KINGSTON, Jamaica – Away since last November 2019, Rojorn Di Pilot’s preparation was spot on by trainer Wayne DaCosta for the sprinter’s return. Former six-time champion jockey Omar Walker put him in the front rank, and the colt sped to victory by a comfortable three lengths to get the Ash Wednesday (February 26) card underway.
The DaCosta stable added a second when Phillip Parchment rode Fake News to a six-length triumph in the fifth.
Walker also had a second trip to the winners’ enclosure when Key Witness won the ninth for conditioner Leroy Tomlinson.
The 2018 champion reinsman Anthony Thomas was at his absolute best in getting Lawrence Freemantle’s little filly, aptly named Just An Illusion to make most of the running in the day’s second.
The Anthony Nunes trained colt Generational (Linton Steadman) was expected to make a winning odds-on first appearance. However, having been the marginal leader 150 metres out the rally by Thomas’s mount turned possible victory into an illusion.
Twelve-year-old War Hero (Jerome Innis) won again. In scoring in the third at 16/1, the Wilfred Chin-conditioned gelding was in front at odds of 10/1 three weeks ago but in a less competitive line-up on that occasion, which makes this victory quite remarkable.
Half an hour later, defeat for Nunes speedy filly Task Force (Reyan Lewis) was not on the cards and she duly delivered by five lengths in the fourth.
It was a typically good day for the trainer/jockey combination when Prince Charles won the closing and feature 11th event, the Ash Wednesday Trophy. It was a three-timer for Lewis who, by dint of hard work, got the thoroughly inconsistent Gary Griffiths-trained Lazer Light to win the eighth at odds of 8/1. In the sixth, favourite Sea Cruise (Jawara Steadman), trained by Spencer Chung, predictably toting significant overweight had to settle for being runner-up to Johnny Wilmot’s Bay To Grey (Oshane Nugent) an all-the-way leader who scored by three lengths.
The hour reserved for the running of the sixth and seventh was productive for the Wilmot/Nugent alliance as Miss Linda Wray produced an irresistible burst of late speed to be in front by a half a length at the wire to close the stable’s double.