Thursday, July 24, 2008
BABS MOOSSA WINS GRADUATION STAKES
Halo Farms’ Babs Moossa responded to the strong urging of jockey Garrett Gomez to get up in the final strides and nose out 7-5 favored Triumphant Flight in today’s featured $136,000 Graduation Stakes for California-bred two-year-olds.
Outrun in the early furlongs of the 5 1/2 furlong dash, Babs Moossa, the 3-1 second choice, rallied into contention in the upper stretch and then wore down Triumphant Flight for the photo finish triumph.
Babs Moossa, trained by Jerry Hollendorfer, ran the distance in 1:04.70 and returned $8.80, $4 and $2.80 while earning $81,600 with his third victory in five starts.
The gelding, a son of Crowning Storm and Moossa’s Girl, now has a bankroll of #132,450.
Triumphant Flight paid $3 and $2.60, while Turbo Call paid $4.60 to show.
Gomez, 2007 Eclipse Award winner as America’s top rider, was off to a slow start this summer at Del Mar, going winless with his first 19 mounts until he won a race. Monday. Babs Moossa provided him with his second win this afternoon, having won the sixth race aboard Bendolyn for an $8.60 payoff.
Alex Solis was the day’s riding star with three winners, Paloma’s Flight in the third, Steam Iron in the fifth and Las Patronas Lady in the eighth.
The day’s attendance was 9,989.
GARRETT GOMEZ (Babs Moossa) --- "I thought I'd fall out the backdoor there and be last, but he put me right up in the fray. I had to take a bit of a hold and cheat him off the bit, then we got settled in. He's a big horse and he's learning. I had to work to get him to change leads, but once he did, he came running. I thought I was going to go on by and win by a length and a half, but once he got up next to that other horse (Triumphant Flight) he waited on him a little bit.
I hope this is the start of me being all the way back. It sure is good to be back home. I very much enjoyed and appreciated all the success I had going on the road, but this is home and it's good to be back."
VICTOR ESPINOZA (Triumphant Flight) -- "He stumbled coming away from there and that didn't help. But he ran good. Not much you can do about those kind. I knew he (Garrett Gomez on Babs Moosa) had beaten me. No doubt. My horse will like it longer. He'll like that."
JULIO GARCIA (Turbo Call) -- "I had to wait with him. Too much. I only got to run the last furlong. With a better trip, I'm dangerous."
DAN WARD (asst. trainer for Jerry Hollendorfer) -- "It's very hard to win a race and it feels good. This is a very good-looking horse and he seems to be improving with each race. When Jerry ran him for a claiming price of $12,500 (June 25 at Pleasanton), he was a little afraid he'd get claimed. Now we'll see how he comes out of the race and then we'll decide what to do with him."
FRACTIONS: :22.43 :46.03 :58.54 1:04.70
The stakes win was the first of the meet for Garrett Gomez and his 18th overall at Del Mar. It is the first time he's won the Graduation.
The stakes win was the first of the meet for Jerry Hollendorfer and his fourth overall at the track. This is his first win in the Graduation.
Babs Moossa was bred by and is owned by Halo Farms, the nom de course of Teddy Aroney of Rancho Santa Fe, a former partner in many horses with the late Sid Craig.
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