One of the biggest sporting events in Barbados, the Sandy Lane Barbados Gold Cup will take place this Saturday (March 8, 2014) at the Historic Garrison Savannah and will attract many visitors from all over the world. Since its inception in 1982, the Barbados Gold Cup aimed to be the most prestigious horse race in the Caribbean and today it boasts such an honorable title. Contested over a turf course at a distance of 1,800 metres, this race is open to horses, age three or older.
Having been sponsored for the last 18 years by the world renowned Five Diamond hotel, Sandy Lane, this endorsement has lead to the event now seeing entries from not only the Caribbean but also from some of the world’s leading investors in the USA and Canada. For instance, this year’s Gold Cup – the 33rd edition – will have some American flavour as racing tycoons Kenneth L. and Sarah Ramsey, winners of the 2004 Eclipse Award for outstanding owners, are among three owners who will compete. Major Marvel will represent the United States, while the other two are Trinidad and Tobago’s Nominee, owned by Antonio Navarro, and local horse Daga from Blue Diamond Racing. Those three horses are among ten others that were nominated at the offices of the Barbados Turf Club.
It would be fair to conclude that the magnificent Gold Cup which is won outright by the winning owner is amongst the most sought after trophies in the world. On February 14, 2014, Minister of Sport Stephen Lashley and the general manager of Sandy Lane Barbados, Randall Wilkie, met the British Airways crew at the Grantley Adams International Airport to receive this year’s Gold Cup, the symbol of local horse racing prestige.
And even though the Gold Cup is an international event and streamed to a worldwide audience, its Barbadian flair remains with many local jockeys, trainers, owners and horses crossing the winning line over its 25 year history. While on the big race day, patrons are treated to pomp and ceremony in a carnival-like atmosphere with a series of activities including live music, a Gold Cup Parade and of course, scrumptious food.
So without further ado, see you at the races!