Another Vigorous to lift St Catherine Cup
ANOTHER VIGOROUS has transformed from a tearaway sprinter to a more relaxed running style, which should suit him when he goes for a second straight win among open-allowance company in this afternoon's St Catherine Cup at five and a half furlongs.
Vastly improved since the back end of last season, ANOTHER VIGOROUS certainly made a case for grade-one recognition with a commanding victory in the seven-furlong Gladiator Trophy on December 29, flooring imported HILLY'S HALO after tracking two of the fastest horses in training - MR UNIVERSE and PATRIARCH.
A seven-and-a-quarter length romp in overnight allowance company, facing RADICAL and company at seven furlongs on December 1, after losing to NUCLEAR FLIGHT at five furlongs straight in November, was followed by a smashing victory, up in class, in the Gladiator Trophy, ANOTHER VIGOROUS' best performance to date, lowering his 1:25.2 to 1:25.0.
Though he has risen five pounds in the scale, ANOTHER VIGOROUS' only real threat ought to be old rival NUCLEAR FLIGHT, who has beaten him twice, as many times as he has returned the favour. However, her victories against him were both at five furlongs straight.
NUCLEAR FLIGHT's issues continue to constrain her training, hence her having only raced seven times, yet to venture in excess of five furlongs. Though she will only carry 110lb, NUCLEAR FLIGHT, if she breaks well, will have company on the lead as Anthony Nunes' EXHILARATE only knows how to run from in front.
Carrying 117lb in the Gladiator, ANOTHER VIGOROUS attacked HILLY'S HALO and MR UNIVERSE, three wide, at the top of the lane and sprinted off for a measured victory over late-closing ANOTHER BULLET, who was woefully outsped.
ANOTHER BULLET's connections have shot themselves in the foot for the rematch, summoning Barbadian Simon Husbands to ride at 126lb, at a furlong and a half shorter, after the seven-year-old could get into the pace when apprentice-ridden at 116lb in the Gladiator.
Though he has won back-to-back races at seven furlongs, a new-found love for middle distances, ANOTHER VIGOROUS' overall improvement suggests cutting back to five and a half furlongs should not be a problem against what is really weaker opposition.
EXHILARATE is getting her first taste of open-allowance pace and is not expected to be much of a hurdle to the run-on sprinters, even if NUCLEAR FLIGHT gets off to one of her infamously poor starts. Either way, ANOTHER VIGOROUS will have the lead in his cross hairs, making him extremely tough to beat in the run for the wire.