Drummer Boy ready to rumble in Jamaica Derby
MARQUESAS, last year’s two-year-old champion and a trio of three-year-old classic winners – COMMANDER TWO, DRUMMER BOY and the filly FAYROUZ – square off in Saturday’s $8m Jamaica Derby at Caymanas Park, going 2400 metres..
Trainer Patrick Lynch’s COMMANDER TWO, the mount of apprentice Javaniel Patterson, has the most impressive resume of the quarter, unbeaten in his last four races, but is yet to race beyond a mile over which he won the 2000 Guineas in April.
FAYROUZ showed her appreciation for a distance of ground and trainer Anthony Nunes refitting her with a visor by romping the fillies-only Jamaica Oaks over 2000 metres, a seven-length runaway victory, which was followed by a decent win at a mile against older horses three weeks ago.
Non-claiming apprentice Linton Steadman is aboard FAYROUZ, who is attempting to emulate SHE’S A MANEATER, who beat the colts and gelding last year, the 14th filly to have done so since BLUSH won the first Jamaica Derby at Caymanas Park in 1959.
Champion trainer Wayne DaCosta’s DRUMMER BOY is vastly improved and has the experience of veteran jockey Gary Richards, who guided the bay colt to a comfortable win in the 2000-metre Lotto Classic Governor’s Cup a month ago.
DRUMMER BOY turned the tables on MARQUESAS, who had finished ahead of him in the Guineas. MARQUESAS, however, is expected to relish the distance with Shane Ellis aboard. He has been staying on strongly at the end of his races despite failing to win in three starts since December’s Jamaica Two-Year-Old Stakes.
COMMANDER TWO’s main weapon is speed, which he will try to use to slip the 16-horse field. However, DRUMMER BOY also has good pace and has derby pedigree on his side, Natural Selection, sire of last year’s winner, SHE’S A MANEATER, FUTURE KING, who was disqualified the year before and PERFECT NEIGHBOUR, who won in 2012.
The Jamaica Derby is the 11th of 12 races scheduled and is set to run off at 5:15 p.m.
First post is 11:20 a.m.