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Updated: 9 hours 49 min ago

Jockeys and Jeans Stallion Season Sale a Success

Mon, 2020-02-17 13:06

Approximately $70,000 was raised by the Jockeys and Jeans Stallion Season Sale for the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund (PDJF), double its 2019 revenues, the organization announced Monday. Over 20 stallion seasons were sold, including a season to Claiborne Farm’s Runhappy (Super Saver), which topped proceedings at $25,000. The season was donated by the stallion’s owner, Jim “Mattress Mack” McIngvale.

Other farms and people that contributed to the successful season sale were:  Airdrie Stud, Adena Springs Farm, Anchor and Hope Farm, Brandywine Farm, Calumet Farm, Castleton Lyons, Darby Dan Farm, Double Diamond Farm, Robert Evans, Hill ‘n’ Dale, Irish Hill & Dutchess View, Lanes End Farm, Oakton Farm, Ocala Stud, Pin Oak Stud, Spendthrift Farm among others.

The all-volunteer Jockeys and Jeans Committee thanks the donors and season buyers on behalf of the 60 or so permanently disabled former jockeys, who each receives $1,000 from the PDJF each month. Since it was founded six years ago by five former jockeys, Jockeys and Jeans has raised $1.5 million for the PDJF.

“In reality I think the community that is horse racing deserves the accolades,” said President Barry Pearl. “Each and every one of the many hundreds of donors has proven that Thoroughbred racing not only loves and appreciates its racehorses, but the sport’s fallen brothers and sisters who can no longer ride them.”

The post Jockeys and Jeans Stallion Season Sale a Success appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

Catalogue Available for Fasig-Tipton Gulfstream Sale

Mon, 2020-02-17 12:28

A total of 182 2-year-olds make up the catalogue for the Fasig-Tipton Gulfstream Sale of Selected 2-Year-Olds in Training slated for Wednesday, Apr. 1. Held in Gulfstream Park’s walking ring, the sale will begin at 1 p.m. EDT. The under tack show is scheduled for 9 a.m. Monday, Mar. 30.

“The Gulfstream Sale annually offers the highest concentration of quality of any North American 2-year-old sale,” said Fasig-Tipton President Boyd Browning.  “This year’s catalogue is no exception, as it is again loaded with sire power, depth of pedigree, and quality individuals.”

Past graduates of the Hallandale showpiece include 2019 GI Santa Anita Oaks heroine Bellafina (Quality Road), GI Humana Distaff scorer Mia Mischief (Into Mischief) and current Triple Crown contenders Independence Hall (Constitution), winner of the GIII Nashua S. and Jerome S.; and Feb. 9 GII San Vicente S. victor Nadal (Blame).

“Performance over Gulfstream’s dirt surface in the sale’s under tack shows has translated to victories in the sport’s most prestigious races,” continued Browning. “Gulfstream provides the opportunity to watch 2-year-olds perform over a big, dirt racetrack–which has proven to be a tremendous advantage for buyers.”

In 2019, 59 2-year-olds grossed $29,115,000 with an average of $493,475 and a median of $375,000. Topping the 2019 sale was a son of Curlin out of Achieving (lot 173), who was knocked down for $3.65 million. He was one of four juveniles to hammer at seven figures.

Print catalogues will be available from the Fasig-Tipton offices beginning in late February, while supplemental entries will also be accepted.

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Taraz Breaks Down, Is Euthanized, at Oaklawn

Mon, 2020-02-17 11:22

Taraz (Into Mischief), a 3-year-old filly who seemed poised to emerge as a major star, was euthanized Monday after suffering an injury during a workout at Oaklawn Park. The news was confirmed by her owner and breeder Juddmonte Farms, which issued a statement shortly after the injury.

“Taraz severely fractured her left front pastern this morning in a workout at Oaklawn Park,” the statement read. “She was transported back to the barn where X-rays were taken and reviewed, with the attending veterinarian consulting Dr. Bob Hunt of Hagyard. Given the extreme nature of the damage to the bone and compromise to the blood supply, it was agreed that repair was impractical. Having consulted between trainer Brad Cox, veterinarians and Juddmonte management it was deemed best to euthanize the filly.”

Though she raced just three times, Taraz was among the most talked about horses in racing. She broke her maiden at Churchill Downs by 7 1/2 lengths, for which she earned the ‘TDN Rising Star‘ designation and then came back with an 11 1/4-length victory in the Lettelier Memorial S. at the Fair Grounds. Cox then sent her to Oaklawn, where she won the Martha Washington S. by 3 3/4 lengths in her first try around two turns.

“I love her,” jockey Florent Geroux said after the Martha Washington. “She ended up good today. I think she’s definitely super talented.”

Cox and Juddmonte were so high on the filly that after the Martha Washington, they announced that she would be nominated to the Triple Crown and that they might pick a race against males for her next start. Ultimately, they chose the Mar. 7 GIII Honeybee S. at Oaklawn against fillies for their horse but kept the GI Kentucky Derby option open.

“We would leave our options open, for sure,” Cox said of the possibility Taraz could still wind up in the Derby. “Anything can happen. I started getting better horses a few years back; you try to keep them nominated as much as you can and leave your options open.”

Cox often referred to the massive size of his filly.

“I don’t have a scale or a measuring stick,” he said. “I’m not sure, but she’s big–a big girl.”

Taraz is out of the winning Silk Route (Empire Maker), while her second dam is the English listed winner and G1 Fillies’ Mile S. bridesmaid Jibe (Danzig). Jibe, in turn, is a daughter of the Broodmare of the Year, Group 3 winner and G1 Epsom Oaks runner-up Slightly Dangerous (Robert). The latter also foaled European highweights Commander in Chief (GB) (Dancing Brave) and Warning (GB) (Known Fact), as well as MGSW & MG1SP Dushyantor (Sadler’s Wells) and GI Flower Bowl Invitational H. heroine Yashmak (Danzig).

Though there is no making up for the loss of such a a talented horse, Cox may still be represented in the GI Kentucky Oaks as he is also the trainer of 2019 Juvenile Filly champion British Idiom (Flashback). She finished second in her 3-year-old debut in Saturday’s GII Rachel Alexandra S. Presented by Fasig-Tipton.

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Mineshaft Winner Silver Dust DQ’ed From Louisiana Victory

Sun, 2020-02-16 18:06

Silver Dust (Tapit), who scored in Saturday’s GIII Mineshaft S. at Fair Grounds, has been disqualified and placed last for his previous victory, in the GIII Louisiana S. Jan. 18, due to a failed drug test, according to a report in the Daily Racing Form. The Bret Calhoun-trained gray tested positive for levamisole, the same drug that got eight Joe Sharp trainees disqualified from wins at the meet earlier this month. Calhoun is married to Sharp’s mother, Sara Escudero, and the two trainers’ barns at Fair Grounds are next to one another, according to the DRF.

In addition, Sharp pupil Blackberry Wine (Oxbow), who finished seventh in the first division of Saturday’s GII Risen Star S. at the New Orleans oval, was disqualified from a victory in his previous race, an allowance/optional claiming event also run on Jan. 18.

Levamisole, which Sharp said earlier was found in an over-the-counter deworming product he purchased, is listed as a Class 2 drug by the Association of Racing Commissioners International.

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Speightstown Colt the Latest ‘TDN Rising Star’ for the Baffert Barn

Sun, 2020-02-16 17:18

Charlatan (Speightstown) would’ve likely gone favored in most Santa Anita maiden special weights if not for the presence Sunday of Lane Way (Into Mischief)–who was third behind Charlatan’s ‘TDN Rising Star’ and GII San Vicente S.-winning stablemate Nadal (Blame) here last month–and he made 6-5 look like a particular bargain after zipping away in dominant fashion to get the ‘Rising Star’ nod himself. Seizing the lead without having to work particularly hard for it, the chestnut bowled along through splits of :21.89 and :44.72. He looked like a lock entering the stretch with a clear advantage, and Drayden Van Dyke didn’t have to ask for anything from there as he glided to the wire 5 3/4 lengths in front. Shooters Shoot (Competitive Edge) held second over odds-on chalk Lane Way.

“I gigged him just a little after the break, just to get him into the race,” said Van Dyke. “I really didn’t know that much about him. You could see he had a couple bullet works from the gate and that he’d been training well. He blew by those horses so easy and as you could see, he galloped out big.”

The winner was the second most expensive Speightstown yearling to sell in 2018 after bringing $700,000 from his formidable ownership group at Keeneland September. His dam annexed the 2013 GII La Troienne S. for Todd Pletcher and Padua Stables, and finished second in a trio of Grade I events behind Tiz Miz Sue (Tiznow), Royal Delta (Empire Maker) and Beholder (Henny Hughes) before checking in third behind Beholder and Close Hatches (First Defence) in the 2013 GI Breeders’ Cup Distaff. She sold days later for $1.2 million at Fasig-Tipton November to Stonestreet.

Authenticity’s first foal was Hanalei Moon (Malibu Moon), SW, $295,090. Charlatan was her second foal. Her now 2-year-old colt Bennyfromthebronx (Tapit) was a $300,000 KEESEP yearling himself. Authenticity produced an Into Mischief filly last May 1 before being bred to Curlin. She is a granddaughter of MGSW and GISP Appealing Missy (Lypheor {GB}).

4th-Santa Anita, $53,900, Msw, 2-16, 3yo, 6f, 1:08.85, ft.
CHARLATAN, c, 3, Speightstown
1st Dam: Authenticity (MGSW & MGISP, $883,362), by Quiet American
2nd Dam: Court of Appeal, by Deputy Minister
3rd Dam: Appealing Missy, by Lypheor (GB)
Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0, $33,000. Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton. Free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree.
O-SF Racing LLC, Starlight Racing, Madaket Stables LLC, Stonestreet Stables LLC, Frederick Hertrich, III, John D. Fielding, & Golconda Stables; B-Stonestreet Thoroughbred Holdings LLC (KY); T-Bob Baffert. *$700,000 Ylg ’18 KEESEP

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Split Divisions, But No Split Decision in Risen Star

Sun, 2020-02-16 16:19

The Week in Review, by T.D. Thornton

When you think of the Fair Grounds and its series of GI Kentucky Derby preps, it’s easy to conjure up images of stamina-centric closers who can stay all day.

The track’s imposing 1,346-foot home stretch–for decades billed as the longest in North America, until the reconfigured Los Alamitos surpassed it by 34 feet in 2014–is the primary reason.

The other, which is new this year, is the elongated change in distance for the three races in the Fair Grounds’ January-March prep series. Most notably, the GII Risen Star S. and GII Louisiana Derby have each been extended by an extra sixteenth of a mile, to nine furlongs and 1 3/16 miles, respectively.

When the overflow Risen Star got split into two divisions for Saturday’s running, it was no surprise that the betting public installed the most accomplished deep closers in each heat as the favorites.

In division one, Silver State (Hard Spun) edged Enforceable (Tapit) by a fractional amount in the wagering to go off as the 3-1 choice. Both horses had run well late over the surface in the GIII Lecomte S. Anneau d’Or (Medaglia d’Oro) was solidly backed at even money in the second division, based on his resolute late runs in California that fell only a head and a neck shy of earning him the 2019 juvenile championship.

The collective pari-mutuel mindset was leaning heavily in the direction that the longer race distance coupled with that taxing Fair Grounds stretch would surely move up those late threats even more.

Those pre-race prognostications involving deep-closing dominance ended up going right out the window when both divisions of the Risen Star were won by forwardly-placed, mid-priced longshots vying for the lead.

The first division came up tougher on paper. Mr. Monomoy (Palace Malice) broke like a pro in the New Orleans twilight and asserted himself on the front end, settling in hand under decent pressure for the backstretch run. When confronted three eighths out, the 7-1 pacemaker authoritatively re-seized the lead, but the colt maintained his composure and didn’t have to be roused with purpose until the field spun into that long stretch with the favorites hot on his heels. Mr. Monomoy not only held them at bay, but stylishly extended away from his pack of pursuers, crossing the wire 2 1/2 lengths in front of Enforceable, with Silver State another half-length back.

In division two, Modernist (Uncle Mo) broke alertly at the rail on a Fair Grounds track consumed by darkness and with its artificial lights now fully blazing. He too displayed composure under sustained intensity, attaining then conceding the lead on three distinct occasions down the backstretch and into the lane while never giving up position near the fence. And like Mr. Monomoy did 35 minutes earlier, Modernist repulsed a trio of late-firing closers (although Anneau d’Or was not one of them; he caved after creating a difficult trip for himself).

So which Risen Star divisional winner ran the better race? The early pace in both heats doesn’t yield tangible clues. The opening quarter miles differed by only .16 of a second, and the halves were run in identical clockings of :48.57. How’s that for divisional parity?

But three eighths from the wire is where the two performances show separation: Mr. Monomoy ran his final three furlongs in :37.58, and he did so while pulling away from onrushing favorites in the stronger division. His final time of 1:50.43 translated to a 92 Beyer Speed Figure.

Modernist required :38.66 to cover his final three-eighths. And he was staving off–not drawing away from–three horses that were not firing as visually impressively as the closers in the first division. His final time of 1:51.28 earned an 84 Beyer.

The distance elongation experiment with the Fair Grounds preps has largely been well received. As winning trainer Bill Mott quipped after Modernist’s victory, “I think it’s worked out well–they had 20 horses that wanted to run.”

It will be interesting to see what tweaks with Derby prep-race distances might be in the near-term future. Competing tracks might make some changes if horsemen indicate longer preps are what they want. And Churchill Downs, Inc. itself is likely to be adding some new wrinkles in 2021, because next year will be the first in which the corporation will control two winter/spring race meets (Fair Grounds and Turfway Park) that host Kentucky Derby preps.

When Churchill operates its first race meet at the refurbished Turfway next year (it acquired the track last autumn but didn’t significantly alter operations for the 2020 meet), expect a version of the GIII Jeff Ruby S. to be more prominently emphasized in the “Road to the Kentucky Derby” points series. That stakes will likely have its own prep, and the corporation will surely dovetail the Turfway and Fair Grounds sophomore stakes so they don’t conflict on the calendar.

Seeing double at Delta

The racing theme in the state of Louisiana last weekend was all about seeing double. The Fair Grounds split its feature stakes in two, while 230 miles west, Delta Downs had twin first-time starters debuting in a $20,000 maiden-claimer for Friday’s opener.

Custom Pete and Halo Carlos are 3-year-old gelded sons of Custom for Carlos who both resulted from the same pregnancy of the mare Hide the Halo.

Coupled in the wagering, Halo Carlos broke running but faded by the turn of the five-furlong sprint. He finished last. Custom Pete lagged at the rear of the field for most of the race, then passed his twin brother late, running next-to-last.

News of the twins caused a mild buzz on social media before their debut, which likely contributed to the entry going off as the 2.6-1 second choice in the betting off of a 5-1 morning line.

Bettors who backed the 8-5 favorite, Jazzy G (Congrats), ended up getting two huge breaks: The first is that Jazzy G likely would have gone off at half of that 8-5 mutuel had not all that casual cash depressed the odds on the twins. The second is that the longest shot on the board–a shifting and drifting 27-1 shot–ended up crossing the finish line first. But because that long shot couldn’t maintain a straight course, Jazzy G got elevated from second to the win via stewards’ disqualification.

Proposed PA purse raid “begging for a lawsuit”

One of the major sticking points in Gov. Tom Wolf’s proposal to help Pennsylvania’s low- and middle-income students by diverting $204 million from the state’s Race Horse Development Trust Fund (RHDTF) revolves around the fact that this isn’t some simple budget tussle about reallocating money from the state’s general fund.

In 2017, Wolf himself signed into law the Race Horse Industry Reform Act, which created a trust for the gaming revenue that funds purses, and it specifically states that money held in trust is “not funds of the Commonwealth” and that “the Commonwealth is not rightfully entitled” to it for other purposes.

So legislators would first have to undo that state statute before Wolf’s budget idea could move forward.

Speaking at a Feb. 13 rally at West Chester University, the largest of Pennsylvania’s 14 state colleges, Wolf acknowledged there is legislative opposition to his plan, but he said it would not affect his commitment to the proposal.

“It’s a hill I’m happy to die on,” the Philadelphia Inquirer quoted the Democrat governor as saying. “My choice would be to support the tens of thousands of students” in the system.

Two days later, the Inquirer itself editorialized in favor of Wolf’s plan to push ahead with his plan to allow the RHDTF to be gutted.

“Those supporting the industry claim that the money supports agricultural jobs which boosts the state economy, and by funding bigger purses, more people will bet. The reality doesn’t back that up,” the Inquirer editorial stated. “With so many critical and human problems this state faces, the unquestioned propping up of an industry that has shown no promise of improving is outrageous.”

But a number of politicians–particularly those whose districts include the state’s Thoroughbred and Standardbred tracks, plus the 15-venue county fair harness circuit–have already spoken out against repurposing the RHDTF.

An op-ed by Republican Senator Dave Arnold on the website of the Pennsylvania Senate Republicans stated that, “While I understand the need to address rising college tuition costs and increasing student loan debt, I cannot support a plan that could essentially eliminate an industry that provides $1.6 billion in economic benefits to this state and is vital to our area.”

Republican Senator Scott Martin told PennLive that based on what he knows about the 2017 law that protects the RHDTF from transfers like the one Wolf is proposing, the governor is “kind of begging for a lawsuit” by attempting to raid it.

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On Aftercare: Turning for Home Hits Its Stride

Sun, 2020-02-16 14:24

Turning for Home, Inc. was created by the Pennsylvania Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association (PTHA) in 2008 as a model program for racehorse retirement at Parx Racing. Parx was the first to implement a mandatory funding plan simultaneously with rules forbidding horse owners and trainers from sending horses to, or allowing horses to end up in slaughterhouse kill pens. The program was a success from inception and it has evolved from there. We caught up with the current program administrator Danielle Montgomery to talk about the program’s solid support, success stories and her concerns for the program, which has placed close to 3,000 horses, if Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf’s proposal to raid the Race Horse Development Trust Fund goes through.

DP: Danielle, how does Turning For Home work?

DM: Horses that have been continuously stabled on the grounds of Parx Racing for 90 days prior to the time of application into Turning For Home, or have raced in the last 30 days with a trainer that is based at Parx for at least six months of the year, are automatically eligible. The owner or trainer brings me the paperwork and we evaluate the horse. We have 19 farms that re-train and adopt out our horses. We pay the farms an average stipend of $1,500 per horse. The farm then sets their own adoption fee.

DP: How is Turning For Home funded?

DM: The funding comes from the Parx horse owners and jockeys, the PTHA, racetrack management, and the PA Horse Breeders Association. Primarily, the funding comes through a $30 per-start fee paid on every start at Parx. Sometimes owner and trainers make additional donations for their horses.

DP: How do you handle horses that are not sound for retraining when they are retired from racing?

DM: We have three veterinarians that review the horse’s condition and prognosis and we have great veterinarians and vet hospitals that are willing to help us with surgery or treatments if the result will be a sound horse. If the horse is going to be in chronic pain with little or no chance of recovery, even after surgery, we euthanize the horse. Luckily, we have some flexibility in our stipends so that we can pay a bigger stipend if a horse needs a longer rehabilitation time. We put down less than 3% of the horses that come through our program.

DP: What is your background with horses and racing?

DM: I started on the racetrack when I was 16 and over time, I had my trainer’s license in five states. I worked for some really successful great trainers. Eventually, my husband I and bought a farm and started a family. I had ridden and showed as a young person so my husband and I always had retired racehorse ‘project’ horses on the farm. Then I went to work as an executive assistant and I learned my office skills. When the position at Turning For Home came up, it was a perfect fit because it combines all of my skills.

DP: To what do you attribute Turning For Home’s success?

DM: There are many reasons. It was started the right way by PTHA Executive Director Michael Ballezzi and the PTHA Board of Directors. The horsemen at Parx totally embraced. They are grateful for the service. They always wanted to do the right thing for their horses. They love their horses. But it used to be hard because they had no resources and it was difficult to keep track of where the horses went and if they were safe. A lot of horses used to end up in the slaughter pipeline. So, now there is no question. The horses go through our program and we keep track of them. Plus, now, more than ever in the past 30 years, there is a demand for Thoroughbreds in showing, eventing and therapy. We have had many horses in the Thoroughbred Makeover. The trainers are always excited to hear how their horses are doing in their second careers.

DP: Do you take PA-breds or Parx horses even if they are no longer racing at Parx?

DM: Well, we try to help all PA-breds and horses that may have had a career at Parx especially if they are in trouble. We have gotten calls about horses in the kill pen or needing rescue somewhere and we take them. Last year brought home Barlovento Tiger (Big Brown) from Puerto Rico when they stopped racing him there. This was through a partnership with Caribbean Thoroughbred Aftercare. His breeders helped as well. We are currently working on getting James Lee (Changeintheweather), another PA-bred who ran at Parx for years, home from Puerto Rico. He’s had 102 starts and has been in Puerto Rico since August 2016.

DP: What about Turning For Home makes you the most proud?

DM: The number of horses that we save every year and the great partnerships that we have with the re-training and adoption farms. Over time, with education and good results, more trainers are sending horses to us sound. We have horses placed all over the country and in every discipline. We work with farms that are already established as Thoroughbred farms so they understand the breed and they do the work out of love for the horses. The horse always comes first. Some of these farms are Thoroughbred breeding farms and they are already are taking back the horses they bred to rehome them. They are willing to take a few of ours to be helpful and to be good partners. I’m so worried that if the industry loses funding, the whole thing will fall apart and we won’t be able to do this important work.

For more information go to https://patha.org/?s=, or contact Danielle Montgomery at turningforhome@patha.org.

Diana Pikulski is a partner at Yepsen & Pikulski and the editor of the Thoroughbred Adoption Network.

 

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Elusive Quality Filly Makes Big Middle Move to Earn Rising Stardom

Sun, 2020-02-16 12:55

Manganaro Bloodstock and David Ingordo’s Remanded (Elusive Quality) entered her unveiling Sunday at Gulfstream with an upbeat worktab at Payson Park, and was given a 4-1 chance for trainer Cherie DeVaux, who had won with five of her first 23 debuters. Out-breaking only 4-5 favorite Union Maiden (Union Rags), the bay sat toward the back of the pack behind a :22.45 opening quarter before launching a sweeping move into the turn that found her three deep and vying for command after a :45.85 half. She went on with it from there, and while she grew a bit leg weary late, Remanded still maintained a 1 1/2-length advantage on second timer Royal Meghan (Uncaptured) at the line while garnering ‘TDN Rising Star’ honors. Union Maiden could only manage fifth after her rough start.

A $75,000 KEESEP yearling, Remanded was bought back for $190,000 at last year’s OBS April sale after a :10 1/5 breeze. Her precocious dam Sleepless Dixie (Dixie Union), who was MSP as a 2-year-old, is out of GSW Dream About (Cherokee Run), making her a half to GSW Deeply Undervalued (Kitten’s Joy) and SW/MGSP Sleepless Knight (War Chant). Remanded is bred on a version of the extremely potent cross that has produced three Grade I winners (Caledonia Road, Klimt and Salty) by Elusive Quality’s son Quality Road out of Dixie Union mares.

A $205,000 yearling, Sleepless Dixie sold to Clarkland Farm for $210,000 at the 2017 Keeneland November sale carrying a colt by Quality Road. She produced a filly by Mastery in 2019 before being bred back to Accelerate.

1st-Gulfstream, $44,400, Msw, 2-16, 3yo, f, 6f, 1:11.27, ft.
REMANDED, f, 3, Elusive Quality
1st Dam: Sleepless Dixie (MSP, $180,445), by Dixie Union
2nd Dam: Dream About, by Cherokee Run
3rd Dam: Social Director, by Deputy Minister
Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0, $25,800. Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton. Free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree.
O-Manganaro Bloodstock & David Ingordo; B-K & G Stables (KY); T-Cherie DeVaux. *$75,000 Ylg ’18 KEESEP; $190,000 RNA 2yo ’19 OBSAPR

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Hard Not to Love Finds No ‘Peers’ in Santa Monica

Sat, 2020-02-15 20:32

‘TDN Rising Star’ Hard Not to Love was last seen blowing away her competition at 11-1 odds in the GI La Brea S. over this same track and trip Dec. 28, but she likely won’t be going off at double digits for awhile, especially after her latest performance. Reined back to last by Mike Smith in a compact field of five, the bay sat perched out wide and within striking distance as the rest of her foes scrambled for position through a :23.04 opening quarter. The favorite began her sweeping move into a :45.81 half, and kicked away under a hands-and-heels ride to win with authority.

“I gotta take my hat off to [trainer] John Shirreffs and everybody, the groom and the gallop girl that gets on her. She is a lot of work and they have done a lot to get her here and it is paying off,” Smith said. “She gets anxious and the fans are starting to know her. They show her a lot of respect and they get quiet for her. She just gets anxiety because she can’t see everything, but she is such a sweetheart. The best part of it all is once we get her in the gate and get her running.”

Smith added, “I told John, that I think she wants two turns I hope I’m right. She is doing so well doing what she is doing and you can’t ask her to do anymore but it’s time to probably go around the second turn.”

A three-length front-running victoress on debut here almost exactly a year ago, Hard Not to Love–who is missing her left eye–doubled up over Lady Ninja (Majesticperfection) in an April optional claimer. The one blemish on her record so far was a third-place run in the May 4 Angels Flight S. after burning herself out early, but she resurfaced in another optional claimer here Oct. 25 and got the job done from off the pace first time under Smith. She and her Hall of Fame pilot further perfected her new late-running style in the La Brea.

“She’s getting better and better,” Shirreffs said. “She’s getting into those repeat performances. The stewards allowed us to break from the post parade when she came out of the tunnel. Her groom, Martin Lopez, walked her around the [clubhouse] turn and she stayed calm. She never breaks, but she reacts very quickly. Mike said he was waiting for her to relax and then he put her into the race. I love Mike, we go back a long way and we think a lot alike. He’s such a horseman, for him, it’s all about the horse. That’s above winning or losing, it’s always about the horse. It looked like this was her best race. We’re thinking about going into the [Mar. 14 GI] Beholder Mile. I think as long as she can [relax], with her style of running, it shouldn’t be a problem.”

Saturday, Santa Anita
SANTA MONICA S.-GII, $200,000, Santa Anita, 2-15, 4yo/up, f/m, 7f, 1:22.19, ft.
1–HARD NOT TO LOVE, 124, f, 4, by Hard Spun
1st Dam: Loving Vindication, by Vindication
2nd Dam: Chimichurri, by Elusive Quality
3rd Dam: Hard Knocker, by Raja Baba
TDN Rising Star ($400,000 Ylg ’17 KEESEP). O-Mercedes
Stables LLC, West Point Thoroughbreds, Scott Dilworth,
Dorothy & David Ingordo & F. Steve Mooney; B-Anderson
Farms Ont. Inc. (ON); T-John A. Shirreffs; J-Mike E. Smith.
$120,000. Lifetime Record: GISW, 6-5-0-1, $408,480. *1/2 to
Solemn Tribute (Medaglia d’Oro), SW & GSP, $181,234;
Wonder Gadot (Medaglia d’Oro), Horse of the Year, Ch. 2yo
Filly & Ch. 3yo Filly-Can, MGSW & MGISP, $1,524,861.
Werk Nick Rating: B.
Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Mother Mother, 120, f, 4, Pioneerof the Nile–Mother, by
Lion Hearted. TDN Rising Star ($450,000 Ylg ’17 KEESEP).
O-Gainesway Stable (Antony Beck), Old Bones Racing Stable,
LLC, Barry Hall, Barry Lipman & Mark Mathiesen; B-T F Van
Meter (KY); T-Bob Baffert. $40,000.
3–Zusha, 120, m, 5, Congrats–Icy Tea, by Storm Cat. ($42,000
RNA Ylg ’16 KEESEP). O-Rafael Steinbruch; B-Clearsky Farms
(KY); T-Gary Mandella. $24,000.
Margins: 3HF, 1HF, 1. Odds: 0.60, 1.50, 28.70.
Also Ran: Lady Ninja, Road Rager. Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.

Pedigree Notes:
Ontario-based breeder David Anderson paid $180,000 for the winner’s dam, who boasted a 104 Beyer Speed Figure top herself, at the 2011 Keeneland January sale. Her first foal was Solemn Tribute (Medaglia d’Oro), a $385,000 KEESEP yearling who would go on to become a stakes winner and graded stakes-placed. Three seasons later came Wonder Gadot (Medaglia d’Oro), who Anderson sold for $80,000 as a KEESEP yearling. She’d eventually be named Canada’s champion 2-year-old filly in 2017, and champion 3-year-old filly and Horse of the Year in 2018 after annexing the Queen’s Plate, before bringing $2 million the 2019 Fasig-Tipton November sale.

Anderson sold Loving Vindication’s unraced Bodemeister 3-year-old for $300,000 at the 2018 Fasig-Tipton October sale, and then bought back the mare for $1.45 million in that same sales ring that November. Loving Vindication, a daughter of GSW Chimichurri (Elusive Quality), produced a Nyquist filly in 2018 and Curlin colt last April. She was bred back to Medaglia d’Oro.

An A.P. Indy half-sister to Loving Vindication produced last year’s GI Beholder Mile S. heroine Secret Spice (Discreet Cat), who would go on to fetch $1.4 million at Fasig November.

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Uncle Mo Colt Upends Second Risen Star Division

Sat, 2020-02-15 19:33

MODERNIST (c, 3, Uncle Mo–Symbolic Gesture, by Bernardini) went from maiden winner to graded winner after attending the pace and reporting home a length clear in the second division of the GII Risen Star S. Saturday at Fair Grounds. He stopped the clock in 1:51.28 after holding off Major Fed (Ghostzapper). Longshot Ny Traffic (Cross Traffic) was third. Fifth in his sprint debut at Belmont in September, the Wygod homebred was a close third going a mile at Aqueduct Dec. 7 and broke through by four lengths over this trip at Aqueduct Jan. 25.
Lifetime Record: 4-2-0-1.
O-Mr & Mrs Martin J Wygod. B-Wygod Family LLC (Ky). T-William I Mott.

Saturday, Fair Grounds
RISEN STAR S. PRESENTED BY LAMARQUE FORD-GII, $400,000, Fair Grounds, 2-15, 3yo, 1 1/8m, 1:51.28, ft.
1–MODERNIST, 122, c, 3, by Uncle Mo
                1st Dam: Symbolic Gesture, by Bernardini
                2nd Dam: Sweet Life, by Kris S.
                3rd Dam: Symbolically, by Flying Paster
   1ST BLACK TYPE WIN, 1ST GRADED STAKES WIN. O-Pam &
Martin Wygod; B-Wygod Family, LLC (KY); T-William I. Mott;
J-Junior Alvarado. $240,000. Lifetime Record: 4-2-0-1,
$288,800. Werk Nick Rating: A+++ *Triple Plus*. Click for the
   eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Major Fed, 122, c, 3, Ghostzapper–Bobby’s Babe, by Smart
Strike. O/B-Lloyd Madison Farms IV, LLC (KY); T-Gregory Foley.
$80,000.
3–Ny Traffic, 122, c, 3, Cross Traffic–Mamie Reilly, by Graeme
Hall. ($27,000 RNA 2yo ’19 EASMAY). O-Fanelli, John, Cash is
King LLC, LC Racing and Braverman, Paul; B-Brian Culnan (NY);
T-Saffie A. Joseph, Jr. $40,000.
Margins: 1, NK, 1 1/4. Odds: 12.80, 9.70, 11.70.
Also Ran: Mailman Money, Mr. Big News, Lynn’s Map, Finnick the Fierce, Excession, Anneau d’Or, Liam’s Lucky Charm, Fame to Famous. Scratched: Truculent. Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.

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Palace Malice’s Mr. Monomoy Takes No Prisoners in First Risen Star Division

Sat, 2020-02-15 18:58

Sent off a generous 7-1, Mr. Monomoy (Palace Malice) secured an easy lead, set incredibly steady fractions up front and pulled away late to easily defeat GIII Lecomte S. hero Enforceable (Tapit) in the first of two divisions of the GII Risen Star S. Saturday afternoon at the Fair Grounds. Silver State (Hard Spun), who completed the exacta behind Enforceable last time, rounded out the trifecta.

Drawn gate nine and looking to improve on his useful third-place effort in the Lecomte, Mr. Monomoy hit the ground running and dropped down onto the fence entering the first turn while chased by impressive last-out allowance winner Blackberry Wine (Oxbow), heavily backed at 4-1. The $60,000 Keeneland November weanling purchase raced with his mouth a bit agape through an opening quarter in a manageable :24.22 and, with no serious pace pressure to be found, got the next two furlongs in :24.35. Blackberry Wine traveled well within himself and may have put his nose in front passing the three-eighths marker, but Mr. Monomoy counterpunched as the six panels went up in 1:12.85–an internal quarter in :24.28. Asked to sprint in upper stretch and feeling a left-handed crack of Florent Geroux’s crop three-sixteenths of a mile from home, Mr. Monomoy widened away entering the final furlong and proved a convincing winner. The winner’s final three-eighths were clocked in a respectable :37.58.

Enforceable, last and inside of Farmington Road (Quality Road) entering the backstretch, improved into about midfield at the half-mile and finished willingly for the place, just touching off Silver State, who raced close up throughout. Farmington Road closed off nicely to be fourth.

“We had a really good start out of the gate,” the winning rider commented. “I was thinking about stalking, but when I saw no one was really going for the lead I took advantage of it and went for it. It worked really nicely for me. It was a good distance and there was no real competition up front. Last time he did have a bad trip, but it was partly the break. He’s still a new horse and learning everything but he showed me a lot today, I’m really happy with him.”

A troubled fourth on his six-furlong debut at Keeneland Oct. 19, Mr. Monomoy earned his ‘TDN Rising Star’ with a 5 1/2-length graduation at Churchill Nov. 16. Runner-up to Lynn’s Map (Liam’s Map) in a local two-turn allowance in the slop Dec. 21, the bay attended the pace in the Lecomte and came home a one-paced third.

Pedigree Notes:

Mr. Monomoy becomes the second graded winner for his second-crop sire, whose son Structor won the GI Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf and could soon embark on a Triple Crown journey of his own in South Florida. Mr. Monomoy and his Eclipse Award-winning half-sister are each out of a half-sister to graded stakes-winning turfer Drum Major (Dynaformer). Drumette, sold for $75,000 carrying Monomoy Girl in utero at Keeneland November in 2014, was knocked down for $1.85 million in foal to Mastery at the 2018 Fasig-Tipton November Sale. Drumette’s now 2-year-old Shackleford colt fetched $230,000 at last year’s Fasig-Tipton October sale and she foaled a filly by Mastery last year before being bred to Tapit.

Saturday, Fair Grounds
RISEN STAR S. PRESENTED BY LAMARQUE FORD-GII, $400,000, Fair Grounds, 2-15, 3yo, 1 1/8m, 1:50.43, ft.
1–MR. MONOMOY, 122, c, 3, by Palace Malice
1st Dam: Drumette, by Henny Hughes
2nd Dam: Endless Parade, by Williamstown
3rd Dam: Mnemosyne, by Saratoga Six
1ST BLACK TYPE WIN, 1ST GRADED STAKES WIN. ($60,000 Wlg ’17 KEENOV; €180,000 2yo ’19 ARQMA). O-Madaket Stables LLC, Michael Dubb and Doheny Racing Stable; B-FPF LLC & Highfield Ranch (KY); T-Brad H. Cox; J-Florent Geroux. $240,000. Lifetime Record: 5-2-1-1, $327,162. *1/2 to Monomoy Girl (Tapizar), Ch. 3yo Filly, MGISW, $2,954,750. Werk Nick Rating: A. Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Enforceable, 122, c, 3, Tapit–Justwhistledixie, by Dixie Union. ($775,000 RNA Ylg ’18 KEESEP). O-John C. Oxley; B-Clearsky Farms (KY); T-Mark E. Casse. $80,000.
3–Silver State, 122, c, 3, Hard Spun–Supreme, by Empire Maker. ($450,000 Ylg ’18 KEESEP). O-Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC and Willis Horton Racing LLC; B-Stonestreet Thoroughbred Holdings LLC (KY); T-Steven M. Asmussen. $40,000.
Margins: 2HF, HF, 1HF. Odds: 7.50, 3.10, 3.00.
Also Ran: Farmington Road, Digital, Scabbard, Blackberry Wine, Moon Over Miami, Ready to Roll, Perfect Revenge, Shashashakemeup.
Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.

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Paynter’s Ring Leader Takes Dixie Belle

Sat, 2020-02-15 18:30

Ring Leader maintained her perfect record with a score over favored ‘TDN Rising Star’ Specially in the Listed Dixie Belle S. at Oaklawn Saturday evening. Second choice on the board, the bay, who broke her maiden at first asking at Canterbury Park in June and returned Jan. 24 to romp by 5 1/4 lengths in the mud locally, tracked from third behind an opening split of :22.48. She challenged three deep on the far turn and went on with it, turning into the home straight with all of the momentum. The $80,000 KEESEP yearling maintained her rapidly shrinking advantage all the way to the line as the slow-starting Specially took a late dive at Ring Leader, but would ultimately miss by a half-length.

“She’s improving,” trainer Mac Robertson said. “Obviously, she went from winning by a head at Canterbury to winning by five at Oaklawn. That’s a big move. Usually when they make that big of a move, they make another one. I don’t think it’s foolish to be high on a horse like that. They always come again. When they come that much from two to three, they always come again. It might not be next time. Might be in the fall or next year, but they come again. They get better.”

The dam, whose lone win from 10 starts was a $12,500 maiden claimer going this trip over the Golden Gate synthetic in December of 2012, has a juvenile colt by Mshawish. A half-sister to SW Jazzy Gallop (Victory Gallop), she foaled a filly by Atreides Jan. 21.  Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.
DIXIE BELLE S., $122,500, Oaklawn, 2-15, 3yo, f, 6f, 1:10.46, ft.
1–RING LEADER, 119, f, 3, by Paynter
                1st Dam: Ringmistress, by Bandini
                2nd Dam: Jasminola (Fr), by Seattle Dancer
                3rd Dam: Jasm, by Secretariat
1ST BLACK-TYPE WIN. ($80,000 Ylg ’18 KEESEP). O-Novogratz
Racing Stables Inc.; B-George Krikorian (KY); T-McLean
Robertson; J-Joseph Talamo. $75,000. Lifetime Record:
3-3-0-0, $143,400. *10th SW for her sire (by Awesome Again).
2–Specially, 118, f, 3, Tapiture–Peace Process, by War Front.
‘TDN Rising Star’. ($20,000 Wlg ’17 KEENOV; $40,000 Ylg ’18
FTKJUL; $475,000 2yo ’19 OBSMAR). O-John C. Oxley; B-Ikhana
Farm (KY); T-Mark E. Casse. $25,000.
3–Wasabi Girl, 119, f, 3, Shanghai Bobby–Tick Tick Boom, by
Cuvee. ($75,000 Wlg ’17 FTKNOV; $130,000 Ylg ’18 FTKJUL;
$190,000 RNA 2yo ’19 EASMAY). O-Winchell Thoroughbreds
LLC & Allen Creel; B-Highclere Inc. (KY); T-Steven M. Asmussen.
$12,500.
Margins: HF, 5HF, 3/4. Odds: 4.00, 0.70, 4.60.
Also Ran: Sassy Seneca, Miss Firecracker.

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Munnings Filly Bests British Idiom in Rachel Alexandra

Sat, 2020-02-15 18:26

   As has been well documented, the Fair Grounds road to the GI Kentucky Oaks has been enormously productive over the last 15 years, producing no fewer than eight winners on the first Friday in May, including Monomoy Girl (Tapizar) and Serengeti Empress (Alternation) in 2018 and 2019, respectively. Finite (Munnings) is well on her way to adding to that impressive total after registering her fifth consecutive victory in Saturday’s GII Rachel Alexandra S., easily lowering the colors of the previously unbeaten Eclipse Award winner British Idiom (Flashback).

Away in good order from her widest draw, Finite was a forward factor out of the stretch for the first time, but was consigned to a three-wide run around the first turn. British Idiom broke alertly and Javier Castellano looked to have an opportunity to get in and save some ground, but instead took the overland route and raced in her chief market rival’s slipstream on the backstretch run. Finite continued to cover ground on the second bend, with British Idiom in her wake and while the odds-on pop came out to launch her bid in upper stretch, Finite had all the answers and pulled clear with a fair bit of authority.

A maiden winner at third asking in a 6 1/2-furlong test over the Kentucky Downs turf, Finite romped by six in the one-mile Rags to Riches S. at Churchill Oct. 27 and made it three on the hop with a 3/4-length success in her two-turn bow in the Nov. 30 GII Golden Rod S. beneath the Twin Spires. She was more workmanlike than brilliant in winning the Jan. 18 Silverbulletday S. by a neck, but came on in leaps and bounds for that effort.

Pedigree Notes:

One of two serious Oaks chances for Munnings (GII Las Virgenes S. winner Venetian Harbor the other), Finite is a half-sister to 2018 G2 UAE Derby runner-up Reride (Candy Ride {Arg}) and her dam is a full-sister to no fewer than three full black-type winners, including MGSW Tapiture, GSW Rotation and SW & GSP Retap. The $200,000 Fasig-Tipton Midlantic graduate has a 2-year-old half-sister named Bankable (Candy Ride {Arg}) and a yearling half-brother by Gun Runner. Remit was most recently bred back to the latter.

Saturday, Fair Grounds
RACHEL ALEXANDRA S. PRESENTED BY FASIG-TIPTON-GII, $294,000, Fair Grounds, 2-15, 3yo, f, 1 1/16m, 1:43.97, ft.
1–FINITE, 122, f, 3, by Munnings
1st Dam: Remit (MSW, $257,556), by Tapit
2nd Dam: Free Spin, by Olympio
3rd Dam: Spin n Win, by Private Account
($200,000 2yo ’19 EASMAY). O-Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC,
Reiman, Thomas J., Dickson, William and Easter, Deborah A.;
B-Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC (KY); T-Steven M. Asmussen;
J-Ricardo Santana, Jr. $180,000. Lifetime Record: 7-5-2-0,
$638,349. *1/2 to Reride (Candy Ride {Arg}), MSW, $261,010.
Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree. Werk Nick
   Rating: A++.
2–British Idiom, 122, f, 3, Flashback–Rose and Shine, by Mr.
Sekiguchi. ($40,000 Ylg ’18 FTKOCT). O-Dubb, Michael, The
Elkstone Group, LLC (Stuart Grant), Madaket Stables LLC and
Bethlehem Stables LLC; B-Hargus Sexton, Sandra Sexton &
Silver Fern Farm, LLC (KY); T-Brad H. Cox. $60,000.
3–Swiss Skydiver, 122, f, 3, Daredevil–Expo Gold, by
Johannesburg. ($35,000 Ylg ’18 KEESEP). O-Peter J. Callahan;
B-WinStar Farm, LLC (KY); T-Kenneth G. McPeek. $30,000.
Margins: 4 3/4, 1 3/4, NK. Odds: 2.70, 0.90, 8.20.
Also Ran: Tempers Rising, Impeccable Style, His Glory, Ursula.
Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.

 

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Promising 3YOs Breeze at Santa Anita

Sat, 2020-02-15 16:39

C R K Stable’s Royal Act (American Pharoah), a gritty second to undefeated Thousand Words (Pioneerof the Nile) in the GIII Robert B. Lewis S. Feb. 1 and fellow Lee Searing colorbearer Honor A. P. (Honor Code), an exceptionally impressive maiden winner when last seen over a mile last October, were each out for Saturday morning breezes over the Santa Anita main track.

A $500,000 Keeneland September yearling purchase, Royal Act was making his dirt debut in the Lewis and sat a very wide trip, but plugged on gamely to drop a 3/4-length decision. The bay went five-eighths of a mile in 1:01.20 (15/58) Saturday morning.

“This was his first work since the Lewis, so he’ll let us know (where and when to run next),” trainer Peter Eurton said. “We’ll have him nominated everywhere so we have several options. The more distance the better for him.”

Options include the GII TwinSpires.com Louisiana Derby Mar. 21, the GI Curlin Florida Derby Mar. 28 and the GI Santa Anita Derby Apr. 4.

Honor A. P. was a from-the-clouds second to recent GII San Vicente S. runner-up Ginobili (Munnings) on his six-furlong debut at Del Mar Aug. 17 and made many sit up and take notice with a 5 1/4-length graduation when stretched to a route of ground at Santa Anita Oct. 10. The $850,000 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga yearling tuned up for his much-anticipated sophomore debut with a stamina-building seven-furlong move that was clocked in 1:27 Saturday morning (XBTV video).

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First Foal for Irish War Cry a Colt

Sat, 2020-02-15 14:42

The first foal by Northview Stallion Station’s Irish War Cry (Curlin–Irish Sovereign, by Polish Numbers) was born the evening of Feb. 12 at Blackstone Farm in Pennsylvania when Danu (Ire) (Cape Cross {Ire}) delivered a chestnut colt. She is the second foal for her dam, who is herself out of a half-sister to champion juvenile Action This Day (Kris S.).

“From all reports he’s a big-boned, strapping colt,” said Martin Somers of High Kings Racing, who purchased Danu as a yearling in 2015. “This is our first time breeding and we were delighted that we could breed to such a stallion like Irish War Cry.”

New Jersey-bred Irish War Cry was a leading 3-year-old of his generation in 2017, winning the GII Lambholm South Fountain of Youth S. and GII Wood Memorial S. before finishing runner-up after setting the pace in the GI Belmont S. He added a 4 1/2-length success in the GIII Pimlico Special at four.

Irish War Cry covered 83 mares his first season. The syndicated 6-year-old stallion stands his second season for $6,500 live foal, payable when the foal stands and nurses.

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Pricey Candy Ride Colt Figures Things Out Late in Gulfstream Debut

Sat, 2020-02-15 14:24

MONEY MOVES (c, 3, Candy Ride {Arg}–Citizen Advocate, by Proud Citizen), a $975,000 OBS April purchase last year after a :10 flat breeze, figured things out late in his Saturday unveiling to begin repaying his owners’ investment. Slowly away, he advanced some down the backside and on the turn but still had his work cut out for him as longshot Sagamore Mischief (Into Mischief) headed for home well in front. Money Moves found his stride down the center of the muddy stretch, however, and inhaled the pacesetter to score by a length in 1:11.76. Sales history: $975,000 2yo ’19 OBSAPR. Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0.
O-Robert V LaPenta & Bortolazzo Stable. B-Whitehall Lane Farm (Ky). T-Todd A Pletcher.

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Country House Retired

Fri, 2020-02-14 18:01

The 2019 GI Kentucky Derby winner Country House (Lookin At Lucky–Quake Lake, by War Chant) has been retired following a bout with laminitis, according to a statement put out by the Country House ownership group Friday evening. The 4-year-old, campaigned by Mrs. Joseph Shields Jr., E.J.M. McFadden Jr. and LNJ Foxwoods, was promoted to first in the Derby after the disqualification of champion Maximum Security (New Year’s Day), retires with two wins in seven starts and earnings of $2,120,175. Stud plans are forthcoming.

“On June 27, Country House was sent to Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital for a routine lameness examination, to be followed up by turn out,” read the Blackwood statement. “Country House was examined by Dr. Larry Bramlage and was diagnosed with proximal suspensory ligament desmitis on both front fetlocks. Country House experienced complications and was re-admitted to Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital on July 1, where he was treated for a right front lower leg infection.

“Over the course of the next two weeks, the team at Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital got the infection under control, but as a result of his non-weight bearing right front foot, he developed laminitis in his left front foot. He was released on July 15 and returned to Blackwood for stall rest. Over the coming months, Dr. Scott Morrison was able to stabilize the foot and make Country House more comfortable. He is currently on turn out and we anticipate that he will make a full recovery, but because of the laminitis and the subsequent steps taken to save his life, he will never race again.

Over the past seven months, our primary focus has solely been on Country House and his health. With the Derby right around the corner and his health much improved, we felt it was an appropriate time to make this announcement. We appreciate everyone’s patience during this difficult time.”

His trainer Bill Mott said that his Derby effort came at a time when he was just coming into himself and that his future had been bright.

“I think he was an up-and-coming horse,” said Mott. “He’s a big, strong, rugged horse that seemed to be just learning what the game was all about by the time he got to the Derby. He was a horse that we were really looking forward to his progression as an older horse. He would have been a really good horse for these older handicap races, whether it be the Saudi Cup or the Dubai World Cup or potentially a Breeders’ Cup type. He obviously got the classic distance of 1 1/4 miles, so that put him in a group that eliminates a lot of horses. One of the reasons that we felt he would be such a nice horse in the future was his size and strength. He had such great scope and balance to him, and he was the type of horse that you’d be looking for in a handicap horse.”

Tabbed a ‘TDN Rising Star’ when breaking his maiden third out at Gulfstream in January of 2019, Country House was second to future GI Preakness S. contender War of Will (War Front) in the GII Risen Star S. that February. Rallying strongly to be fourth in the GII Louisiana Derby a month later, the chestnut earned his way into the Derby starting gate with a third in the GI Arkansas Derby.

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Davidson Killed, Fadlovich Injured in Car Accident

Fri, 2020-02-14 15:57

Trainer Coty Lee Davidson, 33, was killed and jockey Megan Fadlovich, 30, was injured in a single-vehicle accident on I-75S at County Road 329 in Florida just after midnight Feb. 14, Gainesville.com reported. Neither were wearing seatbelts.

The vehicle suddenly veered off the road and overturned, ejecting Fadlovich from the passenger seat and over a guardrail. She fell 40 feet onto another guardrail on CR 329. She was taken to Ocala Regional Medical Center and is in serious conditioner.

Davidson, the driver, got out of the vehicle to check on Fadlovich and fell over the overpass onto the CR 329 should, where he passed away.

Originally from Los Angeles, California, Davidson took out his trainer’s license in 2011 and has 18 wins to his credit from 168 starts. The majority of his starts came in 2018 and 2019, including a second-place effort by Mr. Chocolate Chip in the 2018 GIII Bashford Manor S. at Churchill Downs. Davidson was also well known for his talent starting 2-year-olds and had been spending the winter months doing so in Ocala in recent years.

A jockey since 2010, Fadlovich had recently earned her milestone 500th win. She currently has 502 wins in 4,457 starts as a jockey and was preparing to saddle her first horse as a trainer Saturday, Mr Wrench It (Lookin at Lucky), in the seventh race at Tampa Bay Downs.

The couple had been dating since the summer of 2019 and notched several victories together on the Ohio-West Virginia circuit. They were currently based at Classic Mile Training Center in Ocala, Florida for the winter, where they had horses of racing age and a string of 2-year-olds they were breaking.

Davidson leaves behind a daughter from a previous relationship. Funeral arrangements are pending. Fadlovich is listed in serious condition at Ocala Regional Medical Center.

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Gouverneur Morris Gets the Job Done in Seasonal Debut

Fri, 2020-02-14 15:38

6th-Tampa Bay Downs, $20,000, Alw (NW1X)/Opt. Clm ($75,000), 2-14, 3yo, 1m 40y, 1:38.88, ft.
GOUVERNEUR MORRIS (c, 3, Constitution–Addison Run {SP}, by Unbridled’s Song) had to overcome a few tense moments, but ultimately kicked off his sophomore season successfully Friday afternoon at Tampa. A nine-length debut winner sprinting in the Saratoga slop Sept. 2, the grey was second as the favorite behind a dominant performance from Maxfield (Street Sense) and ahead of last month’s GIII Lecomte S. winner Enforceable (Tapit). His connections opted to skip a trip to the Breeders’ Cup last fall to instead focus on this year’s Classics, and Gouverneur Morris was pounded down to 1-2 here favoritism despite finding a particularly strong group of foes for a Tampa allowance. Away well as his stablemate Dudley Square (Into Mischief) dropped pilot Daniel Centeno leaving the gate, Gouverneur Morris settled into a stalking spot out in the clear as Untitled (Khozan), a big-figure debut winner who was fourth in the GIII Swale S. Feb. 1 after a private purchase, made the running. The favorite seemed to be requiring a lot of encouragement from John Velazquez to keep up with Untitled after a :47.50 half, but he finally built up a head of steam at the top of the stretch and ultimately wore down his rival to prevail by 1 1/4 lengths in near track record time.

“I had to change my strategy [when Dudley Square lost his jockey], because I was expecting that horse to be on the lead,” Velazquez said. “But it worked out anyway. He finished real nice. This was a real tough race to come off the bench, but you have to start somewhere.”

Team Valor’s Barry Irwin added, “Johnny told me that the plan was for [Dudley Square] to set the pace, but when that horse lost his jockey, [Gouverneur Morris] had to go up and do the dirty work on the turn,” Irwin said. “He’s kind of a quirky horse. In the morning, he’ll get halfway down the stretch and kind of lose interest or something, then he’ll just refocus and take off… That’s kind of what he did today on the turn. It looked like he was floundering for a second, then when Johnny got after him he put [Untitled] away… Each of his last three workouts, he has improved so much.”

The winner, who was a $360,000 KEENOV ’16 in utero purchase and who brought $600,000 at Fasig-Tipton Gulfstream last year after a :10 1/5 breeze, is half to Final Jeopardy (Street Sense), MGSP, $219,833; a 2-year-old colt by Runhappy and a yearling filly by Into Mischief. His third dam is MGSW Fleet Lady (Avenue of Flags), who produced 2008 champion 2-year-old colt and sire Midshipman (Unbridled’s Song) as well as GSW Fast Cookie (Deputy), the dam of brilliant MGISW and young sire Frosted (Tapit). Trainer Todd Pletcher has used an easier Tampa Bay Downs start as a launchpad to Triple Crown trail success several times in recent memory, with the likes of 2017 GI Kentucky Derby winner Always Dreaming (Bodemeister); 2016 GI Wood Memorial S. winner Outwork (Uncle Mo); and 2018 GII Wood Memorial S. hero Vino Rosso (Curlin), last year’s GI Breeders’ Cup Classic romper and champion older male. Sales history: $200,000 Ylg ’18 KEESEP; $600,000 2yo ’19 FTFMAR. Lifetime Record: GISP, 3-2-1-0, $161,500. Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.
O-Team Valor International & WinStar Farm LLC; B-Machmer Hall, Carrie Brogden, Craig Brogden & James F. Miller (KY); T-Todd A. Pletcher.

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Monmouth Park Condition Book and Stall Apps Available

Fri, 2020-02-14 14:51

The first condition book for Monmouth Park’s 2020 racing season, which begins May 2, and stall applications are available online and in the racing office. The Oceanport oval opens for stabling Apr. 11 and training begins Apr. 15. The meet runs through Sept. 27 and is highlighted by the July 18 GI Haskell Invitational S.

Once again, all trainers will receive a $300 starter bonus with all owners guaranteed $500 per runner. In addition, trainers stabled at Monmouth will be covered by a blanket worker’s compensation policy, provided by the New Jersey Injury Compensation Board.

The post Monmouth Park Condition Book and Stall Apps Available appeared first on TDN | Thoroughbred Daily News | Horse Racing News, Results and Video | Thoroughbred Breeding and Auctions.

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