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Game Plan veteran gets close again in Turf Paradise stakes
He may have been foaled in California, but the Game Plan gelding Highland Games has spent his entire athletic career in Arizona, where he was runner-up for the second consecutive year in the $75,000 Cotton Fitzsimmons Mile Handicap on January 16. [WATCH RACE VIDEO]
From 33 starts since his 2-year-old season, Highland Games has raced exclusively at Turf Paradise, with a single exception coming in the form of a stakes-winning foray to Yavapai Downs last May. The Lyman Rollins trainee has crafted a consistent record in his adopted home state, with an overall scorecard of nine wins, four seconds and three thirds and earnings of $218,062. He has made 22 dirt and turf stakes appearances.
In the 2010 edition of the Cotton Fitzsimmons, a one-mile grass race, Highland Games broke from the inside and made the most of a ground-saving trip throughout under regular rider Miguel Hernandez, who kept the 7-year-old veteran no further back than fourth in the 11-horse field at any point. The duo took the lead in the stretch and appeared to have the race in hand, until the 16-1 longshot On My Dime closed with a flourish on their outside and snatched away the victory by a head at the wire.
Highland Games was bred by Terry L. Brooks and McMurry TB Services, and races for the Sandra Hall Trust. His dam is the multiple stakes-producing mare Evergreen Beauty, by Hurlingham.
His sire is Game Plan, whose 45 stakes horses have contributed toward cumulative progeny earnings of more than $10.9 million. The 17-year-old Danzig stallion holds court at E.A. Ranches in Santa Ysabel, California. — January 16, 2010
Decarchy filly wins first Golden Gate stakes race of 2010
Antares World, a 3-year-old filly by the California stallion Decarchy, surpassed her runner-up finish in the $64,400 Corte Madera Stakes on December 5, 2009 with a winning return to Golden Gate Fields in the $75,000 California Oaks on January 1, 2010. The 1 1/16-mile test was conducted as the track’s first black-type race of the new year. [WATCH RACE VIDEO]
The Steven Specht trainee has made five of her six career starts on the Tapeta Footings all-weather surface at the Bay Area oval. She broke her maiden by nine widening lengths on October 24, followed by a half-length allowance optional claiming score on November 18 and a head-bob loss to Salty Fries in her stakes debut in the restricted, one-mile Corte Madera.
Reunited with regular rider Frank Alvarado and lined up against four rival sophomore fillies for the California Oaks, Antares World raced forwardly in second through the first half-mile, gained an advantage over the tiring front-runner in the second turn, then successfully held off a late challenger by a head in a final time of 1:45.75. She collected $45,000 for the effort to elevate her overall bankroll to $108,978.
The California-bred filly is campaigned by her breeders, Mr. and Mrs. Larry D. Williams. She is the third foal out of Alashir’s World, a winning daughter of Spinning World.
She is by Decarchy, California’s leading first-crop sire of 2007 and leading second-crop sire of 2008. The 13-year-old son of Distant View stands at Magali Farms in Santa Ynez, and is represented by seven stakes horses among his 55 winners to date. — January 1, 2010
Vronsky runner remains unbeaten with runaway victory
Tri Something New, a first-crop representative of the California stallion Vronsky, picked up right where he left off on December 28, posting a facile victory in Arizona to remain undefeated despite a seven-month absence from competition.
The 3-year-old gelding won at first asking on May 31, when he dominated a six-furlong maiden race at Emerald Downs by three lengths. But he did not start again for trainer Mike Chambers until his end-of-the-year outing in $3,500 claiming company at Turf Paradise, which he captured by 5 1/4 lengths going away.
Sent postward for the 5 1/2-furlong test as the 2-1 second wagering choice among eight starters, Tri Something New and rider Glenn Corbett vied for the lead through the first quarter-mile, took command thereafter while encountering little resistance and simply galloped to the wire for the easiest of victories in a final time of 1:04.06.
Tri Something New has earned $6,820 for owner Melinda Blue, who bred the gelding in California. He is the third foal out of the winner St Antim (Ire), a daughter of Petardia (GB).
His sire, Vronsky, resides at Old English Rancho in Sanger, California. The 10-year-old son of Danzig is a multiple winner and the sire of five winners from seven starters, led by the 2009 juvenile stakes winner Excessive Passion. — December 28, 2009
Stud fee alternative announced for California sire Suances
Rancho Temescal in Piru, California has announced an innovative option for California breeders who support the farm’s stallion, Suances (GB), one of the state’s leading second-crop sires of 2009.
During the 2010 breeding season, breeders may choose either to pay the stud fee of $3,500 (live foal guarantee), or, for the first 20 approved mares, the fee will be waived by naming Red Baron’s Barn as co-breeder (50%) of the resulting foal.
Suances, a Group 1 winner in France and Grade 2 winner in Northern California, was represented by his initial runners in 2008, and has average earnings per starter of more than $31,000 from his first two crops to race. The Most Welcome (GB) sire’s chief earner is the 2009 Grade 2-placed stakes winner Feisty Suances ($202,728).
For more information about this 12-year-old stallion and his 2010 breeding season options, please contact Tim Cohen of Rancho Temescal at (805) 521-0511. — December 28, 2009
Harbor the Gold adds to success with stakes-placed 2YOs
Meeting head-to-head for the third consecutive time in the early stages of their respective careers, the Oregon-bred fillies Rockhill Gold and Storm N the Harbor each scored a stakes placing on December 14 while contributing toward the ongoing success of their mutual sire, Harbor the Gold.
After competing against each other in a pair of 5 1/2-furlong maiden special weight races at Portland Meadows on October 27 and November 9, with Rockhill Gold accomplishing her inaugural victory in the latter test, the rivals faced each other again in the track’s $25,350 Janet Wineberg Stakes for 2-year-old fillies, conducted at six furlongs as one of the features on Oregon Championship Day.
Although neither youngster could overcome the front-running favorite, Shame On Rosie, who wound up winning the nine-horse race by a widening six lengths on the fast dirt track, Rockhill Gold finished best of the rest in second after running four-wide in the turn under jockey J. Luis Torres. Storm N the Harbor chased the early pace under Jose Zunino, but gave way late and finished third, a length behind her cropmate.
Rockhill Gold is trained by Sue Utley for her owner and breeder, Burle Oakley. She is the first foal out of the unraced mare Rockhill Jazz, by He’s Tops, and has earned $8,680.
Storm N the Harbor has banked $4,748 for trainer Sharon Balcom, who co-owns the dual-placed filly with Peggy Buckley. The first foal out of Category Five’s winning daughter Storm N Sunny was bred by Dwight Bailey and Emerald Creek Farms LLC.
The stakes placings by his daughters helped strengthen the standing of Oregon’s current leading sire of 2-year-olds, Harbor the Gold. The Bar C Racing Stables resident boasts year-to-date progeny earnings of more than $200,000 from this age group, which includes the multiple stakes winners Koala Beach and Hollywood Harbor. He also reigns as the state’s leading second-crop sire with overall 2009 progeny earnings of more than $360,000. — December 14, 2009
Juvenile stakes winner leads huge weekend for Decarchy
Sourdough Sam, a rising star among the California-bred foal crop of 2007, anchored a highly successful 24-hour period for the third-crop sire Decarchy with his inaugural stakes victory on December 12. [WATCH RACE VIDEO]
The 2-year-old gelding, who has now won three out of four starts at Golden Gate Fields, captured the track’s $61,400 Gold Rush Stakes over six rivals by employing a perfect stalking trip under his regular rider, Inoel Beato. The even-money favorite snared the one-mile race by an easy, one-length margin in a final time of 1:39.39.
The John Nicoletti homebred was produced by General Meeting’s winning daughter General Luster. Trained by Dean Pederson, he overcame a troubled trip to run second in Golden Gate’s six-furlong Golden Nugget Stakes on November 21, and has accrued total earnings of $95,000 while running exclusively on the Tapeta Footings all-weather surface.
While the precocious Sourdough Sam held the Saturday spotlight in Northern California, three Decarchy distaffers found their way to the winner’s circle on Sunday at Hollywood Park in Southern California.
A pair of fillies — Onefunsonofagun and Hit the Brix — provided bookends to the track’s nine-race program with their respective victories in the six-furlong opener and the five-furlong nightcap, each while running for the claiming price of $25,000. Four-year-old Onefunsonofagun is a five-time winner and $113,680-earner out of Olympic Crisis, by Olympio. She is trained by Brian Koriner for owner E-Racing.Com. Maiden winner Hit the Brix, 3, was produced by the Summing mare I Speak English and is campaigned by Anthony Narducci with trainer Mike Puype.
The dual stakes-placed filly Quisisana, a 4-year-old out of the Distinctive Cat mare Mink Kiss, extended her sire’s streak when she captured a six-furlong allowance optional claiming race for Puype and owner Ran Jan Racing Inc. The four-time winner has earned $165,758 to date.
Decarchy is represented by 52 winners and progeny earnings of more than $2.3 million overall. The 12-year-old Distant View stallion out of 2002 Broodmare of the Year Toussaud stands at Magali Farms in Santa Ynez, California. — December 13, 2009
Swiss Yodeler juvenile holds on for third in stakes debut
Ignored by most handicappers, who let him get away at odds of 41-1 in Golden Gate Fields’ $61,400 Gold Rush Stakes, the Swiss Yodeler youngster Swiss Memo defied his doubters with a tenacious, third-place effort in the December 12 test for 2-year-olds. [WATCH RACE VIDEO]
A two-time winner — first at 5 1/2 furlongs on dirt at Pleasanton last July, then at one mile on soft turf at Golden Gate on November 21, Swiss Memo made his stakes debut in the one-mile Gold Rush. Under jockey Hector Romero, the California-bred gelding leapt first from the gate, then led the seven-horse assembly through the first half-mile of the race, while setting fractions of :24.89 and :50.10 on the Tapeta Footings all-weather surface and maintaining a two-length advantage in the early going.
Although the field threatened to swallow him up in the second turn, Swiss Memo dug in and held on for third, reaching the wire two lengths behind the fast-closing winner, Sourdough Sam. He earned $7,800 for the hard-trying effort, elevating his eight-race bankroll to $38,682.
Swiss Memo was bred by prominent California breeders Pam and Martin Wygod, and produced by the dual stakes-placed winner Memoranda, by Memo (Chi). He is conditioned by trainer Bud Klokstad for owner Art McFadden.
The promising beginner is one of Swiss Yodeler’s 17 juvenile winners of 2009, a group which has collectively earned more than $516,000 this year. The Grade 1-winning Eastern Echo sire, 15, stands at Harris Farms in Coalinga, California and has total progeny earnings of more than $19.1 million to date. — December 12, 2009
Highland Games, by Game Plan, just misses stakes triple
In his hard-luck attempt to capture the $50,000 Hank Mills Sr. Handicap at Turf Paradise for a third consecutive year, the Game Plan runner Highland Games ran widest of all the contenders but ultimately lost in a photo finish at the conclusion of the December 12 race. [WATCH RACE VIDEO]
A 6-year-old gelding who has made all but one of his 31 lifetime starts at the Arizona oval, Highland Games is a veteran of the Turf Paradise stakes program. Among his nine career victories are three local black-type scores, including back-to-back editions of the one-mile Hank Mills Sr. Handicap in 2007 and 2008.
In the 2009 running, the Lyman Rollins trainee was kept on an outside path throughout. With regular jockey Miguel Hernandez in the irons, the 6-1 third wagering choice raced four-wide early, settled near the back of the eight-horse field, then shifted out six paths away from the rail when he entered the stretch. Although he was able to make up significant ground on most of his rivals, he fell just a nose shy of 9-1 Tie Rod at the wire and was forced to settle for second.
Bred in California by Terry L. Brooks and McMurry TB Services, Highland Games currently campaigns for the Sandra Hall Trust. The $199,242-earner is the third stakes winner out of Evergreen Beauty, a winning daughter of Hurlingham.
Highland Games is the top 2009 earner for the California-based stallion Game Plan. The 16-year-old son of Danzig stands at E.A. Ranches in Santa Ysabel, and is represented by 22 stakes winners and the collective earners of more than $10.9 million from 10 crops to race. — December 12, 2009
Rosario ties Hollywood Park record aboard Decarchy filly
On December 11, the Decarchy filly A Clever Ten contributed to a career-best day for jockey Joel Rosario as one of the 24-year-old rider’s six winning mounts at Hollywood Park. Through his one-man riding exhibition, Rosario equaled the Southern California track’s record for most wins in one day — a milestone which he now shares with Racing Hall of Fame jockeys Bill Shoemaker, Laffit Pincay Jr. and Kent Desormeaux.
His successful effort in the day’s fifth race came aboard A Clever Ten, a California-bred filly who was making her fourth career outing in the $28,400 starter allowance, which was carded at 6 1/2 furlongs on the Cushion Track all-weather racing surface. Rosario patiently kept his filly in fifth running position for the first half-mile, then made an aggressive, five-wide move when the six-horse field entered the stretch. A Clever Ten gained a slight advantage in the final approach, and ultimately inched away from her rivals to record a 1 1/4-length victory in 1:16.40.
The 3-year-old filly collected an $18,000 paycheck for her second lifetime win, boosting her total bankroll to $31,800. The Jerry Hollendorfer trainee, who broke her maiden in a 5 1/2-furlong claiming event during the Oak Tree Racing Association meet at Santa Anita Park in mid-October, is campaigned by the ownership group of GSR Stable, Hollendorfer and Todaro.
A Clever Ten is the third foal out of the unraced Clever Trick mare Cleverness, and was sold for $33,000 at the 2008 Barretts May Sale of 2-Year-Olds in Training. Her breeder is Milt Policzer.
Magali Farms in Santa Ynez, California is the home of 12-year-old Decarchy. The Distant View stallion, a two-time graded stakes winner, was the Golden State’s leading first-crop sire of 2007 and leading second-crop sire of 2008. — December 11, 2009
Standout Suances colt garners another stakes placing on turf
The talented Suances (GB) runner Feisty Suances, a Grade 2-placed stakes winner on the all-weather racing surfaces in his native California, continued to experiment on the turf with a solid, third-place effort in the inaugural edition of Hollywood Park’s $53,100 Contested Bid Stakes on December 5. [WATCH RACE VIDEO]
The 3-year-old colt has made 10 starts to date, yielding four wins, three seconds and a third for total earnings of $202,728. All but his two most recent outings have been on the main Cushion Track surface at Hollywood, the Pro-Ride surface at Santa Anita Park and the Tapeta Footings surface at Golden Gate Fields. In addition to exhibiting his versatility by winning at least one race on each of those synthetic surfaces, the Darrell Vienna trainee made an auspicious turf debut in the $50,000 Jack Coady Sr. Stakes at Turf Paradise on November 14, finishing second by a nose after enduring a wide trip in the one-mile test.
Partnered with frequent rider David Flores and kept at the grassy distance of a mile for the age-restricted Contested Bid, Feisty Suances stalked the pacesetter from second, made his bid in the final turn, then kept moving forward despite being sandwiched between two closers in late stretch. He wound up finishing third of the combative trio, who were separated at the wire by a nose and a neck; Riviera Cocktail was the winner in 1:34.53.
Feisty Suances was bred in California by owner Red Baron’s Barn. His dam is the winning Good and Tough mare Good and Hot.
His sire is the Rancho Temescal resident Suances, a Group 1 winner in France and Grade 2 winner in California. The 12-year-old son of Most Welcome (GB) is represented by collective progeny earnings of more than $300,000 from his two crops of racing age. — December 5, 2009
Juvenile Decarchy filly narrowly misses in black-type debut
With a runner-up finish in her stakes debut on December 5, the precocious Decarchy filly Antares World became the third member of the California sire’s 2007 foal crop to hit the board in a black-type race this year, joining Sourdough Sam and De Sica. [WATCH RACE VIDEO]
Based in Northern California, where she has made all five of her starts to date, Antares World entered Golden Gate Fields’ $64,400 Corte Madera Stakes for 2-year-old fillies on a two-race win streak at the Bay Area oval. She broke her maiden with authority over the Tapeta Footings surface on October 24, when she cruised to a nine-length victory at six furlongs; she returned on November 18 to record a half-length score at a mile in allowance optional claiming company, despite being bumped throughout her stretch drive.
The California-bred filly was installed as the 7-5 wagering favorite for the one-mile Corte Madera, and was accompanied for the journey by her regular rider, Frank Alvarado. After breaking smartly from the gate, Antares World tracked the pacesetter from second, while never positioned more than two lengths behind, then nabbed a brief lead at the top of the stretch. But the Steven Specht trainee was overtaken from the inside by Salty Fries and jockey Russell Baze, and ultimately lost by a head following a valiant battle to the wire. Two lengths further back was third-place finisher Bleach Blonde.
Antares World banked $13,000 to push her overall earnings to $63,978. She is the third foal out of Spinning World’s winning daughter Alashir’s World, and was bred by her owners, Mr. and Mrs. Larry D. Williams.
Twelve-year-old Decarchy, by Distant View, holds court at Magali Farms in Santa Ynez, California. The dual graded stakes winner has cumulative progeny earnings of more than $2.2 million and seven stakes horses to his credit from three crops to race. — December 5, 2009
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Suances filly breaks her maiden in front-running fashion
For California-bred Princess Suances, the third time proved to be the charm on November 25, when the 3-year-old Suances (GB) filly translated a front-running effort at Hollywood Park into a definitive maiden win in her third trip postward.
Making her first start in Inglewood following a seventh-place career debut at Del Mar Thoroughbred Club in early August and a narrow second-place showing at Santa Anita Park in mid-October during the Oak Tree Racing Association meet, Princess Suances stretched out from the six-furlong distance of those two earlier races to a one-mile circuit and switched from the main-track synthetic racing surface to the turf.
Trainer Darrell Vienna’s tactics worked to perfection. Ridden by Hollywood leader Joel Rosario in the $38,400 maiden special weight test, the strapping sophomore filly broke eagerly from the outermost stall of the starting gate and encountered no serious threats from her five overmatched rivals as she posted internal fractions of :24.87, :48.72, 1:12.63 and 1:24.49 through the first seven furlongs. She reached the conclusion of the race under a hand ride in 1:36.16 while recording a 2 1/2-length margin of victory, and returned $4, $2.80 and $2.40 to her supporters as the even-money wagering favorite.
Bred and owned by Red Baron’s Barn, Princess Suances has banked $27,000 from her initial three starts. She is the first foal out of the unraced Dixie Union mare Princess Leela.
With four winners from his inaugural 10 starters, led by the Grade 2-placed stakes winner Feisty Suances, 12-year-old Suances holds court at Rancho Temescal in Piru, California. The Group 1-winning son of Most Welcome (GB) has cumulative progeny earnings of more than $290,000 from two crops to race. — November 25, 2009
Oregon leader Harbor the Gold tallies another 2YO winner
In only his third career start, R. A. Laney’s Gold became the sixth juvenile winner of 2009 for the emerging Oregon sire Harbor the Gold when he captured a 5 1/2-furlong contest at Portland Meadows on November 24.
Drawn on the outside of the eight-strong field who had assembled for the $8,000 maiden claiming race, the Rolland Fergason-trained gelding attracted the majority of attention as the 6-5 wagering favorite, due to his runner-up effort at the track, level and distance two weeks earlier under returning rider Troy Stillwell. Unlike that previous race, in which he took an immediate lead and ultimately tired in the stretch, R. A. Laney’s Gold raced in fourth early, moved out four-wide in the turn and took command of the proceedings with an eighth of a mile remaining to run.
Stillwell managed a 1 1/2-length victory aboard the youngster, who stopped the clock in 1:06.71 on the fast dirt track.
R. A. Laney’s Gold was bred in Oregon by Joy Obrist, who now campaigns him in partnership with Debora Fergason. He is the second foal out of the winning Country Light mare Laney, and has earned $3,670 to date.
Thanks to the success of his current 2-year-old runners, topped by the multiple stakes winners Koala Beach and Hollywood Harbor, the Bar C Racing Stables stallion Harbor the Gold leads all Oregon sires by juvenile progeny earnings in 2009, with more than $195,000 accrued by his runners in this age group this year. The 8-year-old son of Seeking the Gold has total progeny earnings of more than $460,000, and also reigns as Oregon’s leading second-crop sire of 2009. — November 24, 2009
Unusual Heat filly Flashover wheels back for stakes placing
Just five days after she finished a disappointing fourth as the 6-5 favorite in an open-company allowance race for her own gender on Santa Anita Park’s 6 1/2-furlong downhill turf course, the Unusual Heat filly Flashover made some amends when she returned to the same course and distance and ran third against males in the $54,280 California Sky Stakes, which was conducted for California-breds by the Oak Tree Racing Association on October 28. [WATCH RACE VIDEO]
Saddled by trainer Barry Abrams and paired with jockey Joe Talamo, Flashover was sent postward as the joint 7-2 second choice in the field of six runners assembled for the California Sky. After a clean break, Talamo settled his mount just off the rail in fourth, where the duo remained throughout the first half of the race. Upon reaching the bottom of the hill and entering the stretch, Flashover moved out four-wide and powered ahead, but she was ultimately no match for the front-running winner, Dance With Gable, who posted a brisk final time of 1:11.97 and took the trophy by a one-length margin. Flashover reached the wire three-quarters of a length behind the runner-up, Big Bad Leroybrown.
Flashover’s $6,466 paycheck improved her overall earnings to $205,770. From 13 starts to date, the 4-year-old filly has compiled a record of five wins and four placings, topped by a second in Oak Tree’s $100,000 California Cup Distaff Handicap on October 3.
The fourth foal out of the winning Skywalker mare Air Force One was bred by the partnership of Arams/Estevez/Huston, Joe/Johnson-Stoll and Young/Luzariaga. She currently races for owners Barry Abrams, M. Auerbach LLC, Huston Racing, Peter Joe and Matt Young.
Unusual Heat is represented by 47 stakes horses from nine crops of racing age, and boasts total progeny earnings in excess of $22.3 million. The 19-year-old multiple stakes winner by Nureyev stands at Old English Rancho in Sanger, California. — October 28, 2009
Juvenile Decarchy runner secures black type in Arizona stakes
Two-year-old De Sica became the fifth runner by the California-based stallion Decarchy to garner black type when he outran his 39-1 odds with a third-place finish in the $87,782 ATBA Fall Sales Stakes at Turf Paradise on October 17. [WATCH RACE VIDEO]
The youngster has made all five of his career starts in his native Arizona, where he sold as a yearling in October 2008 for a mere $4,000. Owned and trained by Tom Bartol, the gelding has already earned nearly five times that purchase price, with his most lucrative payday to date coming in the six-furlong Arizona Thoroughbred Breeders Association (ATBA) event.
Competing against 11 rivals while paired for the first time with jockey Vicky Baze, De Sica raced along the rail in mid-pack, moved up in the turn and passed all but the distant winner and runner-up while making his bid in the final furlong. He banked $12,698 for the effort, pushing his total cache to $19,296.
A debut winner in maiden special weight company at Yavapai Downs last June, De Sica has won once and placed three times overall. He is the second foal out of the stakes-placed winner Italian Diva, by Silken Reality, and was bred in Arizona by Filippo Santoro.
De Sica hails from the third foal crop of Decarchy, a dual graded stakes winner by Distant View who stands at Magali Farms in Santa Ynez, California. The 12-year-old stallion is a half-sibling to four Grade 1 winners, including North America’s leading third-crop sire, Empire Maker. He is represented by cumulative progeny earnings of more than $2 million of his own. — October 17, 2009
Harbor the Gold maiden winner romps by 13-plus lengths
Relishing the move from Emerald Downs to Portland Meadows, the first-crop Harbor the Gold gelding Git Rrr Dun Too turned his Oregon debut into a rout on October 14, when he dominated a maiden special weight sprint by an eye-popping 13 1/2 lengths.
Prior to shipping south, the 3-year-old runner had made a trio of starts in August and September at the $5,000 to $7,500 maiden claiming level, with his best effort in Washington coming in a fourth-place finish on September 24. But the Mark Jones trainee demonstrated an immediate affinity for his new surroundings when rain in the Portland area created a wet fast surface for his local welcome.
Under the guidance of jockey Robert Burney, Git Rrr Dun Too broke from the gate third among the eight starters assembled for the five-furlong test, and quickly set the tone when he took the lead a few strides out. At the three-eighths mark, his advantage was already five lengths clear of his closest rival; in the stretch, it increased to 10 lengths. From that point onward, Burney merely pointed his mount at the wire and the 6-1 gelding took care of the rest. His winning time of :57.43 was just shy of the track’s :57.13 record for the distance.
Bred in Washington by Carol Noonan, Git Rrr Dun Too has earned $3,588 for owners Alan Bozell and Donel Matwiejow. The four-time starter is out of the unraced Jazzing Around mare Jazzy Sue.
His sire is the leader among all Oregon stallions who entered stud in 2005: Harbor the Gold, a winning son of Seeking the Gold. The Bar C Racing Stables resident has accrued more than $440,000 in progeny earnings from his initial two crops of racing age. — October 14, 2009
Unusual Heat filly overcomes obstacles for stakes placing
She may have taken an overland route to get there, but the Unusual Heat filly Golden Doc A managed to reach the wire as runner-up in the Oak Tree Racing Association’s $70,810 Louis R. Rowan Stakes at Santa Anita Park on October 12. [WATCH RACE VIDEO]
The 4-year-old filly, who captured the Grade 1 Las Virgenes Stakes at Santa Anita in February 2008, entered the 6 1/2-furlong Rowan nine days after her disappointing effort in the $100,000 California Cup Distaff Handicap. In that restricted race, she blew the final turn and veered out seven-wide when entering the stretch of the track’s 6 1/2-furlong downhill turf course, winding up seventh among 10 starters.
Although the Rowan was conducted on Santa Anita’s flat, Pro-Ride main track, Golden Doc A again ran wide through the turn when she closed from back of the five-horse field. But this time, under jockey Rafael Bejarano’s steady encouragement, the Barry Abrams trainee increased her momentum and got up for second, finishing two lengths behind the winning favorite, Free Flying Soul, despite remaining on her right lead throughout her entire stretch run.
Bred in California by David Abrams and campaigned by Ron McCauley, Golden Doc A totes a lifetime record of three wins and eight placings from 26 starts, and a $580,126 bankroll. She is the second graded stakes winner out of 2007/2008 California Broodmare of the Year Penpont (NZ), by Crested Wave.
Unusual Heat, 19, stands at Old English Rancho in Sanger, California. The Nureyev sire is represented by more than $22.2 million in lifetime progeny earnings. — October 12, 2009
First-crop Vronsky filly a three-time winner at Turf Paradise
On October 12, the Vronsky filly Shesourkindagal demonstrated her affinity for Arizona soil when she captured a five-furlong race to remain perfect in three main-track sprints at Turf Paradise.
The 3-year-old runner, a member of her sire’s inaugural foal crop, has competed on dirt, turf and all-weather surfaces while making 13 starts at six different racetracks in Arizona and California over the past 12 months. But she has found her best stride in short-distance attempts on a fast strip at Turf Paradise, where she broke her maiden in her fifth start last February. She followed that five-furlong score with a 12 1/4-length romp in a local, $5,000 claiming race carded at six furlongs on March 8.
After making six disappointing appearances elsewhere over the next seven months, placing just twice, Shesourkindagal returned to the site and distance of her maiden win for her most recent outing, in which she faced seven rival fillies and mares in a $3,500 claiming race. Saddled by trainer Matt Williams and ridden by jockey Wilson Dieguez, she overcame a slow start with a powerful late rush and reached the wire with a one-length advantage in a final time of :58.17.
Shesourkindagal was bred in California by her owner, Blahut Stables LLC, and has earned $18,535 while posting three wins and three placings overall. She is the second foal out of Clever Trick’s unraced daughter Clever N Cute.
Vronsky is represented by five winners from seven starters to date, including the stakes-winning juvenile Excessive Passion. The second-crop sire, a 10-year-old multiple winner by Danzig, stands at Old English Rancho in Sanger, California. — October 12, 2009
Suzanne Cardiff-recommended Gayego wins G1 Ancient Title
Long-absent Gayego, a 2008 Triple Crown contender who was selected at auction by bloodstock consultant Suzanne Cardiff, returned to his Southern California roots on October 11 and punched his ticket to the 2009 Breeders’ Cup World Championships with an emphatic victory in the Grade 1 Ancient Title Stakes, a $300,000 feature presented by the Oak Tree Racing Association at Santa Anita Park. [WATCH RACE VIDEO]
Contested over the same Pro-Ride surface and six-furlong distance of the upcoming Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1), the Ancient Title served as a homecoming for its 6-5 winner, whom Cardiff had recommended for purchase by former owner Cubanacan Stables during the 2006 Keeneland September Yearling Sale. That original $32,000 auction price is just a small percentage of the Kentucky-bred colt’s $1,299,620 bankroll three years later.
After gaining his early racing experience at Santa Anita and Hollywood Park, Gayego won Oaklawn Park’s 2008 Arkansas Derby (G2) and competed in both the Kentucky Derby (G1) and Preakness Stakes (G1). In his final start for his former connections last November, he set a Hollywood track record of 1:13.37 in a 6 1/2-furlong allowance optional claiming win before he was sold to Godolphin Racing and sent to the United Arab Emirates to prepare for a 2009 campaign.
In two March starts at Dubai’s Nad al Sheba racetrack, the Gilded Time colt won a Group 3 race at six furlongs, then ran second in the Group 2 Godolphin Mile. His new connections were further rewarded when the colt won a six-furlong optional claiming race at Saratoga Race Course upon his subsequent return to the United States. Shipped from New York back to California after that August 17 triumph, 4-year-old Gayego closed from ninth to first under Garrett Gomez in the 10-horse Ancient Title, stopping the clock in a swift 1:08.28 for his first Grade 1 score.
Gayego has won seven of 13 starts overall, with three seconds. He is currently trained by Saeed bin Suroor for Godolphin owner Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum.
Based in Arcadia, California, Suzanne Cardiff offers pedigree research consultation and other Thoroughbred-related services. — October 11, 2009
Entries between July - November 2008.
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