HEAVILY FAVORED BAST PREVAILS BY A HEAD OVER COMICAL TO WIN GRADE I, $300,000 CHANDELIER STAKES; VELAZQUEZ & BAFFERT TEAM FOR 1 1/16 MILES WIN IN 1:46.10 RACE IS A BREEDERS’ CUP ‘WIN & YOU’RE IN’ CHALLENGE RACE QUALIFIER ARCADIA, Calif. (Sept. 27, 2019)–Racing as a team from the quarter pole home, heavily favored Bast, who was ridden by John Velazquez, inched clear late to prevail by a head over K P Dreamin and Abel Cedillo in Friday’s Grade I, $300,000 Chandelier Stakes at Santa Anita. Trained by Bob Baffert, Bast got a mile and one sixteenth in 1:46.10.A Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In” Challenge Race qualifier, Bast has a fees-paid berth into the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies, to be run on Nov. 1 at Santa Anita.In winning, Velazquez registered his 661st graded stakes victory, breaking a tie with fellow Hall of Famer Jerry Bailey, making him North America’s all-time leading graded stakes winning jockey.Attentive to the early pace set by Been Studying Her, Bast was three-deep to the immediate outside of Comical around the far turn and prevailed in a thriller.Off at 1-5 in a field of six juvenile fillies, Bast past paid $2.40, $2.10 and $2.10.Owned by Baoma Corp, Bast, Kentucky-bred filly by Uncle Mo, out of the Indian Charlie mare Laffina, came off a rousing 8 ¾ length win in the Grade I Del Mar Debutante and now has two wins from three starts.In her first try around two turns, she picked up $180,000 for the win, increasing her earnings to $372,200.Third, beaten 9 ¼ lengths by Bast at Del Mar, Comical, who was ridden for the first time by Cedillo, was off at 11-1 and paid $5.00 and $2.80 while finishing three lengths in front of K P Dreamin.Ridden by Ruben Fuentes, K P Dreamin was off at 17-1 and paid $4.00 to show.Leucothea, a 24-1 longshot ridden by Norberto Arroyo, Jr., broke from the outside and unseated Arroyo coming out of the gate.Fractions on the race were 24.92, 49.54, 1:13.98 and 1:39.29.
BIL Director-General (2nd from left) with the Institute’s first graduating class following the ceremony on, Friday, October 11, 2019.The Banking Institute of Liberia (BIL) has graduated its first batch of students who were trained in regulatory framework and compliance, internal audit, system and controls and corporate risk management, among others.BIL was established in 2014 by the Liberia Bankers Association and the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL), to provide cutting edge training and capacity building support to stakeholders in the banking and financial sector. The 130 pioneer candidates came from nine commercial banks, which included the CBL and one-micro-finance institution.In a remark, CBL Director of Financial Markets, Armazo Bawn, who served as the program’s guest speaker, told the graduates to use the skills acquired during training to become visionaries and solve the numerous challenges facing the banking sector.Mr. Bawn added that although the country is experiencing a severe economic crisis, the problems can be resolved if bankers become innovative.“As we journey through life, there are many challenges that we must overcome; you either overcome them or they will overcome you. Remember, when life chokes you, choke it back, it would soon find out that no one messes with you. Everyone complains about the hard times; certainly, we can learn something from the women’s battle cry, ‘women ooh women, women; don’t sit there, do something!’” Mr. Bawn told the graduates.“We are faced with the difficulties of everyday life; could this be an opportunity to do something new, whatever the economic conditions may be? We are not the first to experience such economic hardship. Let me say this to you, amid these difficulties, you have the power to control destiny with your mind; whatever you desire, so shall it be if you work towards it. You hold the key in the palm of your hand, use it,” Mr. Bawn said.Armazo Bawn, CBL Director of Financial Market, who served as Banking Institute of Liberia’s first convocation guest speaker.Mr Bawn further admonished the graduates that the greatest tragedy that will befall them is to walk out of BIL and lack vision.“Without a vision, you are just playing games with your life. You are a product of your choices. You will become the sum of the little choices in life. Not to decide is to decide not to,” he said.Also speaking at BIL’s graduation program was BIL Director-General, Assistant Professor Richard S. Panton, who said the journey to the institution’s first graduation has not been an easy task, but with courage and determination, they were able to make the difference.“Human capital development is essential for national growth and development in any society. This is because when there is highly skilled and trained manpower, the challenges facing the society can easily be overcome. Trained and highly skilled staffs can unravel complex problems in the environment. Additionally, the trained and skilled staff becomes more innovative in finding solutions to organizational problems as well as translating corporate policies into achievable action steps,” Mr. Panton said.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)