NEWS: racing

Dreamsgonewild upsets Laurel Dash in speedy stakes debut

Sunday, September 28th, 2014
©Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club

©Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club

By Sarah Mace

Paul M. Steckel’s Dreamsgonewild upset the overflow field of the $100,000 Laurel Dash, including the venerable Ben’s Cat, in his stakes debut for trainer Bruce Alexander at Laurel Park on Saturday afternoon. A 5-year-old gelding by Freud, Dreamsgonewild covered the 6-furlong distance over the firm Laurel turf in 1:07.99, just .70 seconds off the course record of 1:07.29.

Drawn in the outside post of ten, Dreamsgonewild (7-1) got out of the gate in good order, and used his early foot to establish himself in a stalking position a length or so off pacesetter Bold Thunder. King Leatherbury’s 8-year-old homebred Ben’s Cat, a $2 million-earner and looking for his third victory in the Laurel Dash in four years, set up shop in third.

Dreamsgonewild held his position down the backstretch and around the far turn, but still had 1 1/2 lengths to make up at the top of the stretch. When he came under a drive, he answered the call, closing on Bold Thunder. He took over the top spot in the final stages and rode the momentum to a three-quarter-length victory. Ben’s Cat, finished a game third, a neck behind runner-up Bold Thunder.

A seven-time winner in 22 races, Dreamsgonewild has taken a trip to the winner’s circle after four of his last five starts, but has found most success in shorter turf sprints. Said, 20-year-old jockey Trevor McCarthy, who won three races on the day’s card, “We were going farther today than usual so my instructions were to take the lead if we could get it. If not, stay just off. He didn’t get the lead so I stayed just off and we didn’t have any trouble in the race.”

Continued McCarthy, “He had a lot left in the last eighth but I didn’t think I would get by the four. As we approached the wire, the four [Bold Thunder] got a little tired and my horse started to dig back in. Ben’s Cat, coming on the outside also helped to push us along. We were able to get up.”

Bruce Alexander, who purchased Dreamsgonewild for $22,000 out of the 2010 OBS select yearling sale, celebrated his biggest victory as a trainer by saying, “This will pay for a lot of groceries. The four was in front but we didn’t want to be chasing him the whole way. Then my rider heard Ben’s Cat coming and the horse pinned his ears back and won.”

Alexander also focused on the young jockey’s ride, with good reason. “I’m Trevor’s great uncle,” Alexander said. “He rode a perfect race. I think I was riding as hard as Trevor was. I think he’s going to be one of the premier riders in the country. Very disciplined for a young kid.”

Bred by Ed and Diane Gregory’s Carapan Farm LLC, Dreamsgonewild is the first black type winner out of Twin Stroller, a winning Ontario-bred daughter of Strolling Along who has been a solid producer since being purchased by Carapan for just $5,500 at the OBS Fall mixed sale in 2001, producing no fewer than five winners from five foals to start.

Although Dreamsgonewild is her most successful offspring to date, with $326,828 in earnings, her first foal, Island Reversal (Tactical Advantage) also earned six figures. She has also produced a 3-year-old full brother to Dreamsgonewild, who has not yet started.


Temper Mint Patty runs away with Joseph A. Gimma

Sunday, September 21st, 2014
NYRA/Adam Coglianese

NYRA/Adam Coglianese

By Sarah Mace

Temper Mint Patty (Congrats), impressive off-the-pace neck winner of her Spa debut over a dry track on August 29, absolutely romped second out over muddy going at Belmont to take the $150,000 Joseph A. Gimma for New York-bred juvenile fillies.

Trained by Dale Romans for Mark Stanley, and stretching out from six to seven furlongs, Temper Mint Patty got away well from her inside post, and traveled in third as Broman homebred Hard to Stay Notgo led the way through fractions of 22.22 and 45.45, a half-length ahead of Seeking the Ante winner Myfourchix.

Advancing into second in the far turn, but still with 2 1/2 lengths to make up on Hard to Stay Notgo, Temper Mint Patty made a decisive move at the rail, grabbed the lead just shy of the quarter pole and proceeded to open up by as much as she wished, in the event by 13 1/2 lengths. The final time over the sloppy (sealed) main track was 1:23.78, nearly a second faster than the winner of the co-featured Bertram Bongard two races earlier. [VIDEO]

Pilot Irad Ortiz, Jr. focused his decision to zip up the fence. “The horse in front of me tried to get out bad, said Ortiz. “I had some horse and I took a chance, and when I asked her she went right through. I think she can go further, too. She’s all right.”

Originally purchased by Becky Thomas as a yearling at the 2013 Fasig-Tipton New York-bred preferred sale for $30,000, Temper Mint Patty was purchased by Mark Stanley at the Fasig-Tipton Florida sale this March for $95,000 after posting a one-furlong work in 10.0 seconds.

Stanley explained the transaction. “I like [her sire] Congrats a lot; I think he’s very underrated, said Stanley. “The main thing is, Becky Thomas, who consigned [Temper Mint Patty] in the 2-year-old sale, had a lot of confidence in her, and she actually bought her back in the sale. I went and talked to her after, and she was high on her. She’s a pretty filly, so we felt like she was worth the money. She’s been a lot of fun so far.”

Stanley is also a man with a dream.  “I thought in the first race she showed a lot of talent, but she matured before this one in just three weeks. Hopefully before the first Friday in May she’ll be even better. Friday [Kentucky Oaks], not Saturday.”

Bred by Gallagher’s Stud in Ghent where she was foaled on May 8, 2012, Temper Mint Patty is one of two winners out of stakes-winning turf router His Beauty, a Gallagher homebred, who is the daughter of graded stakes winner and $435,597-earner Adcat, also a product of Gallagher’s breeding.

His Beauty, who issues from the family of Deja, a multiple turf stakes winner in France, produced a weanling colt in February by New York-based sire Dublin and was bred this year to Mad Flatter.


Saratoga Heater splashes home a dominant winner of Bertram F. Bongard

Sunday, September 21st, 2014
NYRA/Adam Coglianese

NYRA/Adam Coglianese

By Sarah Mace

Saratoga Heater became a stakes winner in his third career start, chalking up a handy frontrunning victory at Belmont Park on Sunday afternoon over a competitive field in the $150,000 Bertram F. Bongard for New York-bred juveniles at seven furlongs.

Breaking slightly inward from his inside post, but out of harm’s way, Saratoga Heater immediately got his feet under him and engaged Banana Thief in a brief tussle for the lead, coming away in front and quickly opening up two lengths on the field.

Preserving a comfortable margin to his nearest rival, Pletcher-trained Bullheaded Boy, Saratoga Heater carried on unchallenged along the backstretch and around the far turn. He progressed to the finish line under a vigorous hand ride with a single left-handed reminder and won by a margin of four lengths.

NYRA/Chelsea Durand

NYRA/Chelsea Durand

Bullheaded Boy finished second, followed across the line a length back by Market Conduct. Next in order were longshot Chloe’s Wonderboy and Banana Thief, followed in last by Tizquick, who stumbled at the start, rushed up into contention and faded late. After a sharp first half mile in 45.67, the final time for the seven furlongs over muddy (sealed) main track was 1:24.63. [VIDEO]

Winning rider Joel Rosario, Saratoga Heater’s third pilot in as many starts, said, “I thought I would be a little bit off the pace, since he came from way off the pace last time. He was really sharp today and broke on top. I let him be happy and cruise along. He took me all the way, so it was a good race for him. It didn’t seem anyone was trying to go with me, so that was good, too.”

A colt by freshman sire Temple City (a son of Dynaformer out of a Danzig mare), Saratoga Heater has made all three starts over sloppy going. After debuting a sixth-place finisher at Saratoga on July 31 behind debut winner Bullheaded Boy, he improved by leaps and bounds second out with blinkers added, breaking his maiden by 2 1/4 lengths in a ten-horse field from off the pace going six furlongs on July 31. Trained by Al Stall, Jr. for his first pair of starts, the colt is now in the hands of Lisa Lewis, who trains for P R Racing.

Lewis said, “I know [his former connections] were very high on Saratoga Heater, and when we got him there was nothing that we didn’t like about him. He’s done everything right; he had a beautiful breeze here the other day. I was quietly confident going into this race.”

Explaining why she has added P R Racing to longtime client William Schettine, Lewis said, “I’ve trained privately for Mr. Schettine [of Signature Stallions] for almost five years now and we’ve had a really good run. I still train for him, but he’s cutting back a little bit and I just wanted an opportunity to get some more young horses. For me, that’s where it’s at, trying to get a good, young horse, so here we are.”

Foaled on February 6, 2012 at Hidden Lake Farm in Otisville, Saratoga Heater is the first starter out of Hot Spell a stakes-placed sprinter by Salt Lake, whose second dam is a Group 3 turf winner in France, Relasure. The colt sold first as a yearling for $30,000 at the Fasig-Tipton Saratoga New York-bred preferred sale before going to Stewart Madison for $100,000 at the OBS Springs sale in April after working an eighth of a mile in 10.2 seconds.


“Artemis” overcomes slow start, overland route to lead NY-bred trifecta in G2 Gallant Bloom

Saturday, September 20th, 2014
NYRA/Adam Coglianese

NYRA/Adam Coglianese

By Sarah Mace

Chester and Mary Broman’s 3-year-old homebred Artemis Agrotera, dominant winner of the Grade 1 Ballerina at Saratoga after a pace-pressing journey, captured the Grade 2, $300,000 Gallant Bloom Handicap at Belmont Park on Saturday with an entirely different kind of trip, closing from well back and getting up just in time to catch fellow New York-bred La Verdad at the wire. Willet finished with power to complete an Empire-bred trifecta.

In 2013 New York-bred Horse of the Year Cluster of Stars, undefeated in seven starts, paved the way by winning last year’s Gallant Bloom in her penultimate race.

Artemis Agrotera already has an appointment with the starter for the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint at Santa Anita Park by virtue of her Ballerina “Win & You’re In” victory, but trainer Mike Hushion opted for an interim race rather than training right though. “When she has good energy, that’s when she has performed well,” said Hushion. “I thought running in the [Gallant Bloom] would be better for her.”

Exiting the gate as the 2-5 popular choice, Artemis Agrotera must have given her backers pause when she seemed outrun early and settled back in fifth more than nine lengths off the pace, trailed only by confirmed closer Willet. Meanwhile, Ballerina pacesetter La Verdad absolutely shot out of the gate from her outside post, cleared the field and blazed though a testing first quarter mile of 21.61.

NYRA/Chelsea Durand

NYRA/Chelsea Durand

Making a widest-of-all bid in the far turn five paths out, in tandem with Willet who moved off the rail into the the four path, Artemis Agrotera set her sights on La Verdad, who still enjoyed an four-length lead at the top of the stretch. Finding her best stride in upper stretch and charging home with determination in the final furlong, the talented filly just got her head in front of La Verdad at the wire. Willet finished third only another length back. After six panels in a testing 1:08.70, the final time for six and a half furlongs over the fast track was 1:15.49.

According to Trakus, “Artemis” traveled farther than any filly or mare in the field, 28 feet farther than La Verdad and 24 feet further than Willet, who enjoyed a groundsaving trip in the early stages. [VIDEO]

Rajiv Maragh, who rode Artemis Agrotera first in the Ballerina said that his mount was not comfortable with the way the race unfolded. “She really didn’t enjoy being that far back. Early on, I tried to keep her in her rhythm. I had a lot of confidence in her and tried to be a good passenger and let her finish strong.”

Continued Maragh, “I assumed they were going that fast [a half mile in 43.78] because my filly is naturally quick, and if she’s 10 lengths off the lead, La Verdad had to be going fast to be that far in front of her. In the stretch, my filly found a second wind and a third wind. Even if she had run second or third it would have been a good performance. It shows what kind of filly she is to get up and win the race from where she was.”

Trainer Mike Hushion credited Maragh with adept handling of the unforeseen developments. “I didn’t expect [Artemis Agrotera to be that far back]. I did something very smart: I didn’t say anything to Rajiv. He’s riding like that – he’s making all the right decisions. I’d hate to have him think I wanted something, and he made a great decision here.”

Jose Ortiz lavished praise on the runner-up effort of his mount La Verdad, who had struggled at the Spa. “She ran two disappointing races in Saratoga. Today, she ran 110 percent. [Trainer] Linda [Rice] had her ready, and she ran her race. She went at a good pace and kept running. What can I say? Artemis Agrotera is a very nice filly, too.”

Rice who conditions La Verdad for Lady Sheila Stable, said, “We talked about it in the paddock. I said, ‘Go to the lead if you can; if you break a step slow and have to stalk the other one, do it.’ We just had to get her back in the game and let her run her race. The 43-[second] half might have got us beat at the wire, and that’s a very nice filly who beat her. I thought she ran great. We’re proud of her.”

Artemis Agrotera, who stalked and pounced to win the Grade 1 Frizette last fall at Belmont in just her second career start made the third and final start of her juvenile campaign with a tough-trip fifth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies. Returning to the races this year in June, she disappointed in the Grade 1 Acorn, finishing eighth, but regained her form and, perhaps, her confidence with a romp in a state-bred allowance at Saratoga on July 23 before putting together back-to-back graded victories in the Ballerina and Gallant Bloom.

Hushion said, “Now we have six weeks [to the Breeders' Cup]. We can take our time. She has this under her belt. Like Rajiv said, he learned a lot about her today.”

Artemis Agrotera has five wins from seven starts and earned $943,800. She is out of Indy Glory by A.P. Indy, also bred and campaigned by the Bromans. A full sister to Grade 1 winner, millionaire and sire Stephen Got Even and to stakes winner Grand Merger, Indy Glory is a stakes-winning router with multiple graded placings ($283,422).

Indy Glory’s four winners include stakes-placed Time Squared by Fusaichi Pegasus, who brought $1.05 million at the 2006 Keeneland April sale of 2-year-olds, and stakes-placed Submerge, a filly by the same sire. Indy Glory, who not had a foal since “Artemis,” was bred to Pioneerof the Nile this year. The Bromans purchased Indy Glory’s dam Immerse (Cox’s Ridge) at the 1997 Keeneland November sale for $350,000.


In-form Invading Humor fights back to gain Hettinger victory

Sunday, September 14th, 2014
NYRA/Adam Coglianese

NYRA/Adam Coglianese

by Sarah Mace

Invading Humor, a 4-year-old daughter of Invasor (Arg), made a memorable stakes debut in the $125,000 John Hettinger, contesting the pace from the bell and fighting to regain the lead after being headed in upper stretch to secure her fourth consecutive victory. The Hettinger is the filly and mare division of a pair of 1 1/8-mile turf contests for New York-breds co-featured on Belmont’s Sunday card.

Trained by Bruce Levine for Bloodline Racing Partnerships, Invading Humor cleared her second New York-bred allowance condition at Belmont in July going six furlongs on turf. Stretching out progressively in a pair of races three weeks apart in Saratoga, the dark bay filly took a one-mile conditioned state-bred allowance on August 4 and a 1 1/16 mile open allowance on August 23, racing on or near the lead both times.

Partnered with Rajiv Maragh for her stakes debut, 5-1 Invading Humor broke sharply from the outside post and entered the clubhouse turn three wide. She was able to move in one path after the battle for the lead narrowed down to her and 16-1 Princess Mara. The two contested the top spot for the length of the backstretch, tracked in third and fourth by 3-5 favorite Effie Trinket and Mah Jong Maddnes.

NYRA/Adam Coglianese

NYRA/Adam Coglianese

Invading Humor edged clear exiting the far turn, but was headed in upper stretch by Effie Trinket and Mah Jong Maddnes who bid in tandem. Invading Humor fought back with determination at the rail, regained the lead and went on to win by one length while holding held off a late run from Broman homebred Strike Accord. The 40-1 longshot came barreling down the center of the track to get up for second over Effie Trinket. Completing the order of finish were Selenite, Dreaming of Cara, Frosty Bay, Stock Fund, Mah Jong Maddnes and Princess Mara. The final time for nine furlongs over the “good” inner turf course was 1:49.47.  [VIDEO]

Winning jockey Rajiv Maragh said, “I didn’t ask her until I got to the stretch. I thought I still had horse, but until you let them loose you never know. When I asked her to run, she just sprinted away. I hadn’t ridden her in a while, but I won on her going a mile. This was only a furlong more, and I thought she could handle it. Even through the wire, she kept on going.”

NYRA/Adam Coglianese

NYRA/Adam Coglianese

A delighted Bruce Levine said, “She’s really been a little bit of a surprise. She’s overachieved this year. She’s got a big heart and is as game as they come. I was a little nervous when the other two went outside them [Effie Trinket and Mah Jong Maddnes], but she’s a fighter. But when she dug in and they straightened out, I knew she had more.

A winner of six races, with one second and a third from twelve career starts and $303,700-earner, Invading Humor was bred by Dr. James Randall Mcglinn, breeder and General Manager, of Bloodlines Racing Partnerships, which primarily campaigns registered New York- and Pennsylvania-breds.

Foaled at Sickle Pond Farm in Stillwater, Invading Humor is the first foal out of Very Funny, a placed Kentucky-bred daughter of Distorted Humor purchased by Mcglinn at the 2009 Keeneland January sale for $16,000. A New York-bred full sister Distorted Beauty has a win and two seconds from three starts and has earned over $138,000. The mare currently has a yearling filly and weanling filly both by Freud.

Levine plans to bring Invading Humor back in the $150,000 Iroquois on Empire Showcase Day (October 18).


Lubash turns tables on King Kreesa in stirring Ashley T. Cole

Sunday, September 14th, 2014
NYRA/Adam Coglianese

NYRA/Adam Coglianese

by Sarah Mace

Aliyu Ben J Stables’ seven-year-old homebred Lubash (Freud), the elder statesman in the battle of the New York-bred turf Titans at Belmont Park on Sunday – aka the $125,000 Ashley T. Cole – avenged his head loss to King Kreesa at the Spa in the August 24 West Point by running down his rival in deep stretch to secure a narrow victory from off the pace.

The win was Lubash’s second Cole win, seventh stakes tally and eleventh career victory. With his $75,000 share of the purse he boosted his earnings yet nearer to the $1 million dollar threshold: $911,079.

Lubash, the 2-1 second choice, settled early in the back of the five-horse field and enjoyed a groundsaving trip four lengths off the pace while King Kreesa, the 7-5 favorite, flashed his customary speed, securing both the lead and rail before entering the clubhouse turn,

Unhurried along the backstretch while Kharafa pressed King Kreesa up front, Lubash started to gear up around the far turn and came off the rail.

NYRA/Adam Coglianese

NYRA/Adam Coglianese

Angling out at the top of the stretch, Lubash turned all business, pinning his ears, making up ground and passing Kharafa in midstretch. He then set about eroding King Kreesa’s lead. The two raced briefly in tandem, before Lubash edged ahead to get the win by neck. The final time for 1 1/8 miles over the “good” Belmont inner turf course was 1:47.82. The game King Kreesa crossed the line 2 3/4 lengths clear of Kharafa in third. Completing the order of finish were Front and Notacatbutallama. [VIDEO]

Junior Alvarado, Lubash’s regular rider since his close runner-up finish to Kharafa in last year’s Ashley T. Cole, said, “He’s such a good horse. He might not win every time, but he always shows up. When I turned for home and saw it was [King Kreesa] ahead of me, I thought, ‘Oh, no, I have to catch that one?’ But he tried his best like always and came through.”

Trainer Christophe Clement added, with a nod to the quality of the competition, “He’s a sound horse and he tries very hard. Junior has a good relationship with the horse; he knows him inside out. This is fun. This is a very good group of New York-bred turf horses. King Kreesa and Kharafa are always tough.”

Astonishingly, Kharafa dipped into the claiming ranks to break his maiden, airing second out among statebreds for $35,000 at Aqueduct in late March 2010. After an allowance win in his turf debut at Belmont in May, he next visited the winner’s circle that summer after the NYSS Cab Calloway at Saratoga. Since then he has raced almost exclusively in stakes company, taking the open Fifth Marine next out and placing in three stakes at four, including a third in the lucrative President’s Cup at Parx.

After racing at three and four for James Ryerson, Lubash moved to the Clement Barn in 2012. In 20 starts for team Clement Lubash has won six races, including the West Point, Ashley T. Cole twice and Grade 3 Fort Marcy. He has been sharp this year, with a record of three wins and two seconds from five starts.

Foaled at Carapan Farm, Lubash is the most successful offspring of Nasty Cure, a stakes-placed daughter of Cure the Blues ($153,122), who has produced five multiple winners including stakes-placed New York-bred Netcong by Meadow Flight, who started 87 times and banked $327,924.


Delaware-loving Galiana romps in slop to take second Tax-Free Shopping Distaff

Saturday, September 13th, 2014
© 2014 Hoofprints, Inc.

© 2014 Hoofprints, Inc.

by Sarah Mace

Owner/trainer Rodolfo Romero’s Galiana, a 4-year-old daughter of Stonesider (Saratoga Stud, LLC), once again proved her affinity for Delaware Park on Saturday afternoon – whether the going be fast, good or sloppy – by recording her second consecutive victory in the $75,000 Tax-Free Shopping Distaff by eight-plus lengths.

Galiana came into the Tax-Free Shopping Distaff with a record of five wins from six career starts at Delaware Park, including her debut maiden breaker over off going in her first start in June 2013. She went on to win last year’s Tax-Free Shopping Distaff and, in June and July of this year, the Dashing Beauty Stakes and Sweet and Sassy Stakes. Galiana could also boast four wins from six starts at the six furlong distance of Saturday’s contest and four of five tallies over Saturday’s off conditions. The filly was partnered for the first time with apprentice rider Michael Ritvo, who moved his tack from Gulfstream Park to the mid-Atlantic last week and recorded a victory on his first mount in Maryland on Friday afternoon.

Up close to the pace in third in the early stages of the race, Galiana took over the top spot entering the far turn. After a half mile in 46.09 and firmly in command, the filly just kept improving her position, opening up on the competition first by five lengths before going on to win by 8 1/2. She stopped the clock after six furlongs over the sloppy (sealed) going at 1:11.03.

Galiana, who improved her career record to nine wins, one second and two thirds from 19 starts and boosted her earnings to a robust $345,446, was bred by John T. Behrendt and Charles Marquis and foaled at Anne Morgan and Tim Little’s Mill Creek Farm in Stillwater. Galiana is the only North American winner to date out of Baby Jess, an unraced Argentinian-bred daughter of Interprete (ARG).


Lady Finger Stakes Dominated by Contessa

Saturday, September 6th, 2014
SV Photography

SV Photography

By Dave Mattice

FARMINGTON, N.Y. – A field of 14 New York-bred 2-year-old fillies started from the gate in the $141,675 Lady Finger Stakes at Finger Lakes Gaming and Racetrack on Saturday. The event concluded with a photo finish between stablemates from the the same barn. Dunn Listening caught Evrybdymstgetstonz at the wire to secure a successful exacta sweep for trainer Gary Contessa.

Evrybdymstgetstonz set the early pace of the expensive dash and led by a large margin in the late stages. Dunn Listening rallied in the stretch to catch her rival and earned the fourth race victory by a head. She was guided to the narrow triumph by Angel Arroyo in a six furlong time of 1:12.73.

SV Photography

SV Photography

The $88,655 earner owned by John Moriana, Monty Foss and Steven Wrecker registered her first victory in her second career start and paid $17.40, $6.70 and $3.80. Evrybdymstgetstonz was a game second and returned $6.20 and $4.20. Irish Heroine finished third and paid $3.30. The Contessa exacta (13-7) paid $127.50 for a $2.00 wager.

.


Tiz Time to Shine glows in Aspirant Stakes

Saturday, September 6th, 2014
SV Photography

SV Photography

By Dave Mattice

Tiz Time to Shine was a popular winner of the $127,063 Aspirant Stakes. The 1-4 post time favorite scored a three-quarter length victory in the six furlong sprint for New York-bred 2-year-olds.

The Chad Brown-trainee completed the seventh race in a time of 1:13.31 under jockey Jaime Rodriguez. The bay colt owned by Blue Bison Stable and Hoffman Thoroughbreds improved his lifetime earnings to a sum of $90,838 and paid $2.70, $2.30 and $2.10. Summer Brother was second and returned $3.30 and $3.00. DeputyBustersone was third and paid $2.90.

SV Photography

SV Photography

The Aspirant Stakes and the Lady Finger Stakes are held annually as preparation races for the New York Breeders’ Futurity. The Futurity is a six furlong sprint for New York-bred 2-year-olds with an estimated purse of $200,000. The rich event is one of three stakes scheduled to be run on Saturday, October 4. The $50,000 Leon Reed Memorial and the $50,000 Arctic Queen will also be part of the card.

Palace sensational in Forego, collects second straight Spa G1

Saturday, August 30th, 2014
NYRA/Adam Coglianese

NYRA/Adam Coglianese

by Sarah Mace

Not content with carrying off just one Grade 1 prize from the current Saratoga meet with his victory in the Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap on August 2, Antonio Miuccio’s former claimer Palace doubled the glory on the final Saturday of racing, sitting off a hot pace in the $500,000 Forego Stakes before drawing off to a powerful open-length victory for trainer Linda Rice. The victory in one of the Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In” races guarantees the 5-year-old son of City Zip a place in the starting gate for Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Sprint.

Partnered again with regular rider Cornelio Velasquez and stretching out from the six-furlong Vanderbilt to seven panels, 4-1 second choice Palace sat off a the pace in third for the first half-mile, while longshot Zee Bros set taxing fractions of 22.48 and 45.23.

NYRA/Chelsea Durand

NYRA/Chelsea Durand

When Zee Bros came off the rail at the head of the stretch, Palace dove inside, rallied powerfully and took over with a furlong to go. He drew off to a dominant 3 1/2-length victory. Fellow New York-bred Big Business completed the exacta under Junior Alvarado for trainer David Jacobson and owner Gary Barber at odds of 20-1. Vyjack finished third. The final time for seven furlongs was an eye-catching 1:21.95. [VIDEO]

Jockey Cornelio Velasquez said, “I wanted to break good and stay in good position behind the speed. I had a lot of horse. When the opening came, I was in good position. I think my horse is the best sprinting horse now.”

Linda Rice addressed her decision to run Palace in the Forego at seven furlongs, possibly not his preferred distance, after considering waiting for the Grade 1 Vosburgh at Belmont Park on September 27.

“[Palace] is a really talented horse, and when he is good I need to use him,” Rice said. “On several occasions I’ve needed to stop on him, turn him out, and give him a break. When a horse is doing as well as he is, I don’t know how long I can keep him that good.”

Added Rice, “He’s such a special horse, and [owner Antonino] Miuccio has allowed me to stop on him, turn him out, and give him a break whenever he needs it, and it’s obviously paid off.”

NYRA/Adam Coglianese

NYRA/Adam Coglianese

Rice claimed Palace from Bill Mott and WinStar Farm for $20,000 out of a maiden-breaking 11 3/4-length romp on October 6, 2012. Since then Palace has won nine races including six stakes. He followed up a win in the Chowder’s First Stakes for New York-bred sprinters in his stakes debut last August at Saratoga with a victory in the Hudson Handicap on Showcase day in the fall. Palace has also won the Grade 3 Fall Highweight, Grade 2 True North and G1 Vanderbilt, after which he became a millionaire.

Palace’s victory in the Grade 1 Forego runs up his record to 11 wins, five seconds and two thirds from 20 starts and boosts his earnings to $1,309,550.

Bred by The Peter J. Callahan Revocable Trust Dated 2/28/02 and foaled at Jeffrey Tucker’s Stone Bridge Farm in Gansevoort, Palace was purchased by Doug Cauthen, agent for $160,000 at the 2011 OBS select sale of 2-year-olds in training.

He is one of three winning foals and two stakes performers from Receivership, a seven-time winner by End Sweep ($198,300) who brought $85,000 at the 2005 OBS Winter mixed sale and also produced stakes-placed Retriever (Golden Missile). A half-sister to Grade 2 winner French Park, Receivership currently has a 2-year-old by Badge of Silver named Wincoma, a yearling colt by Posse and weanling filly by Pomeroy. She has been bred to City Zip.