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Secret Romeo most impressive in victory

By Silver Hawk | 17 Aug 2003 | PUNE

Secret Romeo (B Prakash up) winner of The F.D.Wadia Trophy (Grade II) being led in by trainer Dallas Todywalla

Dallas Todywalla trained Secret Romeo made light of the heavy impost and swamped the opposition in the Gr 2 F D Wadia Trophy in tremendous fashion on Sunday. What was most impressive about the victory of the son of Warrshan was the fact that he was not pulling up soon after crossing the winning post and jockey Prakash had to go with him for a quite a distance before he brought the favourite to a halt. There is no doubt that if Secret Romeo trains on and does not suffer from physical infirmities, he would be the one everyone has to beat in the Indian 2000 Guineas. Judging by his style of running and the way he settled and did not tear away to the front, the Pune Derby too could be within his reach should the connections target him for that race. Secret Romeo is the easily the best three-year old in training in Pune and great things are expected of him. 
There were one to two skeptics who thought that Secret Romeo may not be up to conceding weight all around though there was no doubting his class. Secret Romeo quickly put away any such notions by a stunning display of his potential. Tracking the front-running Rave into the straight, Secret Romeo left his immediate pursuer way behind and went away for an effortless win by a widening margin of over six lengths in an excellent timing of one minute 25.73. Rave hung on to the second position while Rahil who was expected to improve on his previous effort, was a tame third. Winner of the Gr 1 Poonawalla Breeders’ Multi-Million, Secret Romeo’s progress is of more than ordinary interest though he would be missing the services of his trainer for a month as Todywalla is under suspension due to breach of medication rules.
Trainer Imtiaz Sait is on a roll. After saddling four winners on Friday, Imtiaz added one more on Sunday when the unlucky Infinite made amends for her last start failure as a favourite. The five-year old mare Infinite who took a flying jump and was in danger of going into the orbit along with the jockey (!) on the last occasion, was well behaved this time and jockey Rajendra had no difficulty in steering the well bred mare to a facile win. In the form that she is in, the late maturing mare can repeat. Rajendra was successful on another failed favourite Zestful who had failed to display his true potential under Bajrang Singh. The got-abroad gelding Zestful squeezed his way along a narrow passage on the rails and quickened well to stave off the challenge of Castle Beauty who picked up momentum rather too late in the day. Inner Secret was the firm favourite but the son of Inner City would be better off over longer trips. Pegasus had a good forward run when finishing third. 
Shroff was in his elements driving home Silver Blue to a narrow win in a three horse finish. Favourite Auchinblae appeared to have stolen the race when he opened up a good lead inside the final furlong but Silver Blue and Sasha swooped on the front-runner with strong runs. Auchinblae buckled under pressure and Silver Blue managed to keep his neck ahead of Sasha thanks to the driving finish of the champion jockey. In a race, which posed tremendous problems for the race goer to narrow down his selection, Extraordinary lived up to his name in the hands of apprentice Mahesh to record a runaway win. Last start winner Speedster, despite the disadvantage of a wide outside draw, managed to finish second while the fancied Enchante was not concerned at the finish. In the day’s other action, I’Am Sensational won as a well backed horse from a late-finishing Note Bene while apprentice Sunil graduated as a full jockey, steering Secret Miracle to victory. Milestone profited from jockey Dharmender’s inability to retain the winning advantage on Eternal Fight.