Twisted Tom goes the distance in Federico Tesio Stakes

Saturday, April 22nd, 2017
Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club

Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club

By Sarah Mace

Winner of the 1 1/16-mile Private Terms at Laurel Park on March 18, when he nailed O Dionysus at the wire in his stakes debut, Cobra Farm’s Twisted Tom bested that rival and three others in the short but potent field of Saturday’s $125,000, 1 1/8-mile Federico Tesio at Laurel. The Creative Cause gelding appears to be getting better and better the longer he goes.

Exiting post three with the vanguard, Twisted Tom navigated the clubhouse turn three wide in third before inching up into second in the backstretch, with Action Everyday just to his inside. The pair pressed the pacesetter Hashtag Alex through early fractions of 24.39 and 48.08.

In the far turn, Twisted Tom and Action Everyday passed Hashtag Alex in tandem, while O Dionysus uncoiled a bid from last and moved into contention.

O Dionysus engaged Twisted Tom, now on the lead, in upper stretch, but this time the outcome for the rivals was not even close, as Twisted Tom went on to post a decisive 2 1/4-length victory. Action Everyday finished 2 3/4 lengths back in third and the final time for 1 1/8 miles was 1:53.60 over the sloppy (sealed) track.

Twisted Tom was let go at 5-1 and, after Newman Racing’s New York-bred Absatootly upset the Primonetta field at odds of 10-1 in the previous race, the New York-bred Laurel double came in at $169.80 for $2.

“He broke sharper today,” said Jockey Feargal Lynch, also aboard for Twisted Tom’s Private Terms victory. “I just got into a nice rhythm all the way. I thought O Dionysus might struggle to stay and I knew from my horse’s gallop-out last time that he would like the distance. Today he had no kickback and a small field. He’s a turfer and a mudder and a very adaptable, huge horse who should get better.”

“He ran terrific and Feargal really rode him well once again,” said trainer Chad Brown. “They’re a great team, those two. The horse showed a lot of heart again. He’s a long-winded, hard-trying horse that obviously showed he has a tremendous amount of stamina and will to win. He’s a horse that continually is improving, which we love to see. We’re just really proud of his effort today.”

Continued Brown, “[Twisted Tom] really has [shown versatility]. It’s another thing I’m really proud of. He showed a new dimension today, and dealing with an off track he handled it fine. Feargal deserves a lot of credit for using good judgment in keeping him out of trouble. He’s a big horse and although he was losing some ground he picked a good spot to let him relax and find his rhythm. When that horse [O Dionysus] came to him on the outside, he showed his heart.”

Twisted Tom, who has earned $209,040 from four wins in six career starts, broke his maiden at second asking for trainer George Weaver and owner Thomas Brockley at Belmont Park last September 22 going a mile on the green in a state-bred maiden special weight. Acquired by Cobra Farm, who transferred the horse to Brown, in four starts for his new connections he has won through his first level state-bred allowance condition at a mile and posted victories in the Private Terms at 1 1/16 miles and the 9-furlong Tesio.

The Tesio is a “Win and You’re In” event for Triple Crown-nominated horses to the $1.5 million Grade 1 Preakness at Pimlico Race Course, but Twisted Tom has not been nominated. Said Brown, “Because he’s not [Triple Crown] nominated it certainly complicates things, so I’ll speak to the ownership group. Right now we’ll just enjoy this win. We’ll see how the horse comes out of the race physically and then we’ll all probably speak about it next week sometime and come up with a plan.”

Bred by Dr. William B. Wilmot and Dr. Joan M. Taylor and foaled at Gallagher’s Stud in Ghent, Twisted Tom is one of six winners from six foals to start out of Tiffany Twisted, a Wilmot-Taylor homebred who is a half sister to multiple graded stakes winner Incurable Optimist and two stakes-performers. Grade 1 winner Class Play appears further down the family tree.  Tiffany Twisted has a yearling filly by Fed Biz and was bred to Paynter in 2016.



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