In the olden days, they used to send out a horse all over the country, and called him Ashwamedha. In modern times, they call it Mariinsky.
Three-year-old filly Mariinsky, a local heroine whom shrewd horseman Pesi Shroff had immediately packed off to Kolkata after her stylish victory in the grade 2, FD Wadia Trophy at Pune in August, had first raided the Fillies’ Trial in the city of joy in September, then moved to Bangalore to bag the Abaran 1000 Guineas only two weeks ago, and now returned to her home track Mahalaxmi to stamp her unquestionable superiority by decisively winning the Deltin Casino Indian 1000 Guineas (Gr 1), the feature event of the Sunday races.
In the hands of P Trevor who tasted his first ever Indian Classic success, Mariinsky moved up from mid-bunch with giant strides to go clear in the final furlong and it was all over bar the shouting. The 4-to-1 shot who was lesser fancied than only favourite Starry Eyes in the bookmakers’ ring thus reeled off her fourth straight win in a row, each at different centres. “I was in fact waiting for someone to challenge her,” jockey Trevor who partnered her during the entire winning spree, said after the race, “because whenever she is challenged, she renews her energy and stretches away. Even today, she lengthened her stride to sail away from Circle Of Life.”
Trainer Pesi Shroff also trained Circle Of Life (Richard Hughes up), thus grabbing the first two places in the first Classic of the season. Favoruite Starry Eyes, entrusted to Bangalore-based jockey Suraj Narredu who kept her last but one until the turn, only managed to finish third. Dr Vijay Mallya, at whose Kunigal stud farm Mariinsky was bred and who also retains a share in her with first owner Mehernosh H Deboo, put in a special appearance at the Mahalaxmi racecourse.