Gandalf won the 2018 Massy United Insurance Barbados Derby at the Garrison Savannah yesterday, giving owners Bills Inc. their third win in the last five runnings of the island’s most prestigious classic.
Gandalf emulated his half-sibling Poetic Licence who was also owned by Bills Inc. and who won the 2015 running of the Derby also in similar front-running style. Bills Inc. also won the Derby in their first attempt with Voldemort in 2014.
Trainer Victor Cheeseman also went into the history books again yesterday. The soft-spoken and highly skilled trainer equalled the late great trainer Bill Marshall as the second person to train the first three finishers in the Derby. Bills Inc.’s second entry Brave Star ran off the pace to finish second while Jackmanny Gap finished. The latter is owned by Luther Miller. The Andrew Nunes-trained What You Think ran a corker to finish in fourth place.
Winning jockey Jalon Samuel was all smiles as he previously had to settle for second in the Derby on two occasions with Amanyara in 2010 and Summer Again in 2012. This time he was third time lucky winning the big race for the first time.
Breeder of Gandalf Phillip Mosley was an elated man having also bred Poetic Licence. Owners Bills Inc. became the second owners to finish first and second in the Derby as Melrose Stables had done with 2010 winner Leave It To Me and the second-placed Amanyara.
From the 10 furlong start, Jackmanny Gap and Jewel broke to the lead but were quickly passed by Gandalf as Samuel relaxed him beautifully, slowing down the pace on the front end.
At the three-furlong marker, Brave Star made a bold move once again as he did in the Guineas and Midsummer Classic but could not catch his stablemate having to finish second once again. Final time for the race was a quick 208.4, equalling the time of Northern Star who won the Derby in 2016.
The forecast paid $3 55, trifecta paid $23. 55 and Superfecta paid $269.10
Jalon Samuel and Anderson Trotman won two races apiece on the day leading the day’s jockey standings. Samuel won race 3 The Massy United Insurance Sky Mall Trophy Handicap with 2014 Derby winner Voldemort going 1100 meters before winning the Derby.
Trotman won the first two races on the day. Trotman who has the record for the most wins in Barbados history for a rider won the Massy United Insurance Sheraton Mall Trophy with Abigail with a well-timed ride. He then returned in race 2 with Good Vibration.
Trainer Victor Cheeseman won three races on the day leading all trainers; Voldemort, Gandalf and closing the day with Super Heights in the last race.