THE VERDICT: The 2019 Thornbird Stakes

Lady Blue winning the Thornbird Stakes with Omar Walker in the saddle.
Lady Blue winning the Thornbird Stakes with Omar Walker in the saddle.

KINGSTON, Jamaica – Lady Blue’s two-length victory in the seven-furlong 28th running of the Thornbird Stakes on Saturday last (March 16, 2019) has ignited her connections of the possibility of what is to come in the April 13, 1000 Guineas (fillies only) one-mile Classic event. analyses the outcome of the Thornbird in finishing order.
FIRST: (Lady Blue – Blue Pepsi Lodge – The Vibes Lady) – This was the filly’s sixth run and on three occasions of these six starts, Lady Blue was defeated by Corazon. This time however, with Omar Walker in the saddle, Lady Blue was able to reverse that losing trend against Corazon. Lady Blue went to the front from the off and mixed it up on the lead with Princess Lauren and Corazon before moving away with a staunch effort in the straight to win fairly easily in the end by two lengths. This filly is gaining the reputation of being tough and resilient, she is always ready for the fight which makes up for any natural class that might be lacking. For the 1000 Guineas in April, Lady Blue moves up by three kilogrammes but given her toughness should not find this a problem. The time of 1:26.0 recorded by Lady Blue for seven furlongs was just a fifth slower than the one done by Toona Ciliata (1;25.4) in the Prince Consort two races later.
SECOND: (Princess Ava – Mine Over Matter – Exotic Selection) – This was Princess Ava’s third career start. She was never with the early leaders but raced fairly prominently and made a bold bid a furlong and a half out but could not catch the leader and eventual winner, Lady Blue. Princess Ava is developing nicely and her effort in the Thornbird was reflective of that progress and the longer they go the better it seems for this filly. Come April 13 in the one mile, 1000 Guineas, Princess Ava will have to carry seven kilogrammes more making her task of winning very difficult but then again this is horse racing at the three-year-old level and anything can happen.
THIRD: (Princess Lauren – Soul Warrior – Lipstick Lily) – In her two races before the Thornbird, Princess Lauren had problems at the gates, always jumping behind her rivals. In the Thornbird she was with the leaders from early but had nothing left to really challenge the top two. Princess Lauren is still developing and is going to turn out to be quite a nice earning sort.
FOURTH: (Corazon – Blue Pepsi Lodge – My Heartbeat) – The 4-5 favourite in the Thornbird simply did not fire. Corazon was early with the leaders but never really put in a challenge. Something has obviously gone wrong with this bay filly that has to be sorted out quickly by her connections as the 1000 Guineas is looming.
FIFTH: (Reggae Gone Grammy – Western Classic – Little Thunder) – Did her best and earned for her connections.
SIXTH: (Winx Choice – Forest Danger – Hurricane Michelle) – Did not affect the outcome of this race.
SEVENTH: (Top Shelf – Soul Warrior – First Choice) – Cannot seem to regain the type of form which saw her winning one of the big two-year-old races in September of 2018. Has much more to do.
EIGHTH: (Casual Drink – Casual Trick – Zacapa) – Another clinker by this filly who has promised so much after a smashing debut win in September of last year. There is something amiss with Casual Drink and it is going to take sometime for her trainer to find out exactly what is the matter. Time is not on her side right now.
NINTH: (Princess Annie – Northern Giant – Millennium Princess) – Got a bad start from the number one draw, was hindered thereafter and never recovered.


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