By Neto Baptiste
Two of Antigua and Bartbuda’s top thoroughbred horses will, once again, represent the twin-island state at the prestigious Sandy Lane Gold Cup in Barbados, slated for 7th March.
Thoroughbreds Baba-Baba and Scrumpum, both coming out of the God’s Grace Stables, are slated to compete in Barbados next month with Baba-Baba running in the Gold Cup, and Scrumpum competing in sprint race.
President of the Antigua Turf Club (ATC) Neil Cochrane said recent and consistent showers have limited the preparation of the horses.
“The horses have been entered into the respective races and Baba-Baba will, again, attempt to be fully qualified for the Gold Cup and the sprint race which is going to be for Scrumpum. So those two horses are in preparation and it’s been difficult for them again because they don’t have a track here that allows them to really do the type of pace work that they want to, but they have been swimming a lot and they have been going back to the old time training of going to some nice areas where they could get those exercises in,” he said.
This would be Baba-Baba’s second year at the Barbados meet, after competing alongside stable-mate Molatto in 2019.
Cochrane said the owners and other officials involved have decided to take a different approach this time around.
“The intention is to get to Barbados, by next week latest, that they would be in Barbados for at least one month before the race and the opportunity for at least one prep race in Barbados before the big day is also on the cards to get the horse acclimatized on the surface and as well as [running] in a different direction [than in Antigua],” he said.
Baba-Baba and Molatto were both unsuccessful in their bid to impress at the coveted regional meet last year. The thoroughbreds finished back of the pack in their respective races, with Baba-Baba ending 10th in the 10-horse Gold Cup, and Mulatto finishing last in the nine-horse Sandy Lane Spa Sprint.