Fri | Jul 10, 2020

Wartime to take no prisoners today

Published:Saturday | March 21, 2020 | 12:20 AMAinsley Walters/Gleaner Writer
WARTIME (left) finishes a close second behind PRINCE CHARLES during racing at Caymanas Park on Wednesday, February 26.
WARTIME (left) finishes a close second behind PRINCE CHARLES during racing at Caymanas Park on Wednesday, February 26.

WARTIME could capitalise on what seems set to be a collapsing pace in this afternoon’s overnight allowance sprint as racing continues behind closed doors at Caymanas Park, though wagering will be permitted at off-track betting parlours, which have been set coronavirus-specific guidelines by the Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Commission.

HARRY’S TRAIN and PEKING CRUZ are set to go at each other, both suspect in a speed duel, which could very well include SERGEANT RECKLESS, who has run-on stablemates, DRUMMER BOY and UNCLE FRANK.

PEKING CRUZ returned off a five-month lay-up two Saturdays ago, hopelessly chasing PATRIARCH to the furlong pole, going five round, relegated to fourth at the wire, 11 lengths behind the winner in a six-horse field.

That was a great pipe opener for PEKING CRUZ, who is now down in class, back among overnight allowance company, where he last won on September 25, beating LOTTERY TICKET and REIGNING KING at five furlong straight.

However, United States-bred HARRY’S TRAIN, running at 110lb with Dane Dawkins aboard, could prove bothersome for PEKING CRUZ, who is nine pounds heavier, even with Richard Azan calling in claiming apprentice Anthony Allen.

PEKING CRUZ should be sharper, second run off the lay-up, but HARRY’S TRAIN has improved with lasix administered for her last two runs and cheekpieces fitted by trainer Ian Parsard. She might not be the most resolute of runners but HARRY’S TRAIN is light and going up against PEKING CRUZ, who didn’t voluntarily stay home for five months, suggesting he is far from being bulletproof in a speed duel, despite his back class.

Should the pace collapse, which could be the scenario, given that PEKING CRUZ might be suspect and HARRY’S TRAIN not liking to be eyeballed, the run-on sprinter net has to be cast wider, pulling in Wayne Parchment’s WARTIME, who was catching PRINCE CHARLES with very stride, going six and a half furlongs, on February 26.

Make or break

It will be make or break for WARTIME at the gate. If he turns for home within striking distance of the leaders, they’re dead to him. WARTIME’s problem is that he is not the quickest of horses from the gate and is often forced to enter the lane wide after getting caught behind runners.

WARTIME is among the lighter run-on horses and certainly the most race-fit, needing only a decent break with apprentice Raddesh Roman to keep the leaders in his cross hairs and pounce before topweight UNCLE FRANK gets rolling.