Champion owner makes changes, Nipster moved to Anthony Nunes as part of diversification process

Trainer Gary Subratie (left) and Michael Bernard.
Trainer Gary Subratie (left) and Michael Bernard.

KINGSTON, Jamaica – CHAMPION owner for the last two years Michros, in a move to again diversify his racing stock, has started to shift some of his horses from his regular trainer Gary Subratie to other conditioners.

On Sunday (January 3, 2021), St Leger winner and one of the main candidates for Horse of the Year honours Nipster, along with two as-yet-unraced three-year-olds, were moved to the stables of champion trainer for the last two years, Anthony “Baba” Nunes.

The two three-year-olds are a chestnut colt by Perfect Curlin – Nuclear Affair, the dam being a past winner of the 1000 Guineas and a bay filly by Perfect Curlin – Sarah Barracuda which makes the latter a half-sister to Wow Wow. Interestingly, the sire of the two three-year-olds, Perfect Curlin had his first winner, Sure Curlin on New Year’s Day.

Michros is the nomenclature used by well-known owner and breeder Michael Bernard, who had his best year ever as an owner and a breeder with the likes of the aforementioned Nipster and Wow Wow plus the talented filly Another Affair and older horse Duke.

“At present, I am in the process of effecting a rationalisation programme for my racing horses of which there are 14.

“After careful analysis, including deliberations with the individuals involved, I have taken the decision to place my horses across more than one trainer, mainly to spread the risk of ownership and to benefit from other training styles.

“This is not something new in my time as an owner and a breeder, as in the past I have had my various horses in the shed rows of a number of other trainers. Just as a reminder, at the start of last year I had six horses with another trainer and they were subsequently moved to the Subratie barn, and at one stage I had horses with three trainers at one time.

“So, what I am doing now is resuming that particular agenda and spreading out my horses again,” Bernard told this website.

It was noticeable at the back-end of the last racing year that Bernard was making moves to reduce his stock of racing horses.

“As part of my rationalisation programme I decided to trim the number of horses I had racing in order to achieve a better economy of scale and further down, to diversify – which is what I am doing now.

“Horses like Bold Smile, Soul Cure, Bold Sami and Better Best were all placed in claiming races and were claimed. Then Pharoah It Is, Chitu Prince and just recently Crimson were sold by private treaty.

“In addition, My Switcharoo was sent to stud and unfortunately Bold Aflair died on the racetrack.

“The process, therefore, of diversification has been a long time in the making and at the start of this year I am simply resuming this process which was made known to all concerned several months ago,” the champion owner shared.

Commenting on the move by Bernard, Subratie said: “We (Michael) and myself have been together for a while and we have had many successes but I understand his desire to diversify and as such I wish him well.”

With the addition of Nipster, the recent victor in the rich Ian Levy Cup, to his barn Nunes now has the two top-rated horses currently racing at the Park, Nipster and Toona Ciliata.

Wow Wow, Another Affair, Duke, recent two-year-old winners Nuclear Noon and Sure Curlin, along with four untried three-year-olds and two maiden three-year-olds, remain under the care of Subratie.

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