With racing seeking new superstar to create greater interest in the "Sport of Kings", the local racing industry is breathing a sigh of relief after watching the performances of the John O’Brien trained two-year-old Shes So Spectacula on Boxing Day (December 26) last year and his two three-year-old performers this season.
Clearly, O’Brien has the fire-power to win the "Triple Crown" events but can one horse master all the others and T&T see another "Triple Crown" winner.
When asked about last year's juvenile champion, Shes So Spectacula which is owned by Chevan Maharaj, O'Brien said, "So far she has proven to be the best juvenile in training and she has shown that she is a very good filly. However, there are many other three-year-olds which are going to make their debut in 2019, so we cannot just believe that she will win the 'Triple Crown'. However, she must be considered as one of the top three-year-olds to go for that special 'Triple Crown' victories. She will be very competitive this year.”
Two weeks ago, the aptly named three-year-old colt Making Headlines burst into the "Classic" picture when he bolted home by 12 3/4 lengths in the feature grade three Royal Colours Classic for native bred three-year-olds over 1,350 metres.
The O'Brien trained thoroughbred has been beaten by Early Bird in both his starts as a juvenile but in recent times has shown that he has trained on as a three-year-old and won like a "Triple Crown" horse.
However, the manner in which the Ruthven Smith owned Making Headlines won clearly, underlines the headache which O’Brien will have in the coming months.
What made this performance even more impressive was the fact that the second favourite, Making Headlines, was slowly away and was in the tenth position, some 15 lengths off the leaders after 300m in the event.
Coming to the corner, Mon Cheri sneaked into the lead on the inside of Leonardo Prayer which travelled well for his first run in public as Early Bid and Cool Cat stayed in touch with Making Headlines coming with a bold bid on the outside of the field.
As the horses swung for home, Kerron Khelawan's mount Making Headlines swept into the lead and that was the end on the event, as he strolled clear in style just as sire Headline News did years ago. The winning distance clearly showed that he is a horse going places as he registered the time of 1:22.09, which was a full second faster than that which was recorded by both Shes So Spectacula and Regal Intension on Boxing Day.
To add insult to injury, last week O’Brien introduced a three-year-old called Apocalypse which fairly bolted up by nine lengths on debut over 1,350m. The three-year-old dark, bay gelding by Nuclear Wayne/Classic Princess was well away and the Anthony Wight opened horse was delivered to challenge at the corner by Nobel Abrego and he fairly exploded away from Marengo which finished second. He is certainly on for all notebooks.
O'Brien now has the top three three-year-olds in his stable in Apocalypse, Shes So Spectacula and Making Headlines.