CUBA CUTS DOU­BLE BUT NO GRAND PLANS

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - RACING -

TRAINER John Thompson isn’t about to get car­ried away with Cuba’s form af­ter the sprinter won again yes­ter­day.

Cuba led all the way for his sec­ond straight win in the Sch­weppes Hand­i­cap (1400m) at Royal Rand­wick.

Thompson con­sid­ered Cuba good enough to con­test stakes races early in his ca­reer, al­beit with­out suc­cess, and the trainer will not push the sprinter back to top level just yet.

“Cuba’s go­ing su­per but we will just take him through his grades,’’ Thompson said.

“He’s al­ways shown prom­ise but we de­cided to geld him be­cause he wasn’t show­ing his best on race­day. I think he is learn­ing to be a race­horse now.’’

Cuba ($6 favourite) was well-rated by ap­pren­tice Chris Wil­liams and was never headed, scor­ing by three-quar­ters of a length from Su­per Star Bob ($9) with Ex­cel­sior ($61) nearly two lengths away third.

“Chris has been watch­ing Cuba for a while at track­work and has­sling me to ride him,’’ Thompson said.

“This horse needs a strong rider and Chris does suit him. His (3kg) claim came in handy and he did ride the horse very well. Cuba has a high cruis­ing speed and, com­ing to the turn, when he was still trav­el­ling so well for Chris, I knew he would give a good kick.’’

Chris Wil­liams win­ning on Cuba. Pic­ture: Si­mon Bullard

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