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UPDATE: Leave It to Bern wins debut race in St Thomas

Tortola’s debut horse, Leave It To Bern, emerged victorious in the Joseph 'Bob Love' Sprauve Memorial Race today, September 15, 2013 at the Clinton E. Phipps racetrack in St Thomas. Photo: Andre 'Shadow' Dawson
No clear winners are expected during today's postponed Labour Day races at the Clinton E. Phipps racetrack with the highest ever reported number of debuts. Photo: CM Farrington/File
No clear winners are expected during today's postponed Labour Day races at the Clinton E. Phipps racetrack with the highest ever reported number of debuts. Photo: CM Farrington/File
A high turnout is expected for the races given the level of interest displayed following the postponement of last week's Labour Day races. Photo: CM Farrington/File
A high turnout is expected for the races given the level of interest displayed following the postponement of last week's Labour Day races. Photo: CM Farrington/File
ST. THOMAS, USVI – Tortola’s debut horse, Leave It To Bern, emerged victorious in the Joseph "Bob Love" Sprauve Memorial Race today, September 15, 2013 at the Clinton E. Phipps racetrack in St Thomas.

The horse defeated two other newcomer in Break Up the Game and Prince of Speed as well as St Thomas’ Sweet Sight over one mile and 40 yards for the victory in the fifth of eight races for the day.

Break Up the Game placed second in the race.

Leave It to Bern, running out of the Boyz Stables, was the first horse to be part-purchased with funds received by the VI Horse Owners Association from a grant through the Ministry of Education and Culture.

More details to come.

See previous story posted September 15, 2013:

St Thomas races leave no clear winners with high number of debuts

ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI – With the exciting buildup that remained despite last week’s postponement of the Labour Day races in St Thomas, all eyes will be looking out today, September 15, 2013 for new names that emerge as leaders of the pack with the highest ever reported number of debuts.

Rodney Simmonds of the Boyz Stables expressed that he was feeling confident and comfortable ahead of the races scheduled for the Clinton E. Phipps Racetrack in St Thomas, “you never know what will happen…” he said.

He related that the atmosphere ahead of the race was one of excitement and felt that all the horses looked good for the starting line.

It was a sentiment shared by Mr Wystan Benjamin, President of the St Thomas/St John Horse Owners' Association. “Everybody is excited about [today’s] races… some of the vendors already started coming in to set up so we’re all set right now,” he said yesterday.

Benjamin, in an exclusive interview with Virgin Islands News Online, said the protocol was followed and no new entries were allowed after the postponement of the races last Sunday and the card remained the same as before.

“We at the Association don’t like to make projections but we hope to have a good day. From the activity that we’re seeing and the people that have already travelled… that does give an idea of the interest that the public has for this particular race,” the President related.

Meanwhile, President of the VI Horse Owners’ Association, Karen Smith-Aaron agreed there were no clear winners from all appearances but shared that she also felt the horses seemed fine ahead of the races.

Most number of debuts

Benjamin also disclosed that there were almost 13 horses on show for their first race and this was the first instance that so many horses would debut together for the first time.

“A lot of people are saying that it’s going to be a very big day because of just how many horses are debuting,” Benjamin shared.

He felt the slew of debuts was an indication of the interest and tremendous amount of activity with new horses that had been taking place over recent months.

Asked what he felt this said about the sport in the region, Benjamin said he noticed that many of the older folks that had been involved in horseracing from his childhood years were re-kindling their interest.

“That’s a good sign and it’s a good thing to see,” he stated.

“It’s very difficult to pick a clear cut winner so that makes it that much more exciting and gives people more reason to come out and watch [the races],” Benjamin remarked.

See race card below:

 

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