year with Watch Your Own Bobber. The leading owner at more than five USA tracks in 2016 also hasCoal Port, High Noon Rider and Key Stone For Victory entered at the second stage.
Trinidad and Tobago which placed second with Nominee in the 2014 running of the richest race in the Caribbean ($200 000 prize money) has entered Conquest Bespoke, owned by Shivam Maharaj. Conquest Bespoke who was imported from Woodbine, has won once from five starts breaking his maiden with Barbadian jockey Patrick Husbands on the turf in Canada.
Conquest Bespoke was given a Gold Cup rating of 108. The gelding by the stallion Speightstown had ran second in the Trinidad Gold Cup on Boxing Day 2016 on the sand surface.
Trinidad’s other entry is the five-year-old colt Trini Navigator owned by Baskaran Bassawh. Trini Navigator was given a Gold Cup rating of 90 by the handicap rating committee.
Of the Barbados team, last year’s defending champion Dorsett heads the list with a Gold Cup rating of 124. Next in line is Just A Fashion which is rated at 123. Then there are Nikitta, Indiano Jones, Daunting David, Infrared, Knight Rider, Princess Tiana, Inwon, Secret American and Nine Point Six Nine.
Everything is pointing to this year’s running being the best Gold Cup in the history of the race. Sir Dudley Digges’ entry has created a lot of buzz among race fans in Barbados. This could be the year for the biggest crowd to ever converge at the Garrison Savannah. The biggest crowd to ever grace the Garrison Savannah was the very first Gold Cup in 1982 when some 40 000 people saw Bold Lewis from Trinidad and Tobago take first prize.