Wed | Feb 24, 2021

Parsard: Winning any of the Classics would be amazing

Published:Sunday | May 24, 2020 | 12:33 AMLennox Aldred - Sunday Gleaner Writer

IAN PARSARD is just as keen as all the other trainers at Caymanas Park for the racing season to resume as he has his sights firmly set on the Classic races which will be run later than usual this year following the indefinite closure of the racetrack on March 21.

Parsard, who is currently fourth on the trainers’ standing with 12 wins in 40 starts this year, says it would an amazing achievement to win one of the Classics in this curtailed racing season which has been severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Winning any of the classics would be tremendous, that would be the highlight of the season and we wouldn’t have to go any further,” said Parsard.

The trainers have asked for a restart date of June 13 but that is still to be confirmed as the Government continues to battle the deadly coronavirus. Up to yesterday, the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Jamaica stood at 550. Two hundred persons have recovered while there have been nine deaths.

With more than two months of racing lost due to the coronavirus pandemic, Parsard is hoping that the Classic season can at least be spared due to its importance to the racing industry. The 1000 and 2000 Guineas were originally set for April 12 and 13, the Jamaica Derby for June 28 and the Jamaica St Leger for July 26. All will have to be rescheduled.

“The Classic season is the lifeline of the racing industry because it also has an impact on the breeding stock as we go forward in time,” Parsard said.

Parsard currently has 12 horses in training with the remaining 10 having been turned out to farms in a bid to cut costs due to the indefinite suspension of racing.


Two of those horses that Parsard is banking on to bring him glory in the classics are his three-year-old colts MAHOGANY and DOUBLE CROWN. He believes that both have good chances of landing one of the coveted Classics.

“Both DOUBLE CROWN and MAHOGANY have good chances. As three-year-olds, they go through a rapid pace of development and if they train well and improve, I think they will certainly have a say.”

With the coronavirus hampering operations severely with most trainers resorting to mere maintenance work with the horses, Parsad added that the Classics are up for the taking for everyone.

“It’s still a wide-open affair and everybody will have a shot. We don’t know how the horses will react after coming back and who will come back better, some horses who wouldn’t have made it in April could be a fantastic horse in July, so it’s up for the taking,” Parsard said.