by Thomas Hedlund
For the moment, at least, the king among the five-year-olds in France is called Carat Williams thanks to a victory Saturday in the Criterium des 5 ans at Vincennes in Paris.
Sébastien Guarato, the man behind the well known Bold Eagle, is Carat Williams’ trainer and he can say that he has the best horse in the ”C-crop” in his home country.
The Criterium des 5 ans is one of the biggest races for the five-year-olds in France and the distance of 3,000 meters (approximately 1.9 miles) on the big track is demanding.
Carat Williams (Prodigious) and his driver David Thomain got away fast and were in front early in the race. After a few lead changes, where one of the toughest opponents Charly du Noyer chased the front position, Carat Williams could trot in a suitable pace during the first 2,500 meters. In the last turn there were just two horses poised to win. Carat Williams and Charly du Noyer were better than their antagonists, but the chasing Charly du Noyer was never any threat for the leader.
Carat Williams won in an approximate mile time of 1:57.2 and earned $128,000 for his efforts.
Bold Eagle (Ready Cash) won the race in 2016 and trainer Guarato has recorded three victories in the race since 2014.
Timoko heads for retirement
It is likely that French champion Timoko has raced for the final time in his extraordinary career.
The two time Elitloppet winner made his last start in Cagnes-sur-Mer at the end of August and won in 1:51.1 with driver Björn Goop in the sulky.
The 10-year-old son of Imoko was exercised and trained by Dutch trainer Richard Westerink who also drove the talented horse the first years on the tracks.
Timoko showed at an early stage that he was something different from other horses. He made five appearances as a two-year-old, won one race and developed to become the star of the French ”T-crop” born 2007.
In January of this year, he passed Ready Cash in the hunt of becoming the richest trotter ever in French harness racing history and the fact that Timoko fought hard with Ready Cash in the early years and Ready Cash’s son Bold Eagle in the end describes much of Timoko’s greatness.
Richard Westerink and his Timoko have conquered Europe during a long period, but now it seems like the fairytale has come to an end.
In an interview with newspaper Le Parisien, Westerink said that Timoko’s legs and joints are worn and there will not be a start in Belgium, as planned, this weekend.
The fans all over the world thank Timoko for his excellence on the track.
Timoko’s Career Stats
Age | Starts | Result | Money in dollars
2 | 5 | 1-0-0 | $18,417
3 | 14 | 6-3-1 | $578,940
4 | 7 | 6-1-0 | $704,025
5 | 11 | 0-1-3 | $168,253
6 | 17 | 6-3-3 | $1,025,155
7 | 14 | 5-1-0 | $862,520
8 | 10 | 2-1-2 | $765,831
9 | 12 | 5-2-3 | $951,895
10 | 11 | 5-3-1 | $874,100
Total: 101 36-15-13
$58,902 dollars per start
Exchange rate as of Sept. 1.