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Updated: 6 days 10 hours ago

Three Jockeys to Become Test for Contested HISA Enforcement

Tue, 2022-08-02 16:59

The legal rabbit hole deepened on Tuesday in one of four lawsuits designed to derail the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act Authority (HISA), pulling jockeys Drayden Van Dyke, Miguel Vazquez and Edwin Gonzalez into the fray as plaintiffs alleged new harms resulting from rule enforcement they believe is in contempt of a court order.

Plaintiffs led by Louisiana, West Virginia, and the Jockeys' Guild moved for a federal judge to issue an immediate order to enforce its July 26 injunction to keep Guild-member jockeys from being subject to HISA rules nationwide. The plaintiffs also want the judge to make the HISA defendants explain to the court why they should not be held in contempt for “flagrantly violating this Court's injunction within a mere four days after this Court entered it.”

A series of filings Aug. 2 in United States District Court (Western District of Louisiana) centers on different interpretations the two sides have regarding what Judge Terry Doughty meant when he wrote in that July 26 injunction that, “The geographic scope of the injunction shall be limited to the states of Louisiana and West Virginia, and as to all Plaintiffs in this proceeding.”

The plaintiffs-most specifically, the Guild-believe the judge's words apply to “all of the members of the Jockeys' Guild, regardless of the U.S. jurisdiction in which the jockey is riding.”

The HISA defendants have steadfastly maintained that individual members of the Guild are clearly not plaintiffs in the lawsuit, and to consider them that way “would wreak havoc on the sport. For example, many jockeys are not Guild members, such that different rules would apply to jockeys riding in the same race.”

Separately, the defendants have made a formal motion asking for a clarification of the wording in the injunction, but the court docket indicates the judge might not offer one until next week, unless Doughty opts to expedite the matter.

And beyond that, the defendants' appeal of their turned-down request to put a stay on the entirety of the July 26 preliminary injunction is headed for the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Confused yet? There's more. This case is only one of four lawsuits initiated at the federal level this year to keep HISA rules from going into effect nationwide. The first two got tossed out by judges but are in the process of being appealed. The fourth just got filed on Monday in a Texas court.

According to Tuesday's filings, Guild-member jockeys Van Dyke, Vazquez and Gonzalez are just the first three jockeys that the plaintiffs believe are being harmed by the allegedly contemptuous enforcement of HISA safety rules.

“Though the ink has not yet dried on this Court's order preliminarily enjoining Defendants from enforcing HISA's unlawful rules, some Defendants have already decided that they need not follow the Order,” the filing stated. “[D]espite the Order's plain text, the Authority Defendants continue to implement and enforce the enjoined rules against members of Plaintiff Jockeys' Guild.”

According to the filings, on July 27, one day after the allegedly unclear order was issued, a HISA spokesperson stated that “HISA will continue to enforce its rules in all applicable jurisdictions, with the exception of Louisiana and West Virginia. Outside of those states, the court order applies only to the five individuals specifically named in the case.”

And on July 29, the filings stated, the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) put out an advisory that stated, “Unless and until a federal court clarifies an earlier ruling by indicating otherwise, the CHRB will continue to honor its agreement with HISA by enforcing HISA safety rules, including the rules covering use of the riding crop, as the CHRB has been doing since HISA rules went into effect on July 1.”

Then on July 30, Del Mar stewards issued a ruling against Van Dyke for his use of the riding crop in a July 29 race that they deemed to be in violation of HISA Rule 2280, imposing a $250 fine and one-day suspension.

“The suspension is set to preclude Mr. Van Dyke from racing on Aug. 6, but he must confirm participation on Aug. 3 for that race day,” Tuesday's filing stated. “To be clear, Mr. Van Dyke is a member of Plaintiff Jockeys' Guild and thus Defendants are enjoined from implementing and enforcing the enjoined Racetrack Safety Rules against Mr. Van Dyke.”

The filing continued: “Compounding this problem, over the weekend, Plaintiffs were informed that the HISA stewards at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale, Florida plan to issue multiple rulings against members of Plaintiff Jockeys' Guild for similar violations.”

For actions during July 31 races, the filing stated, “HISA stewards intend to issue written rulings on Aug. 5 against Miguel Vazquez [for] a violation of enjoined HISA Rule 2280 that prohibits a jockey from raising his wrist above a certain point before striking a horse with his riding crop; and Edwin Gonzalez for a violation of enjoined HISA Rule 2280 for a different riding crop violation.”

Both Gulfstream jockeys are expected to receive fines of $250 each, one-day suspensions, and points to escalate penalties for subsequent violations.

“Through these continued enforcement actions, the Authority Defendants thus have made clear that they seek to enforce enjoined rules against Plaintiffs' members throughout the country outside of Louisiana and West Virginia,” the plaintiffs' filing stated.

The plaintiffs are asking the judge to award compensatory damages to cover the allegedly lost purse earnings that the above three riders will incur, plus a “coercive fine of $250 per day for each day any points assessed…as a result of HISA's contempt are not purged from their records.”

The Guild-backed plaintiffs also want those damages to apply to any other Guild members who get subsequently penalized while this issue is contested in the courts.

With regard to how the judge might rule in his clarification of the injunction, the plaintiffs noted in court documents that “nearly 50 years of Supreme Court case law” is on their side, because precedents confirm that “members of associations are entitled to the benefits that their associations obtain in litigation.”

In the overall lawsuit, the HISA Authority, the Federal Trade Commission, and board members and overseers of both entities are alleged to have violated the Fourth, Seventh and Tenth Amendments to the Constitution, plus the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), which governs the process by which federal agencies develop and issue regulations. An adverse ruling against the defendants could mean a reopening of public commentary periods and a rewrite of all existing and in-the-pipeline HISA rules.

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Kentucky Downs Will Raise Three Stakes Purses If Those Fields Have Grade I Winner

Tue, 2022-08-02 16:28

The seven-day FanDuel Meet at Kentucky Downs could have up to six races worth $1 million for registered Kentucky-breds with purse incentives added to the $750,000 GIII Kentucky Downs Ladies Turf, $600,000 GII Franklin-Simpson and $600,000 GIII Mint Ladies Sprint.

Kentucky Downs will bump any of those purses to $1 million, including money from the Kentucky Thoroughbred Development Fund (KTDF), if a Grade or Group 1 winner starts in that stakes race. The increase will match the purse structure for Kentucky Downs' three existing $1 million races, with $550,000 in association money that every horse runs for regardless of where it was born and an additional $450,000 in KTDF supplements.

“This is just another step as Kentucky Downs works to improve its racing program and to reward horse owners who make this great industry possible,” said Ted Nicholson, Kentucky Downs' Vice President for Racing. “We've been fortunate to receive graded designation for a number stakes in recent years, and now the objective is to get them upgraded. The ultimate goal is to get a Grade I designation.

“In that regard, money talks–or certainly helps. The KTDF makes it possible for us to have $1 million races for Kentucky-breds, which dominate racing. But we also want to make the base purse attractive to horsemen who have quality horses that weren't born in the commonwealth.”

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Texas Track Group Files Latest HISA Lawsuit

Mon, 2022-08-01 19:02

A group of entities associated with various racing-related industries in Texas, including the owners of Lone Star Park, has filed a new lawsuit against the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act (HISA) in which declaratory and injunctive relief is sought along with a request for a preliminary injunction, according to court filing dated July 29.

Submitted to the United States District Court for the Northern District of Texas, Amarillo Division, the suit focuses on the relative power of the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority–the umbrella non-profit established by the Act–to implement the program.

This latest filing is in the same district court–but different division–as a separate lawsuit filed by the National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association (NHBPA) in 2021.

Earlier this year, a federal judge threw out that case. The NHBPA subsequently filed an appeal with the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, which is pending.

“The 'Authority' is empowered by law to, among other things, subpoena documents and compel testimony, search businesses and private databases and seize documents, conduct adjudicatory proceedings, and prosecute actions in federal court like other federal prosecutors,” the latest filing states.

“No private individuals have such powers. No private individual can show up at one's door and demand documents and testimony under sanction of law. No private individual can conduct a private search and seizure. And no private individual has the power to hale another private citizen into court to enforce offenses against the public. But the “Authority” does,” the filing adds.

So far, the Texas Racing Commission (TRC) has refused to comply with Act, which went into effect at the start of July, arguing that under Texas law only the commission has the authority to oversee horse racing in the state. HISA's current remit covers only Thoroughbred racing.

As a result, the signal from the state's Thoroughbred tracks cannot be sent out of state and advance deposit wagering companies are prevented from taking betting on Texas Thoroughbred races. There are no Thoroughbred meets scheduled in Texas between now and the end of the year.

According to a spokesperson for the Authority, HISA will mount a legal defence “while the Authority's focus remains on implementing the Racetrack Safety program and finalizing Anti-Doping and Medication Control rules.” Implementation for the latter is scheduled for Jan. 2023.

“The majority of racing participants support HISA's mission to protect those who play by the rules and hold those who fail to do so accountable in order to keep our equine and human athletes safe and the competition fair,” wrote the HISA spokesperson.

“The immense collaboration with state racing commissions, stewards, veterinarians, racetracks, trainers, and other horsemen that has taken place to date is evidence of this support, and we intend to continue to fulfill our mandate and work to make the industry safer,” the spokesperson added.

The plaintiffs include Global Gaming LSP, a limited liability company which owns Lone Star Park, and Gulf Coast Racing LLC, which owns a greyhound racetrack located in Nueces County, Texas. Gulf Coast Racing is allegedly seeking to redesignate the track as a Class 2 horseracing track, according to the filing.

The other two plaintiffs consist of LRP Group Ltd. a limited partnership working towards “operating an active horseracing track” in the south of the state, the filing states, and Valle De Los Tesoros, a limited partnership similarly looking to operate a horseracing track in South Texas, one currently designated inactive by the TRC.

It's unclear whether the planned racetracks listed in the suit are intended for Thoroughbred racing.

Among the arguments the plaintiffs make is that the legal jurisdiction given the Authority is of government power “in general” and of executive power “in particular,” but that the current design of the Authority renders it unconstitutional, meaning it is exercising “nothing other than naked legislative power.”

The plaintiffs write: “The 'Board' of the 'Authority,' comprising private individuals appointed through a Nominating Committee whose membership is established by the Authority's own incorporation documents, has not been appointed through the constitutionally required mechanisms for the exercise of executive power.”

To argue their position, the plaintiffs reference such historic texts as The Federalist papers of U.S. founding father, Alexander Hamilton, and “Commentaries on the Laws of England,” by William Blackstone, an English jurist from the 18th century who long suffered terrible gout.

This latest lawsuit constitutes the fourth legal challenge to HISA. Aside from the NHBPA filing, a case filed by the state of Oklahoma in the United States District Court, Eastern Division of Kentucky, is similarly ongoing.

Late last month, Louisiana and West Virginia won a preliminary injunction in federal court aimed at keeping HISA from being implemented in those two states until the Act's constitutionality gets decided in full.

HISA has since filed motions for stay pending appeal with the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

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HISA Seeks Stay After Louisiana, West Virginia Ruling

Mon, 2022-08-01 17:37

Just six days after Horse Racing Integrity and Safety Authority (HISA) opponents won a round in court in which a federal judge granted a preliminary injunction that halted implementation of HISA rules going into effect in Louisiana and West Virginia, HISA and the Federal Trade Commission were back in court Monday filing an emergency motion for a stay pending appeal.

The motion was filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

The filing from HISA maintains that when granting the preliminary injunction, the court erred in regards to the length of the period required for public comment. Lawyers for HISA contend that the Federal Trade Commission, which oversees HISA, has provided 14 days for public comment following its publication of proposed rules, which does not violate any rules. They contend that the “court mistakenly believed required the Commission to provide a minimum 30-day comment period.”

The filing continues: “A stay is warranted because that ruling rests on legal error and does not reflect a sound balancing of the equities. The APA (Administrative Procedure Act) imposes no minimum comment period, and the district court plainly erred in concluding otherwise.”

When granting an injunction to the plaintiffs, which included the Jockeys' Guild and the states of West Virginia and Louisiana, Judge Terry Doughty of U.S. District Court (Western District of Louisiana) did not appear to consider the public comment period a major factor in his decision. Instead, he focused on the plaintiffs allegations that HISA was causing them irreparable harm and that an injunction was needed while still other courts were deciding the constitutionality of the Horse Racing Integrity and Safety Act.

“Here, there is an obvious link between the HISA rules and Plaintiffs' alleged injuries,” Doughty wrote. “All the above alleged injuries are 'fairly traceable' to the rules enacted thus far by HISA and the FTC.”

Borrowing a page from their adversaries, HISA attorneys wrote that if they are not granted a stay and HISA regulations cannot immediately be implemented in West Virginia and Louisiana that “will cause grave and irreparable harm to the horseracing industry and the public in contravention of Congress's clear intent.” They called Doughty's decision a case of “flagrant judicial overreach.”

Two separate federal courts have already dismissed lawsuits from the same plaintiffs that include similar arguments made before Doughty's court and question whether or not HISA is constitutional. Both courts ruled in favor of HISA but those decisions have been appealed.

“The preliminary injunction is unlikely to survive appeal and, in the meantime, will cause irreparable damage to the Authority's ability to implement the Act in a timely and orderly fashion,” HISA's court filing reads.

The HISA filing relies on the same arguments that gave birth to the Horse Racing Integrity and Safety Act, that when it comes to integrity and safety, the industry was adrift, in need of change and that the best way to accomplish that was through a central authority.

“The importance of this program cannot be overstated as [the Authority] build[s] on advances the industry has already

made by implementing national, uniform rules and regulations, increasing accountability, and using data- and research-driven solutions to enhance the safety of our horses and jockeys,” the filing reads.

The filing concludes: “This Court should stay the order pending appeal as soon as possible, but no later than Aug. 5, 2022 (as the harm from the injunction mounts with each racing day).

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City of Light Represented By First Two Winners

Mon, 2022-08-01 16:53

About 24 hours before Lane's End Farm's City of Light (Quality Road–Paris Notion, by Dehere) celebrated his first American winner in the form of Ellis Park second-time starter Roja Ligera, the first-crop stallion was represented by his first winner when the colt City of Knowledge raced away to graduate by daylight in a 5 1/2-furlong allowance over a sloppy strip at Hipodromo Camarero outside of San Juan, Puerto Rico, Saturday, July 30.

Sent off the 4-5 second choice in a field of six, the $100,000 Keeneland September yearling and $32,000 OBS March breezer won the break and was soon clear beneath leading jockey Juan Diaz through an opening quarter-mile in :23.24. Opening up on his rivals on the turn, the dark bay carried a five-length advantage into the final eighth of a mile and went on to best favored Husky Driver (Outwork) by a handy 5 3/4 lengths. The final time was 1:04.71 (see below, SC 3).

 

 

Bred in Kentucky by Betz/B & K Canetti/J Betz/D J Stables/Graves/GTL, City of Knowledge is the first foal out of three-time winner and $174,425 earner Mo Knows (Uncle Mo), a half-sister to GSW & GISP Payton d'Oro, who was acquired by Bill Betz's Betz Thoroughbreds for $285,000 with the colt in utero at the 2019 Keeneland November Sale. Mo Knows is also the dam of a yearling colt by American Pharoah and a colt foal by Justify.

Roja Ligera made it a weekend double for City of Light when running out a 1 1/4-length winner of a sloppy Ellis maiden July 31. The bay filly took some nibbles at 9-1 for her July 1 debut at Churchill, but bombed the start and finished well-beaten.

Spectacular in winning the GI Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile and GI Pegasus World Cup Invitational S., City of Light is the sire of 101 foals of racing age and stood the most recent breeding season for $60,000 at Lane's End.

 

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KTDF Advisory Committee Meets Tuesday

Mon, 2022-08-01 12:40

The Kentucky Thoroughbred Development Fund (KTDF) Advisory Committee meets at 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 2 at the offices of the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association (4079 Iron Works Parkway, Lexington, KY 40511). The public can attend or watch the meeting through the agency's YouTube channel. Some notables, but not all, on agenda include the election of a Chair and Vice-Chair, Kentucky Downs' Amendment request for KTDF Stakes & Claiming Races, Churchill Downs' 2022 September Meet KTDF Allotment request, and Pari-Mutual Tax: Waqas Ahmed, director, Pari-Mutual Wagering & Compliance.

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Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony to be Held August 5

Mon, 2022-08-01 12:15

The National Museum of Racing will induct the 2022 Hall of Fame class Friday, Aug. 5 at Fasig-Tipton. The event is slated to begin at 10:30 a.m. Tom Durkin will serve as the master of ceremonies. The event is open to the public and free to attend. The ceremony will also be broadcast live on the Museum website at racingmuseum.org. A stellar class of inductees comprises the 2022 ceremony, namely four-time Eclipse Award winner Beholder (Henny Hughes); Hillsdale (Take Away), who is also the first Indiana-bred in the Hall of Fame; 1984 Eclipse Turf Female Champion Royal Heroine (Ire); and G1 Queen Anne S. conqueror, two-time Eclipse Award winner Tepin (Bernstein). Trainer Oscar White is the sole human inductee along with Pillars of the Turf James Cox Brady, Marshall Cassidy, and James Ben Ali Haggin.

Several current Hall of Famers will take part in a special autograph signing at the Museum on Saturday, Aug. 6 from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. The following members are scheduled to participate (subject to change): Braulio Baeza, Mark Casse, Ramon Dominguez, Janet Elliot, Earlie Fires, Sandy Hawley, Richard Mandella, Jose Santos, Gary Stevens, and Nick Zito. For $25, fans will receive a commemorative 2022 Hall of Fame induction weekend poster for the members to sign. There will only be 100 posters for this event and they are available on a first-come, first served basis. Admission to the Museum will be free from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.

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Santa Anita 2022-23 Winter/Spring Stakes Schedule Released

Mon, 2022-08-01 11:05

Santa Anita Park's 2022-23 Winter/Spring Stakes Schedule will offer a total of 93 stakes, 10 of them Grade I events, including  Apr. 8 showcasing the GI $750,000 Runhappy Santa Anita Derby, and 58 graded races beginning with the track's traditional opener on Monday, Dec. 26 through closing day, June 18. The track's popular 'Ship & Win' program will again provide significant monetary incentives for out-of-state runners. Opening day will feature a total of six graded stakes, highlighted by three Grade I, $300,000 events: the Runhappy Malibu, the La Brea, and the American Oaks. The GII Mathis Mile, GII San Antonio, and the GII San Gabriel S. are also on the docket. The complete schedule can be viewed here.

“We're pleased to be able to announce our Winter/Spring stakes schedule at this time and to once again let everyone know that our 'Ship & Win' program will be available to those out of state horses that qualify throughout the meet,” said Santa Anita Director of Racing, and Racing Secretary, Chris Merz. “We feel there is something for everyone in this stakes schedule and we are excited to offer it.  We worked diligently with trainers and other industry stakeholders to create a program that suits our horse population and caters to the needs of our owners and horsemen.”

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KEEP Foundation Launches Gateway Education Program

Mon, 2022-08-01 10:51

The Kentucky Equine Education Project (KEEP) Foundation has launched the Gateway Education Program, a job shadow opportunity for Fayette County high school seniors. The program allows students the opportunity to observe professionals in the equine industry and experience a day in the life of that operation while gaining a real life understanding of careers, career pathways, and the education and skills needed.

Students with little to no experience with horses will attend an orientation session at the Kentucky Equine Adoption Center. They will participate in an introductory level equine curriculum program before starting, while those with equine experience will proceed straight into the job shadow. For the 2022-2023 school year, the KEEP Foundation has partnered with Locust Trace AgriScience Center, and the Fayette County Public Schools' Experience Based Career Education program, with a long term goal of expanding into surrounding areas and eventually statewide.

“This is such a great opportunity for students to receive first-hand experience in exploring the countless careers in the equine industry,” said Alexandra Harper, Executive Director for the KEEP Foundation. “Our industry relies heavily on the next generation of horsemen and women, and we hope this program will help address and reduce future industry workforce issues.”

Interested students, or businesses wanting to participate as a host site, are encouraged to email Alexandra Harper alexandra@horseswork.com and if you'd like to make a donation in support of the KEEP Foundation's initiatives, those can be made here.

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Pricey Filly ‘Justifies’ Rising Stardom

Sun, 2022-07-31 21:27

Despite her $725,000 Keeneland September price tag, C R K Stable's Justique (Justify–Grazie Mille, by Bernardini) snuck a bit under the radar Sunday evening as Bob Baffert-trained Home Cooking (Honor Code) took virtually every dollar of tote support in a salty looking Del Mar maiden special weight. But there was no missing Justique in the stretch, as she inhaled her competition super impressively to become her freshman sire (by Scat Daddy)'s sixth individual winner and second 'TDN Rising Star'.

Bidding to become the first debut winner for trainer John Shirreffs since June of 2019 (his second most recent was future GISW Hard Not to Love {Hard Spun}), the half-sister to fellow freshman sire Mo Town (Uncle Mo), GISW, $519,600, was very slowly away as 1-2 Home Cooking knocked heads with $600,000 2-year-old purchase Fourth Street (Street Sense) on the front end. Justique picked rivals off rapidly midway on the turn for home, but still had her work cut out for her as Kissed by Fire (Friesan Fire)–herself a $350,000 FTMMAY grad–ranged up and looked the most likely spoiler. But Justique really caught the eye as the top two passed the eight pole, and she bowled over the top of them under just a hand ride with a move that–dare we say–was a bit reminiscent the one made by Shirreffs' Hall of Fame mare Zenyatta (Street Cry {Ire}) in her own unveiling. The winning margin was three lengths and the final time was 1:04.29. Kissed by Fire bested the big chalk for second.

Triple Crown winner Justify has already been represented by two graded/group-winning fillies in fellow 'Rising Star' and G2 Airlie Stud S. heroine Statuette and GIII Schuylerville S. winner Just Cindy. The Justify over Bernardini cross also produced last week's five-length Ellis debut scorer Justa Warrior. Justique's co-breeder John Gunther bred Justify too.

Mo Town, who has three winners thus far himself and stands alongside Justify at Coolmore, got the 'Rising Star' nod for a second-out romp on the stretch-out in 2016. He immediately added the GII Remsen S. and reached the highest level on the Del Mar lawn the following season when reinventing himself as a turf horse and annexing the GI Hollywood Derby.

Justique's second dam Molto Vita (Carson City) was a GSW/MGISP sprinter who also produced SW/GSPs Jaguar Paw (Giant's Causeway) and Venetian Mask (Pulpit). Third dam Princess Polonia (Danzig) was a graded winner as well.

Dam Grazie Mille produced a full-sister to Justique Mar. 29 and was bred back to 'Rising Star' factory Into Mischief for 2023.

8th-Del Mar, $80,000, Msw, 7-31, 2yo, f, 5 1/2f, 1:04.29, ft, 3 lengths.
JUSTIQUE, f, 2, Justify
                1st Dam: Grazie Mille, by Bernardini
                2nd Dam: Molto Vita, by Carson City
                3rd Dam: Princess Polonia, by Danzig
Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG. Free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree.
O-C R K Stable LLC. B-John D. Gunther & Eurowest Bloodstock (Ky). T-John A. Shirreffs. *$725,000 ylg '21 KEESEP. **Margin of victory and total purse not official; result chart unavailable at the time of publishing.

 

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Gunite Game in Amsterdam Victory, Corniche Fades to Last

Sun, 2022-07-31 17:56

While returning champion Corniche (Quality Road) faded to last, Gunite (c, 3, Gun Runner–Simple Surprise, by Cowboy Cal) completed a big weekend at Saratoga for Winchell Thoroughbreds and trainer Steve Asmussen with a gritty victory in the GII Amsterdam S. in upstate New York Sunday. Sent off at 7-1, Gunite battled Pinehurst (Twirling Candy) through fractions of :21.78 and :44.60, while Corniche sat in stalking position behind the dueling leaders. As the champ backed up on the turn, Gunite strode to the lead into the lane before bravely holding off Accretive (Practical Joke) to win by a neck while completing the 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:15.75.

Winchell Thoroughbreds was in the Saratoga winner's circle Saturday with GII Jim Dandy S. winner Epicenter (Not This Time), while Asmussen made the trip with both Epicenter and GI Alfred G. Vanderbilt H. winner Jackie's Warrior (Maclean's Music).

Sunday, Saratoga
AMSTERDAM S.-GII, $200,000, Saratoga, 7-31, 3yo, 6 1/2f, 1:15.75, ft.
1–GUNITE, 122, c, 3, by Gun Runner
                1st Dam: Simple Surprise (SW, $185,446), by Cowboy Cal
                2nd Dam: Simplify, by Pulpit
                3rd Dam: Classic Olympio, by Olympio
O/B-Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC (KY); T-Steven M. Asmussen;
J-Tyler Gaffalione. $110,000. Lifetime Record: GISW, 9-4-3-1,
$548,099. Werk Nick Rating: A+++. *Triple Plus*
Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Accretive, 118, g, 3, Practical Joke–Mallory Street, by Street
Sense. 1ST BLACK TYPE, 1ST GRADED BLACK TYPE. ($180,000
Ylg '20 KEESEP). O-Klaravich Stables, Inc.; B-Falcon Wood
Partners (KY); T-Chad C. Brown. $40,000.
3–Runninsonofagun, 119, g, 3, Gun Runner–Golden Artemis, by
Malibu Moon. ($16,000 2yo '21 KEEJAN). O-The Estate of Scott
Zimmerman; B-Dattt Farm LLC (KY); T-John T. Toscano, Jr.
$24,000.
Margins: NK, 4 1/4, 2HF. Odds: 7.40, 2.95, 56.25.
Also Ran: Pappacap, My Prankster, Hoist the Gold, Surfer Dude, Pinehurst, Corniche.
Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.

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Pletcher Filly is No Joke; Becomes Another ‘Rising Star’ for Into Mischief

Sun, 2022-07-31 16:56

StarLadies Racing, LNJ Foxwoods and Gainesway Stable's Prank (Into Mischef–Callingmissbrown, by Pulpit), a $500,000 half-sister to stablemate and recent GI Belmont S. winner Mo Donegal (Uncle Mo), GISW, $1,511,800, flashed serious speed and ability Sunday to justify 1-2 backing and be named an obvious 'TDN Rising Star'.

Emerging from the pack to seize early command, the Todd Pletcher pupil doled out a swift opening split of :21.91 before leaving High Class (Into Mischief) in the dust through a :45.11 half. From there it was only a question of how far, as Prank hit another gear when given a few reminders by Irad Ortiz, Jr. and scampered away by 9 3/4 lengths in 1:03.94. St. Benedicts Prep (Flatter) was best of the rest.

Pletcher unveiled another 'Rising Star' last Sunday in Into Mischief's granddaughter Kaling (Practical Joke), and Into Mischief was represented by another 'Rising Star' Saturday in the form of Bob Baffert-trained Newgate. The Spendthrift Farm stalwart has now sired 33 runners who earned the publication's nod.

Prank is a granddaughter of GISW and GI Kentucky Oaks runner-up Island Sand (Tabasco Cat), whose progeny include 2017 GI Spinaway S. runner-up Maya Malibu (Malibu Moon). Her dam was a debut winner at four. Callingmissbrown was barren to Catholic Boy for 2021 and lost her Curlin Foal for 2022. She was bred back to Uncle Mo this season.

6th-Saratoga, $105,000, Msw, 7-31, 2yo, f, 5 1/2f, 1:03.94, ft, 9 3/4 lengths.
PRANK, f, 2, Into Mischief
                1st Dam: Callingmissbrown, by Pulpit
                2nd Dam: Island Sand, by Tabasco Cat
                3rd Dam: Sue's Last Dance, by Forty Niner
Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0, $57,750. Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by TVG. Free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree.
O-StarLadies Racing, LNJ Foxwoods and Gainesway Stable (Antony Beck); B-Ashview Farm & Colts Neck Stables (KY); T-Todd A. Pletcher. *1/2 to Mo Donegal (Uncle Mo), GISW, $1,511,800. **$500,000 Ylg '21 KEESEP.

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City of Light Off The Blocks With First Winner

Sun, 2022-07-31 16:48

Three Diamond Farm & Joseph Besecker's Roja Ligera (City of Light) was the 9-5 post-time favorite for Sunday's rained-off event despite trailing all but one rival home following a poor break in a five furlong dirt sprint at Churchill Downs when debuted July 1. The $75,000 OBSMAR purchase (:9.4) got away much sharper this time out, coming between horses to contend for the lead before giving way to Catcha Later Mo (Mo Town). A length behind to her outside, Roja Ligera began to move around the far turn, drawing even with her rival at the quarter pole before drawing off from the three path. Collected Glory (Collected) gave chase along the rail from second and was gaining slowly but ran out of time as Roja Ligera went on to win by 1 1/4 lengths to become the first victor for her freshman sire (by Quality Road).

Also City of Light's first foal born, Roja Ligera is out of a half-sister to GSW Wishful Tomcat (Tactical Cat) and to the dam of MGSW Rated R Superstar (Kodiak Kowboy). The winner has a yearling half-sister by Mastery.

City of Light, winner of both the GI Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile at four and the GI Pegasus World Cup Invitational S. at five, currently stands alongside his sire at Lane's End for $60,000.

5th-Ellis, $60,000, Msw, 7-31, 2yo, f, 5 1/2f (off turf), 1:05.31, my, 1 1/4 lengths.
ROJA LIGERA (f, 2, City of Light–Redbud, by Union Rags) Sales History: $155,000 Ylg '21 KEESEP; $75,000 2yo '22 OBSMAR. Lifetime Record: 2-1-0-0, $37,139. Click for the Equibase.com chart.
O-Three Diamonds Farm & Jospeh Besecker; B-Machmer Hall (KY); T-Joe Sharp.

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Shahama Dominates Monmouth Oaks

Sun, 2022-07-31 15:13

Shahama stalked pacesetting favorite Juji's Map before exploding to the lead off the turn and sailing clear to her first U.S. victory in the GIII Monmouth Oaks Sunday on the Jersey Shore. Sent off at 8-5, the bay shadowed Juji's Map, the 4-5 favorite, through fractions of :24.67 and :48.71. Nudged at into the far turn, Shahama surged to the lead after three-quarters in 1:11.88 and bound away to an easy win.

“We thought Brad Cox's horse [Juju's Map] would be on the lead and we would be sitting second and that's just how it played out,” said Anthony Sciametta, assistant to winning trainer Todd Pletcher. “She's been training in New York and shipped down for this Saturday afternoon and did well and was well behaved. I know everyone who is around her likes her. She has a lot of class, as you can tell. I thought it was a two-horse race. You don't like to say that, but we thought it was between Juju's Map and us. Shahama was really good today.”

Winning jockey Jorge Vargas agreed the two favorites were the obvious class of the field.

“No disrespect to the others, but Shahama and Juju's Map were the classiest horses going in,” Vargas said. “I put my horse right on Juju's Map early. I was travelling good the whole time and I kept her just outside because Todd told me she doesn't like kickback from the dirt–she has a pretty face, she doesn't want to get that dirty. At the half-mile pole I picked it up with her. Paco Lopez tried to do the same, but didn't have as much horse as I did. By the three-eighths pole I was in front and it was over.”

Shahama had a productive winter in Dubai, where she won the UAE 1000 Guineas Trial and UAE 1000 Guineas in January and earned a spot in the GI Kentucky Oaks field with a win in the G3 UAE Oaks Feb. 18 for trainer Fawzi Nass. Transferred stateside to Pletcher's barn, she suffered her first loss when sixth in the Oaks and was coming off a runner-up effort in the June 25 GII Mother Goose S.

Pedigree Notes:

Shahama is a half-sister to multiple graded stakes winner Kensei (Mr. Greeley) and to champion Lookin at Lucky (Smart Strike). The filly has a weanling half-brother by Catalina Cruiser who was purchased by Tami Bobo's First Finds for $200,000 at last year's Keeneland November sale. Her dam, Private Feeling, who was purchased by SF Bloodstock with the winner in utero for $40,000 at the 2018 Keeneland November sale, was bred back to Tom's d'Etat.

Under the winner's second dam, Regal Feeling, is champion Wait a While.

Sunday, Monmouth
MONMOUTH OAKS-GIII, $245,000, Monmouth, 7-31, 3yo, f, 1 1/16m, 1:41.54, ft.
1–SHAHAMA, 121, f, 3, by Munnings
                1st Dam: Private Feeling, by Belong to Me
                2nd Dam: Regal Feeling, by Clever Trick
                3rd Dam: Sharp Belle, by Native Charger
'TDN Rising Star'. ($425,000 2yo '21 OBSAPR). O-KHK Racing;
B-SF Bloodstock LLC (KY); T-Todd A. Pletcher; J-Jorge A. Vargas,
Jr. $150,000. Lifetime Record: GSW-UAE, 7-5-1-0, $435,984.
*1/2 to Lookin At Lucky (Smart Strike), Ch. 3-year-old Colt, Ch.
2-year-old Colt, MGISW, $3,307,278; 1/2 to Kensei
(Mr. Greeley), MGSW, $751,364. Werk Nick Rating: A+++.
   *Triple Plus* Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Shotgun Hottie, 119, f, 3, Gun Runner–Re Entry, by Malibu
Moon. ($45,000 2yo '21 OBSAPR). O-Omar Aldabbagh & Jeff
Ganje; B-Vincent Colbert (KY); T-William E. Morey. $50,000.
3–Juju's Map, 117, f, 3, Liam's Map–Nagambie, by Flatter.
($190,000 Ylg '20 KEEJAN; $300,000 Ylg '20 KEESEP).
O-Albaugh Family Stables LLC; B-Fred W. Hertrich (KY); T-Brad
Cox. $25,000.
Margins: 2HF, 3/4, 6 1/4. Odds: 1.70, 4.00, 0.90.
Also Ran: Runaway Wife, Office Etiquette. Scratched: Silverleaf.
Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.

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Muhaarar Filly Much the Best in ‘Rising Star’-Worthy Unveiling

Sun, 2022-07-31 14:34

Mike Ryan's Be Your Best (Ire) (Muharaar {GB}–Kamakura, by Medaglia d'Oro) came out swinging Sunday at Saratoga to garner the 'TDN Rising Star' moniker. Let go at 8-1 among a competitive-looking group of juvenile fillies, the Horacio De Paz trainee sat off the pace early and was hung a bit wide around the first bend. She traveled well down the backside, and caught the eye when making a three-wide move around the home bend into a six-furlong split of 1:14.29. Still going strongly out in the enter of the course in upper stretch, she powered away with big strides in the stretch to widen her advantage to 3 1/4 lengths and stop the clock in 1:43.97. Longshot Callie's Grit (Maclean's Music) held off favored Chad Brown-trained firster Free Look (Tapit) for second.

The winner's dam is an unraced full-sister to local dirt stakes winner and GSP Bay of Plenty as well as a half to GISP juvenile Fortify (Distorted Humor). Be Your Best's third dam is the European highweight and U.S. MGISP Flagbird (Nureyev), who produced the dam of GISW Little Belle (A.P. Indy) (in term the dam of Grade I-winning grasser Dickinson {Medaglia d'Oro}) and counted the likes of standouts Prospectors Delite, Runup the Colors and Top Account among her siblings. This is the super deep female family of Mineshaft, Tomisue's Delight, Revolutionary, etc.

2nd-Saratoga, $105,000, Msw, 7-31, 2yo, f, 1 1/16mT, 1:43.97, fm, 3 1/4 lengths.
BE YOUR BEST (IRE), f, 2, Muhaarar {GB}
                1st Dam: Kamakura, by Medaglia d'Oro
                2nd Dam: Kotuku (GB), by A.P. Indy
                3rd Dam: Flagbird, by Nureyev
Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0, $57,750. Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by TVG. Free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree.
O-Michael J. Ryan; B-St. Croix Bloodstock (IRE); T-Horacio De Paz.

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American Pharoah’s American Theorem Takes ‘Win and You’re’ In Bing Crosby

Sat, 2022-07-30 20:54

American Theorem (American Pharoah), a narrow last out winner of the GII Triple Bend S. at Santa Anita May 29, punched his ticket to the GI Breeders' Cup Sprint with an upset victory in the 'Win and You're In' GI Bing Crosby S. at Del Mar.

Away at 7-1 while looking to provide trainer George Papaprodromou with a first Grade I victory, the runner-up in the 2019 GI American Pharoah S. kept the early leaders within his scope from his outside draw in sixth. He ranged up while five-wide rounding the far turn, hit the front at the top of the stretch and was never seriously threatened by the late rally of Get Her Number (Dialed In). Letsgetlucky (Munnings) was third.

A debut winner at two over the Del Mar main track, the gray ended a nine-race losing streak when cutting back in distance for the seven-furlong Triple Bend. He was a well-beaten sixth in both the GII San Pasqual S. and GI Santa Anita H. earlier this year.

Pedigree Notes:

In four North American crops of racing age, Horse of the Year and Coolmore stallion American Pharoah has 14 graded winners among his 27 black-type winners. American Theorem is the newest of his six Grade I winners, joining that highest-level group of As Time Goes By, Harvey's Lil Goil, Van Gogh (in France), Above the Curve (in France), and Cafe Pharoah (in Japan). A number of different broodmare sire lines are represented among American Pharoah's GISWs, with American Theorem his lone black-type winner out of a Maria's Mon mare. The late Maria's Mon, the source of American Theorem's gray coloring, was a sneaky-good sire who was responsible for two GI Kentucky Derby winners and is broodmare sire of 65 stakes winners.

The unraced Mighty Renee has produced five black-type performers out of her seven foals to race, including another Del Mar graded winner in 2011 GIII Sorrento S. victress Mighty Caroline. Her most recent foal is $210,000 Keeneland September yearling Captain Choochies (Classic Empire), an unraced now-2-year-old colt who worked July 28 at Del Mar, getting three panels in :36.60 (6/15). Mighty Renee's dam was also unraced, while her granddam was MGISW Over All (Mr. Prospector). Over All's extended family includes another Mr. Prospector star in Conquistador Cielo, 1982's Horse of the Year.

Saturday, Del Mar
BING CROSBY S.-GI, $402,000, Del Mar, 7-30, 3yo/up, 6f, 1:08.67, ft.
1–AMERICAN THEOREM, 124, r, 5, by American Pharoah
                1st Dam: Mighty Renee, by Maria's Mon
                2nd Dam: Margy, by Theatrical (Ire)
                3rd Dam: Over All, by Mr. Prospector
1ST GRADE I WIN. ($190,000 RNA Ylg '18 KEESEP). O-Kretz
Racing LLC; B-Sierra Farm (KY); T-George Papaprodromou;
J-Joe Bravo. $240,000. Lifetime Record: 12-4-3-0, $531,967.
*1/2 to Viel Spass (Kitten's Joy), SP-Jpn, $336,462; 1/2 to
Mighty Caroline (Stormy Atlantic), GSW, $140,000; 1/2 to
Cyclogenisis (Stormy Atlantic), MSW, $198,750.
Werk Nick Rating: A+++ *Triple Plus*.
   Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Get Her Number, 122, c, 4, Dialed In–Fancier, by Bernstein.
($45,000 2yo '20 OBSAPR). O-Gary Barber; B-Philip & Brenda
Robertson (KY); T-Peter Miller. $80,000.
3–Letsgetlucky, 122, g, 4, Munnings–My Cinsation, by Cindago.
1ST G1 BLACK TYPE. O-Brown, Edward Rusty J., Klein, Alan P.
and Lebherz, Philip; B-Premier Thoroughbreds LLC (CA);
T-Brian J. Koriner. $48,000.
Margins: 1HF, 4 1/4, 3/4. Odds: 7.80, 7.20, 9.40.
Also Ran: Shaaz, Principe Carlo, Drain the Clock, Diamond Oops, Bagboss, Howbeit. Scratched: Desmond Doss. Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.

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Into Mischief Colt the Latest ‘Rising Star’ for Familiar Connections

Sat, 2022-07-30 20:08

Newgate (c, 2, Into Mischief–Majestic Presence, by Majestic Warrior) ran to advanced billing and overwhelming 1-2 odds Saturday at Del Mar to become the latest 'TDN Rising Star' to represent the powerful conglomerate nicknamed The Avengers and an incredible 32nd by Spendthrift Farm's super sire Into Mischief.

Purchased during the opening session of last year's Keeneland September sale for $850,000 and presumably named after Australia's Newgate Farm, the handsome bay was ridden along by Hall of Famer John Velazquez and found only stablemate Hard to Figure (Hard Spun) quicker in the early stages. He continued to require some pedaling to keep up through an opening quarter of :21.78, but was clearly getting the better of Hard to Figure as they neared the straight. He put his rival away for good near a :44.90 half, and was ridden out from there to do it convincingly by 3 1/2 lengths in 1:03.89. Longshot Arrowthegreat (Arrogate) ran past Hard to Figure for second.

The Avengers and Baffert were also responsible for 2020 Horse of the Year Authentic (Into Mischief). Newgate was one of five (and by far the priciest) Into Mischiefs purchased by the group at last year's September sale.

Newgate's dam Majestic Presence was third in her local debut in 2014 over the all-weather behind Baffert-trained 'Rising Star' Luminance (Tale of the Cat), and graduated on the stretch out at second asking. She was fourth in a pair of Grade I events that season and contested the GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies, but had her best black-type finish when third in the GIII Delta Downs Princess behind champion Take Charge Brandi (Giant's Causeway).

Town & Country Horse Farms later acquired Majestic Presence for $360,000 at the 2017 Keeneland November sale in foal to Runhappy. Her 2019 colt, Just Like This (Candy Ride {Arg}), was a $250,000 yearling and aired by 8 1/2 lengths and earned an 85 Beyer Speed Figure when taking a July 15 $20,000 Saratoga maiden claimer out of which he was a voided claim. Newgate has a year-younger full-sister, and a foal half-brother by the aforementioned Authentic. Majestic Presence, a half to GSW Victress (Include) and closely related to GII Summertime Oaks heroine My Majestic Rose (Majestic Warrior), most recently visited Essential Quality.

6th-Del Mar, $82,000, Msw, 7-30, 2yo, 5 1/2f, 1:03.89, ft, 3 1/2 lengths.
NEWGATE, c, 2, Into Mischief
1st Dam: Majestic Presence (GSP-USA, MSP-Can, $227,896), by Majestic Warrior
2nd Dam: Shining Victory, by Victory Gallop
3rd Dam: Phoenix Sunshine, by Encino
Lifetime Record: 1-1-0-0, $48,000. Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by TVG. Free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree.
O-SF Racing LLC, Starlight Racing, Madaket Stables LLC, Masterson, Robert E., Stonestreet Stables LLC, Schoenfarber, Jay A., Waves Edge Capital LLC and Donovan, Catherine; B-Town & Country Horse Farms, LLC (KY); T-Bob Baffert. *$850,000 Ylg '21 KEESEP.

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Epicenter Erupts Late in Jim Dandy

Sat, 2022-07-30 17:58

Even-money favorite EPICENTER (c, 3, Not This Time–Silent Candy, by Candy Ride {Arg}) sat last and didn't look particularly comfortable early in the GII Jim Dandy S., but when Joel Rosario got him going in the stretch, he powered past his three formidable rivals to post a 1 1/2-length victory in 1:48.99. Zandon (Upstart), one spot behind Epicenter in the GI Kentucky Derby when they were second and third to shocking upsetter Rich Strike (Keen Ice), completed the exacta. GIII Ohio Derby winner Tawny Port (Pioneerof the Nile) was third, while GI Preakness S. hero Early Voting (Gun Runner) dropped back to last after setting the pace. Epicenter had last been seen finishing second in the May 21 Preakness after a rough trip and much-talked-about patient ride from Joel Rosario, who was celebrating back-to-back stakes victories Saturday aboard Steve Asmussen trainees after piloting Jackie's Warrior (Maclean's Music) in the GI Alfred G. Vanderbilt H. Sales history: $260,000 ylg '20 KEESEP. O-Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC. B-Westwind Farms (Ky). T-Steve Asmussen.

Saturday, Saratoga
JIM DANDY S.-GII, $558,000, Saratoga, 7-30, 3yo, 1 1/8m, 1:48.99, ft.
1–EPICENTER, 122, c, 3, by Not This Time
1st Dam: Silent Candy (SW & GSP, $182,208), by Candy Ride (Arg)
                2nd Dam: Silent Queen, by King of Kings (Ire)
                3rd Dam: Soundproof (Ire), by Ela-Mana-Mou (Ire)
($260,000 Ylg '20 KEESEP). O-Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC;
B-Westwind Farms (KY); T-Steven M. Asmussen; J-Joel Rosario.
$330,000. Lifetime Record: 9-5-3-0, $2,270,639. Werk Nick
   Rating: A++. Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Zandon, 124, c, 3, Upstart–Memories Prevail, by Creative
Cause. ($170,000 Ylg '20 KEESEP). O-Jeff Drown; B-Brereton C.
Jones (KY); T-Chad C. Brown. $120,000.
3–Tawny Port, 120, c, 3, Pioneerof the Nile–Livi Makenzie, by
Macho Uno. ($430,000 Ylg '20 KEESEP). O-Peachtree Stable;
B-WinStar Farm, LLC (KY); T-Brad H. Cox. $72,000.
Margins: 1HF, HF, 1 3/4. Odds: 1.10, 2.70, 8.70.
Also Ran: Early Voting. Scratched: Western River. Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.

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Jackie’s Warrior Makes History in Vanderbilt

Sat, 2022-07-30 17:14

Champion sprinter Jackie's Warrior (Maclean's Music) made history in jaw-dropping fashion in the GI Alfred G. Vanderbilt H. at Saratoga Saturday, becoming the first horse to win Grade I races in three consecutive seasons at the upstate New York track.

The exceptionally fast 1-5 favorite backed off after leading in the early stages and let 22-1 outsider Doc Amster (Midshipman) set the pace. Guided to the outside of that overmatched rival by Joel Rosario, the $95,000 KEESEP yearling graduate cruised up with devastating ease to hit the front approaching the quarter pole.

Kept well out in the clear at the top of the stretch, Jackie's Warrior simply cantered home under a hammer lock to dominate by a deceptive two lengths. Kneedeepinsnow (Flat Out), a savvy $80,000 claim back in April, ran on well to complete the exacta.

Jackie's Warrior, now five-for-five at Saratoga, won the GI Runhappy Hopeful S. at two and a memorable throwdown over the brilliant Life Is Good (Into Mischief) in last summer's GI H. Allen Jerkens Memorial S.

“Unbelievably relieved,” winning Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen said. “I was made aware that if he wins today, he's the only horse ever to win a Grade I three years in a row at Saratoga. Saratoga–the great racehorses that have won here and he's the only one to do that. I just can't say how much I have wanted that for him and am proud of it and Jackie's Warrior has done it.”

He continued, “He's the whole package. He just has a tremendous amount of ability and confidence in himself. A game horse.”

A disappointing sixth as the heavy favorite in last November's GI Breeders' Cup Sprint, the J. Kirk and Judy Robison colorbearer has been perfect in four attempts since having a knee chip removed ahead of his 4-year-old season.

His 2022 campaign also includes wins in the GI Churchill Downs S. May 7 and GII True North S. at Belmont last time June 10. The GI Forego S. at Saratoga Aug. 27 will be next.

“We've mapped out his races this year when he came back in training,” Asmussen said. “We expect to run him back here in the Forego and the Breeders' Cup Sprint [in November at Keeneland]. Those will be his last two races and then he is off to Spendthrift for his stud career.”

Pedigree Notes:

A sole North American crop for U.S. MGSP and Chilean sire A. P. Five Hundred led to the birth of hard-knocking 19-time winner Unicorn Girl, who brought $45,000 as an OBS 2-year-old in 2007. The next time the hammer fell on an official sale for her was in 2020 at Keeneland November, when her price was upped–as the dam of Jackie's Warrior, at that time a MGISW 2-year-old colt–to $850,000 from buyer Arthur Hoyeau. Unicorn Girl didn't have a 2021 foal, but produced a Mar. 18 filly by Into Mischief this year and has been bred back to Quality Road. Her 2-year-old American Pharoah colt, who brought $600,000 at the 2020 Keeneland November sale from M.V. Magnier, has not been named but is nearing a race, having last worked at Saratoga July 24, getting five furlongs in 1:00.25 (2/27). Jackie's Warrior is currently the only U.S. black-type winner out of a daughter of A. P. Five Hundred, although his daughters have also produced two Chilean stakes winners.

Hill 'n' Dale's Maclean's Music, who made the most of his one career race start with a 114 Beyer for the win, has 25 black-type winners from his seven crops of racing age. Jackie's Warrior is one of his six graded winners and one of his four Grade I winners. The powerful nick of Maclean's Music's sire, Distorted Humor, over A. P. Five Hundred's sire, A.P. Indy, is well recognized and both Jackie's Warrior and Maclean's Music's GI Preakness S. winner Cloud Computing follow that formula.

Saturday, Saratoga
ALFRED G. VANDERBILT H.-GI, $350,000, Saratoga, 7-30, 3yo/up, 6f, 1:09.74, ft.
1–JACKIE'S WARRIOR, 127, c, 4, by Maclean's Music
                1st Dam: Unicorn Girl, by A. P. Five Hundred
                2nd Dam: Horah for Bailey, by Doneraile Court
                3rd Dam: Horah for the Lady, by Rahy
($95,000 Ylg '19 KEESEP). O-J. Kirk & Judy Robison; B-J & J
Stables (KY); T-Steven M. Asmussen; J-Joel Rosario. $192,500.
Lifetime Record: Ch. Male Sprinter, 16-12-1-1, $2,667,164.
Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree. Werk Nick
Rating: A+++. *Triple Plus*
2–Kneedeepinsnow, 117, g, 6, Flat Out–Michelleinhearts, by
Lion Heart. 1ST GRADED BLACK TYPE, 1ST G1 BLACK TYPE.
($42,000 Wlg '16 KEENOV; $130,000 Ylg '17 KEESEP). O-Jeremy
Sussman, Ten Strike Racing & Cory Moelis Racing LLC; B-BWB
Bloodstock, LLC & WDS Bloodstock (KY); T-Matt A. Shirer.
$70,000.
3–Willy Boi, 120, g, 4, Uncaptured–Shining Moment, by
Yes It's True. 1ST G1 BLACK TYPE. ($40,000 2yo '20 OBSOCT).
O-Bill Cosgrove; B-Ocala Stud & William J. Terrell (FL); T-Jorge
Delgado. $42,000.
Margins: 2, 3, 1. Odds: 0.25, 22.40, 8.00.
Also Ran: Ny Traffic, Doc Amster, Long Range Toddy.
Click for the Equibase.com chart, the TJCIS.com PPs or the free Equineline.com catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.

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Sharp Azteca Colt Ships East, Dominates Tyro

Sat, 2022-07-30 14:36

SHARP AZA TACK (c, 2, Sharp Azteca–Que Chulo, by Bernardini) took his show across the country Saturday and couldn't have been any more impressive while becoming the second stakes winner for his fast-starting freshman sire (by Freud) in Monmouth's Tyro S. Having belied 12-1 odds when scoring first out on the Santa Anita sod June 10, the :10 flat OBSMAR breezer was no secret this time around as the even-money chalk.

Briefly challenged to his inside by second choice Power Attack (War Dancer), Sharp Aza Tack shook free of that foe on the bend and enjoyed several lengths of daylight as he spun for home. His foes simply couldn't run with him from there, and he widened at will to prevail by double digits and stop the clock in :55.71. Power Attack held second.

“I decided to ship the horse to Monmouth Park after talking to owner Ron Arakelian,” winning trainer Dennis O'Neill said. “We circled the Global Tote Juvenile Sprint at Kentucky Downs [Sept. 8] for him and we thought `what is a good spot between the win at Santa Anita and the Kentucky Downs race?' The race at Monmouth Park was perfect. I have horses at Keeneland now and we thought the Tyro S. would be a good middle ground.”

He continued, “When he made his debut he had trained well but I didn't know if he was good enough to stay with some of the top baby sprinters on the dirt in California. We put him in that grass sprint and I would be lying if I didn't say I was shocked at how well he raced. He came out of it great, so why would we mess around with surfaces? The only thing we said to [jockey] Jairo Rendon was to take advantage of this horse's speed. He rode him with a lot of confidence. There were some good runners in there. I couldn't have been more impressed or more proud of the way he ran. It's hard to be more impressive than he was.”

The winner's dam was purchased for just $7,000 at the 2016 Fasig-Tipton New York Fall Mixed sale while in foal to Emcee. Out of an Argentinian Group 1 winner, Que Chulo has a yearling filly by Jimmy Creed, a Good Magic foal colt and was bred to Beau Liam for 2023. Click for the Equibase.com chart or VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.

TYRO S., $102,000, Monmouth, 7-30, 2yo, 5fT, :55.71, fm.
1–SHARP AZA TACK, 117, c, 2, by Sharp Azteca
                1st Dam: Que Chulo, by Bernardini
                2nd Dam: Que Piensa Cat (Arg), by Easing Along
                3rd Dam: Compenetrada (Arg), by Compatible (Arg)
($72,000 Ylg '21 KEESEP; $100,000 2yo '22 OBSMAR). 1ST BLACK TYPE WIN. O-R3 Racing LLC; B-Joe & Emily Cowles (KY); T-Doug F. O'Neill; J-Jairo Rendon. $60,000. Lifetime Record: 2-2-0-0, $100,200.
2–Power Attack, 118, c, 2, War Dancer–Street Magic, by Street Hero. ($20,000 Ylg '21 EASOCT). 1ST BLACK TYPE. O-Tee-N-Jay Farm and J. Kent Sweezey; B-Sean O'Connor (NY); T-J. Kent Sweezey. $20,000.
3–Bart's Dream, 118, c, 2, Chitu–Gator Brew, by Milwaukee Brew. ($37,000 2yo '22 OBSMAR). 1ST BLACK TYPE. O-Sonata Stable; B-James Gamble (FL); T-Jose Francisco D'Angelo. $10,000.
Margins: 7 1/4, 1 3/4, 2HF. Odds: 1.00, 2.30, 8.60.
Also Ran: Jeremy's Jet, Ferrari Kid, Dangerous Ride, Run Happy Pappy.

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