Mrs. Gay Smith’s PORTFOLIO COMPANY (Kitten’s Joy – Iteration by Wild Again) and jockey Antonio Bishop made an early move to the lead into the stretch run of the Garrison Savannah and held on to win the 41st Sandy Lane Barbados Gold Cup (G1) on March 2 over Ken Ramsey’s Cash Equity (Fr). The five-year-old bay gelding had shipped in from Gulfstream Park where he was trained by Chad Brown. Smith had recently purchased the horse who had won four of his 15 previous races but was fifth in his lone race, Jan. 27, since last summer.

Portfolio Company was the less-fancied of the two Smith entrants in the Gold Cup as stablemate Jerry the Nipper was odds-on with Patrick Husbands riding.  Trained by Todd Pletcher at Gulfstream, Jerry the Nipper had been a close third in the Fort Lauderdale Stakes (G2) and recently ninth in the Grade 1 Pegasus World Cup Turf.

The Smith pair were up against two from Ken Ramsey’s stable trained by Saffie Joseph Jr.: Cash Equity (Fr) a grade 2-placed turf horse and winner Spy Novel. Ramsey, incidentally, was also the breeder of two Gold Cup starters, Portfolio Company and Pat’ssewingmachine, the Woodbine invader who won the Group 1 Coolmore Stakes in his Barbados debut.

A field of eight contested the ‘about’ 1 1/8 mile grass contest which was worth $214,000 (BAR).

Spy Novel zipped to the lead early in the race from his rail post but came off the rail around the first bend as Renaisance Frolic moved to the rail to press the leader. Meanwhile, Bishop had Portfolio Company chasing in third while Jerry the Nipper seemed to have trouble cornering early.

Heading up the slight hill to the turn for home, four horses were lined up with Spy Novel, Renaisance Frolic, Portfolio Company and Pat’ssewingmachine all in contention, Jerry the Nipper was trying to advance along the inside from the back of the field. Into the stretch run, Portfolio Company had shaken clear of Spy Novel but the grey Cash Equity under Rasheed Hughes was making a rally. Cash Equity only got to the flank of Portfolio Company, however, as the pair flashed under the wire. Pat’ssewingmachine was back in third with Jerry the Nipper fourth. The time was a solid 1:49 3/5.

Gay Smith led a parade of hot pink into the winner’s circle as the owner and her family all wore the same bright colours as her silks. Smith’s husband Derrick Smith, who races horses with Michael Tabor and Mrs. John Magnier, was also helping lead in the victorious horse along with their Barbados trainer Edward Walcott Jr. The Smiths own Springhead Farm in Barbados and they had won three previous Gold Cups, the last one in 2011 with Zoom, who won through disqualification.

For Bishop, who rode Zoom, this was his first Gold Cup win by crossing the finish line in front. “I went into the race with confidence,” said Bishop to reporters after the race. “Even if [Cash Equity] had got right up to me, he still would have had to pass me.”

Portfolio Company was a $120,000 Fasig-Tipton yearling in 2020 and he raced for Klaravich Stable and Chad Brown for his first 14 races. As a two-year-old, the bay won his debut and was second in the With Anticipation Stakes (G3) and Pilgrim Stakes (G2). He won three allowance races before he went onto the sidelines last August.

Portfolio Company is from the aged mare Iteration who produced Marine Stakes winner Queen’splatekitten, W.L. McKnight Stakes winner Charming Kitten and one other winner in addition to Portfolio Company.

Both Portfolio Company and Jerry the Nipper will return to the U.S. on March 5 before future plans are decided.