Gold Cup fever is beginning to warm up

BY LINDON YARDE | SUN, FEBRUARY 27, 2011 |  WWW.NATIONNEWS.COM

The first set of overseas entrants has arrived in the island ahead of Saturday’s big horse race at the Garrison Savannah.

The horses arrived at the Grantley Adams International Airport from Miami last Tuesday morning and were transported to the quarantine station at the Garrison.

Creating quite a stir, these top class animals caught the attention of a few rail birds, who took time out from watching gallops, to get a first-hand look at the imports.

Arriving from Canada was the Eugene Melnyk – owned, Safety Zone, a seven-year-old bay gelding who will compete in the 30th Sandy Lane Barbados Gold Cup over 1 800 metres.

Another entrant making the successful arrival was stablemate Emerald Crescent, a nice looking five-year-old chestnut gelding, who is a reserve for the Sandy Lane Spa Sprint over 1 100 metres. Both horses are trained by champion Canadian trainer Mark Cassey.

Not to be left out, the United States entrants have had late fee penalties paid up by their owners, and one of the two representatives competing on Gold Cup Day is Averill Racing LLC-owned Grand Times.

This is a four-year-old dark bay/brown gelding. Blessed with speed, he will compete in the Sandy Lane Spa Sprint.

The second United States runner is the five-year-old chestnut gelding Grand Cash. He is a winner of his last start over one mile and 1/16.

He will represent Silver Oak and M and G Stables in the prestigious Gold Cup.

Both horses are trained by former jockey Wesley Ward, who is campaigning at the Gulfstream meeting in Florida.

Trinidad and Tobago’s lone representative Tres Amigos – owned Just Call Me Roger has been in the island for over a month and has been working well.

The other overseas entrants are expected to arrive in Barbados today from St Kitts.

Race fans can go to the historic site and witness these horses going through their paces on the grass track on Tuesday morning.

The draw for positions was made at the world renowned Sandy Lane Hotel last Thursday at 11 a.m. and there was a street parade through Bridgetown yesterday.

Grand Cash, a five-year-old chestnut gelding from the United States, was a winner in his last start.