30-1 shot Essential Quality turns Winston "Fanna" Griffiths Classic into procession at Caymanas Park

By September 02, 2023
Raddesh Roman stands tall aboard Essential Quality. Raddesh Roman stands tall aboard Essential Quality. contributed

Outsider Essential Quality burst the bubbles of her more favoured rivals, as she turned the third running of the Winston “Fanna” Griffiths Classic into a procession at Caymanas Park on Saturday.

Another levelheaded ride by jockey Raddesh Roman saw the Oral Hayden-owned and trained chestnut filly, proving the class of the three-year-old Graded Stakes contest in a gate-to-wire performance over 9-1/2 furlongs (1,900m) at long odds of 30-1.

With not much pace present in the race, the indication was that Fitzroy Glispie’s overwhelming 4-5 favourite Money Miser (Shamaree Muir) or stablemate Princess Sharon (Paul Francis) would have dictated terms on the headline, but the connections of Essential Quality had other ideas.

From the one draw in the nine-horse field, the Sensational Slam-Texas Missy progeny, was sent straight to the lead by Roman, with Princess Sharon and Burlap (Javaniel Patterson) in tow, as the flashed past the clubhouse turn and hit the backstretch.

At that point Money Miser, though more than five lengths behind, seemed fairly comfortable and poised to make a late strike when the leaders falter.

But that was not to be as Roman and Essential Quality quickened past the five-furlong mark and later opened up a gap on Burlap, who tried but failed to apply pressure on the leader leaving the half-mile.

From there, it was Essential Quality against the clock as the filly barely look winded when she straightened in the homestretch and even found when asked by Roman, who later eased up and stood tall in the saddle for the rest of the way.

She completed the distance in 2:03.0, after splits of 25.1, 49.4, 1:14.2 and 1:40.1.

Princess Sharon stayed on for second nine lengths behind, while Richie Rich (Reyan Lewis) and Money Miser (Shamaree Muir), both inevitably hit top stride but were a long way off the winner in third and fourth respectively.

The Ham Stables-bred Essential Quality in landing the lion’s share of the $3.75 million purse, registered her third career win in eight starts.

Meanwhile, trainer Peter-John Parsard and jockeys Tevin Foster, Phillip Parchment, and Reyan Lewis each had two winners on the 10-race card.

Parsard saddled Sunshine Cat (Oneil Mullings) in the seventh race and Rojorn Di Pilot (Omar Walker) in the 10th event.

Foster’s winners were the Michael Marlowe-conditioned Jack of Spades in the second race and Anthony Nunes’s Captain Calico in the fifth. Parchment won aboard Steven Todd’s Magical Mood in the third race and Traditional Boy for trainer Gordon Lewis in the sixth.

Lewis won the fourth race aboard Sensational Satin for trainer Byron Davis, and the eighth with Jason DaCosta’s Lion of Ekati.

Sherdon Cowan

Sherdon Cowan is a five-time award-winning journalist with 10 years' experience covering sports.

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