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Horse Racing, In-Nazzjon, Malta, Times of Malta, Trot

One Photo impresses in class Gold final

Nico Oland driven by Julian Farrugia winning the first class Premier semi final (Photo In-Nazzjon - Media.Link Communications)

Nico Oland driven by Julian Farrugia winning the first class Premier semi final (Photo In-Nazzjon – Media.Link Communications)

Seven year old One Photo, won Sunday’s major event, the Johnnie Walker Cup final for class Gold trotters on a short distance of 2140m. This final formed part of the 44th meeting of the year made up of nine races and which also included the two President’s Cup Championship semifinals also on the same distance and a normal flat race on a long distance of 1750m.

Nine horses lined up for the class Gold final. As expected, it was favourite Big Ben (Salvu Cutajar) which made the fastest start and during the first metres opened a small lead from Seul En Tete (Charles Camilleri) and Ronson Cloc (Carmelo Farrugia). However with 200m to go, Big Ben started to slow down and midway through the final straight was overtaken by Italian One Photo (Charles Debono) which dashed strongly from the outside in the final straight. Ourasi Diams (Emmanuel Fenech) and Pacific Joy (Anthony Bartolo) finished respectively in third and fourth place. For One Photo this was its first win in Malta.

At the end of this final, Mr Alfred Braddick, on behalf of the sponsors presented the Johnnie Walker Cup to Messrs Etienne Grima and Charles Debono, owner and driver respectively of the winning horse.

From the two class Premier semifinals, ten horses qualified for the final stage. Nico Oland (Julian Farrugia) was unchallenged during the 2140m distance of the first semifinal. This Danish ten year old gained its fourth win in a row by a half length from Ripsos De Fa (Ivan Bilocca) and Vasterbo Paradise (Claudio Refalo). Quo Williams (Noel Baldacchino) and Rainbow Dancer (Michael Ellul) also made it to the final stage.

Gozitan driver Julian Farrugia also managed to triumph in the second semifinal from the same Championship. Driving French trotter Ohime Mag, Farrugia took the lead when the front horses turned for their final straight. Ohime Mag grabbed its second win of the year easily by three lenghts from Rio De Lou, which was driven by French professional driver Jean Philippe Bazire and Orcas Bac (Rodney Gatt). Quillian Joyeux (Andrew Farrugia) and Zalgado Transs R (Nicholas Bonello) followed home in that order.

In the only flat race on the card, it was British newcomer Zinnobar (Michael Sultana) which led all the way and notched to its first win in Malta from Pearl Storm (Oliver Briffa) and Timolin (Eric Zammit). Five horses took part in this last race of the programme. Another meeting at the Marsa Racetrack will be held on Friday. The first race should start at 7pm.

Sunday’s winners.

Race 1. Class Copper. Dist – 3140m. 1. Phenix d’Or (Charles Mifsud) – 1.22.3”

Race 2. Class Bronze. Dist – 3140m. 1. Ogor (Anton Cassar) – 1.18.9”

Race 3. Class Bronze. Dist – 3140m. 1. Britt Buitenzorg (Rodney Gatt) – 1.19.3”

Race 4. President’s Cup Semi Final. Class Premier. Dist – 2140m. 1. Nico Oland (Julian Farrugia) – 1.14.9”

Race 5. Class Silver. Dist – 3140m. 1. Rubis d’Olivier (Noel Baldacchino) – 1.18”

Race 6. President’s Cup Semi Final. Class Premier. Dist – 2140m. 1. Ohime Mag (Julian Farrugia) – 1.15.1”

Race 7. Johnnie Walker Cup Final. Class Gold. Dist – 2140m. 1. One Photo (Charles Debono) – 1.15.1”

Race 8. Class Silver. Dist – 3140m. 1. Salvador Vrie (Jeffrey Pace) – 1.19”

Race 9. Class Flat. Dist – 1750m. 1. Zinnobar (Michael Sultana) – 1.46.4”

L-ewwel rebha ghal One Photo fil-finali Gold – Julian Farrugia, protagonist fis-semi finali Premier

Misjuq minn Charles Debono, it-Taljan One Photo rebah it-tigrija ewlenija li saret il-bierah wara nofsinhar fil-korsa tal-Marsa. Din kienet il-finali tat-Tazza Johnnie Walker ghal zwiemel tal-klassi Gold fuq distanza qasira ta’ 2140m. Din il-finali kienet taghmel parti mill-44 programm tas-sena fuq disgha tigrijiet, b’wahda minnhom tkun miftuha ghal zwiemel tal-galopp. Il-programm inkluda wkoll zewg semi finali mit-Tazza tal-President ghal zwiemel tal-aqwa klassi Premier ukoll fuq l-istess distanza.

Fil-finali Gold hadu sehem b’kollox disa’ zwiemel. Kif mistenni, l-Isvediz Big Ben (Salvu Cutajar) kien l-aktar ziemel veloci wara li nghata l-bidu ufficjali tat-tigrija. Fl-ewwel battuti, dan irnexxilu jiftah vantagg zghir minn Seul En Tete (Charles Camilleri) u Ronson Cloc (Carmelo Farrugia). Il-finali baqghet izzomm l-istess andament sa madwar 300m mit-tmiem. Kien f’dak il-mument li Big Ben kellu jhabbat wiccu mal-pressjoni ta’ diversi finalisti, fosthom tar-rebbieh One Photo li f’idejn Charles Debono qabzu fid-dritta finali. Ourasi Diams (Emmanuel Fenech) u Pacific Joy (Anthony Bartolo) dahlu fit-tielet u r-raba’ post rispettivament.

Fi tmiem il-finali, is-Sur Alfred Braddick, f’isem l-isponsors, ipprezenta t-Tazza Johnnie Walker lil Etienne Grima u Charles Debono is-sid u s-sewwieq rispettivament taz-ziemel rebbieh.

Miz-zewg semi finali Premier ghaxar zwiemel ghaddew ghall-finali. Fl-ewwel wahda, id-Daniz Nico Oland ma naqasx milli jiehu r-raba’ rebha konsekuttiva tieghu meta misjuq mill-Ghawdxi Julian Farrugia. Dan id-Daniz kien il-hin kollu quddiem u qasam il-linja finali l-ewwel b’vantagg ta’ nofs tul quddiem Ripsos De Fa (Ivan Bilocca) u Vasterbo Paradise (Claudio Refalo). Quo Williams (Noel Baldacchino) u Rainbow Dancer (Michael Ellul) ikkwalifikaw ukoll ghall-ahhar fazi.

Is-sewwieq Ghawdxi Julian Farrugia rega kien il-protagonist ewlieni fit-tieni semi finali mill-istess kompetizzjoni. Din id-darba permezz tal-Franciz Ohime Mag. Farrugia pogga lil dan iz-ziemel quddiem hekk kif is-semifinalisti kollha dehru biex jaffrontaw id-dritta finali. B’hekk Ohime Mag akkwista t-tieni success stagonali facilment b’zewg tulijiet minn Rio De Lou, li kien misjuq mill-professjonali Franciz Jean Philippe Bazire. Orcas Bac (Rodney Gatt), Quillian Joyeux (Andrew Farrugia) u Zalgado Transs R (Nicholas Bonello) kellhom ukoll wirja tajba.

Fl-uniku tigrija tal-galopp grew biss hames zwiemel. Din intrebhet mid-debuttanta Ingliza Zinnobar ta’ Michael Sultana warali ddominat tul id-distanza. Saru wkoll zewg tigrijiet tal-ponijiet shetland misjuqa minn tfal fuq distanza ta’ 640m. Dawn intrebhu minn Daisy ta’ Cherise Farrugia u She Is A Lady ta’ Darnell Colombo.

Ir-rizultati kollha.

I Tigrija. Klassi Copper. Dist – 3140m. 1. Phenix d’Or (C. Mifsud) Hin – 4.18.3” (1.22.3”) 2. Volcanic Yamm (C. Gauci) 3. Nolan Streamline (A. Mifsud) 4. Darco As (F. Tanti)

II Tigrija. Klassi Bronze. Dist – 3140m. 1. Ogor (A. Cassar) Hin – 4.07.9” (1.18.9”) 2. Polytain (N Baldacchino) 3. L’Ideal De Fersan (I. Galea) 4. Energy Launcher (M. Mifsud)

III Tigrija. Klassi Bronze. Dist – 3140m. 1. Britt Buitenzorg (R. Gatt) Hin – 4.08.9” (1.19.3”) 2. Sibenik (R. Magro) 3. Tilt De La Loge (A. Magro) 4. Record Du Stade (C. Camilleri)

IV Tigrija. Semi Finali Tazza tal-President. Klassi Premier. Dist – 2140m. 1. Nico Oland (J. Farrugia) Hin – 2.40.3” (1.14.9”) 2. Ripsos De Fa (I. Bilocca) 3. Vasterbo Paradise (C. Refalo) 4. Quo Williams (N. Baldacchino) 5. Rainbow Dancer (M. Ellul)

V Tigrija. Klassi Silver. Dist – 3140m. 1. Rubis d’Olivier (N. Baldacchino) Hin – 4.05” (1.18”) 2. Indeed Southwind (K. Sciberras) 3. Rumeur (R. Gatt) 4. All American Class (D. Ellul)

VI Tigrija. Semi Finali Tazza tal-President. Klassi Premier. Dist – 2140m. 1. Ohime Mag (J. Farrugia) Hin – 2.40.7” (1.15.1”) 2. Rio De Lou (J.Ph Bazire – Fra) 3. Orcas Bac (R. Gatt) 4. Quillian Joyeux (A. Farrugia) 5. Zalgado Transs R (N. Bonello)

VII Tigrija. Finali Tazza Johnnie Walker. Klassi Gold. Dist – 2140m. 1. One Photo (Ch. Debono) Hin – 2.40.8” (1.15.1”) 2. Big Ben (S. Cutajar) 3. Ourasi Diams (E. Fenech) 4. Pacific Joy (A. Bartolo)

VIII Tigrija. Klassi Silver. Dist – 3140m. 1. Salvador Vrie (J. Pace) Hin – 4.08” (1.19”) 2. Cross Country F.C. (J. Vella) 3. Simb Justintime (M. Debono) 4. Nisio MRS (J. Borg)

IX Tigrija. Klassi Galopp. Dist – 1750m. 1. Zinnobar (M. Sultana) Hin – (1.46.4”) 2. Pearl Storm (O. Briffa) 3. Timolin (E. Zammit)

“Success li se jibqa f’qalbi” – Charles Debono, sewwieq One Photo

Fi tmiem il-finali Gold hadt ukoll kumment minghand is-sewwieq rebbieh Charles Debono li deher vizibilment emozzjonat. “Kienet finali difficli ghalkemm kont naf li One Photo hu ziemel ta’ potenzjal. Ghal hafna hin kont f’nofs il-qatgha taz-zwiemel, ma ridtx nghaggel u fid-dritta finali iz-ziemel tani sprint tajjeb. Nirringrazzja wkoll lil Etienne Grima tal-fiducja li wera lejja,” tenna Charles Debono.

About Kenneth Vella

A horse racing enthusiast and journalist. He started his career in 1992 and today is the main correspondent on horse racing for In-Nazzjon, Il-Mument and the Times of Malta. He also writes on a number of international magazines and produces TV programmes for E22 and TVM.Kenneth is the proud winner of two consecutive awards of the Malta Broadcasting Awards for the best sport programmes with documentaries.

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