Trainer Pesi Shroff is on a rampage in the ongoing Pune racing season having already notched up 14 winners in the six days of racing that has taken place. His horses look so superior that the others in the fray simply have no chance. Yet again on Sunday, he had a rich haul of three winners including the richly endowed 1200 metres Villoo C Poonawalla Million, a race for maiden three-year-olds, the feature event of the day. Presidential swamped the opposition in a tremendous fashion leaving the field dead in the final furlong for an emphatic win.
Presidential who is a full brother to the well-performed Pune Derby-winning Pioneer, showed a brilliant burst of speed when alerted to the task by jockey Pradeep Chouhan and stormed beyond the reach of the rest in the final furlong. Fast Rain ran on late to be an impressive second ahead of Mystical Rose. The fancied duo of Key To The Mint and Pure ran without hope, floored by the brilliance of the eventual winner in a race which was run at a brisk pace, with the first four runners clocking below one minute 10 seconds. The quality of the field was good which is what enhances the value of Presidential`s brilliance. Enjoying a dream run along with Pesi is his stable jockey Pradeep Chouhan.
The four-year-old filly Enigma has been in a brilliant form and barring the first run of her career where she lost more due to the mistake of her jockey, the progeny of Phoenix Tower has been in blazing form. She recorded her third straight win, drubbing the opposition in the 1200 metres Moosa M Hoosein Trophy, a race for horses rated 40 to 66. Apprentice jockey Kritish Bhagat who is growing in confidence brought Enigma wide into the straight, circling round the field and despite which, the favourite proved too good, taking command of the race well before the final furlong with a blistering turn of foot. Red Merlot ran on to take the second position ahead of Cellini.
The first race of the season for two-year-olds went the way of favourite Dear Lady in the 1200 metres Dr P K Sardeshmukh Maharaj Trophy. Dear Lady fought it out with Hawk of the Wind in the final furlong before asserting her supremacy in the closing stages of the race, winning by a margin of over two lengths. Trainer Rakesh from Mysore had three runners in this race and they occupied the slots behind the runner-up.
The other horse from Pesi Shroff to have a bold show was Northern Lights who was knocking on the doors of success. Vincenzo and Ciplad had their share of supporters which resulted in a higher quote for Northern Lights. The opposition had no answer when Northern Lights unleashed a lethal run in the stretch to storm clear of the field for a win by a widening margin of four lengths. Vincenzo nosed out Fassbinder to take the second spot. Ciplad who stayed in touch with the field till the final bend disappeared without a trace when the race picked up steam.
Trainer Karthik Ganapathy picked up both the divisions of the Polished Chrome Plate (Div I), a race for the lowest category horses. Trinket who had been ambitiously campaigned even in the classics was now back in the lowest category and was backed confidently to land the spoils. Apprentice jockey Vinod Trinket guided the fancied runner to victory, staving off the late bid of Accenture which had the services of successful apprentice Kritish Bhagat who was hoping for the third win of the day. Cognosco was third. Hellbent who had not run within proximity of the winners was in serious betting but could only manage fifth place. Little More was another in the betting who led in the early part only to weaken miserably in the straight. Lambretta won the lower division of the race quite competently in the hands of jockey Bhawani Singh where favourite Fortune Cookie found the eventual winner too hot to handle.
Long shot Zarak from the stables of trainer S Waheed brought off a big upset in the 1800 metres, a race for maiden three-year-olds, with a powerful run down the final furlong to win by a widening margin of three lengths. Aah Bella proved no match and was a well-beaten second ahead of Hela. Pesi Shroff trained Lord Byron who was showing out in the workouts was backed with conviction but the favourite made no show, losing steam midway through the race to eventually finish poorly.
Imtiaz Sait trained Endeavour was coming on the back of an impressive run which suggested that the four-year-old had touched top form and he would be ready to strike. Accordingly, Endeavour was backed to the exclusion of the rest in the 1000 metres Cowas Nair Trophy (Div I), a race for horses rated 20 to 46. Despite travelling going wide at the final bend, Endeavour packed so much punch that he won sparing more than six lengths at the finish to Perfect Perfecto who nosed out Fuhrer to keep the second position. Nazak Chenoy trained Sovereign Master easily measured El Capitan in the lower division of the race. El Capitan who had some impressive efforts to his credit, seems to have lost the aura as evidenced by his recent timid performances. La Peregrina was third.