Thursday, October 06, 2011

Calder barn notes 10/6/11

Mambo Meister & Manicero Lead Festival Undercard Stakes

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (October 6, 2011) - Quantum Racing Team #1’s 6-year-old gelding Mambo Meister is a longtime fan favorite at Calder Casino & Race Course and Leo Azpurua, Jr.’s 3-year-old Manicero is building an impressive resume with each start, both multiple stakes-winners expected to see action in stakes to be run on the track’s $850,000 Festival of the Sun program on Sat., Oct. 15.

The $300,000 In Reality and $300,000 My Dear Girl division finales of the Florida Stallion Stakes series for 2-year-olds lead the Festival card that also will include renewals of the $100,000 Spend a Buck Handicap (G3) for 3-year-olds and up at 1 1/16 miles and the $75,000 Tropical Park Derby and $75,000 Frances A. Genter Stakes for 3-year-olds to be run on turf at 1 1/8 miles and one mile, respectively, the latter for fillies.

Mambo Meister won the 2009 edition of the Spend a Buck for trainer Phil Gleaves and finished second in the race last year. The son of King Cugat went on to a strong fifth-place finish in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1) at Santa Anita in 2009 and has run well in other Graded stakes on the road, but has posted all of his 11 career wins on turf and dirt at Calder while earning over $660,000.

Mambo Meister ran two very good races to win the Mecke and Primal overnight stakes here this summer by four and 11 lengths, respectively, but will bid to bounce back from an unfortunate trip to New York where she finished seventh with a wide trip last out in the Woodward Stakes (G1) at Saratoga on Sept. 3 won by Horse-of-the-Year candidate Havre de Grace..

Other notable nominees and prospects for the Spend a Buck include Bonnie Heath Farm and partners’ 6-year-old Mad Flatter, who shipped from Kentucky to win the Spend a Buck last fall for trainer Jeffrey Thornberry; Frank Calabrese’s 4-year-old Where’s Sterling, winner of the Philip H. Iselin Handicap (G3) last out at Monmouth Park on Aug. 20; and Off The Hook Racing’s Turbo Compressor, trained by Todd Pletcher.

Manicero has won eight of 11 career starts for co-owner and trainer Leo Azpurua, Jr. and the son of Mass Media captured the $75,000 Needles Stakes over the Calder course last out on Sept. 17 in his first ever try on turf. He posted his first stakes victory winning the $125,000 Jack Price Juvenile here last fall on Florida Million day by 8 ¼ lengths.

Trainer Christophe Clement has traditionally supported the Calder stakes program in the fall with early arrivals into Payson Park for the winter season from his powerful New York stable, and has nominated candidates for both the Tropical Park Derby and Frances A. Genter. Clement has Peter Deutsch’s Adirondack Summer in the Tropical Park Derby with solid turf stakes credentials already established.

Adirondack Summer is a son of Thunder Gulch and won the $100,000 Dania Beach Stakes at Gulfstream Park early this year over Brilliant Speed and just missed when third by a neck in the $100,000 Transylvania Stakes (G3) at Keeneland in early April. In just one start since, he finished third in the Summing Stakes on turf at Belmont Park on Sept. 16.

Clement won the last running of the France A. Genter in 2007 with Virginia Kraft Payson’s homebred Rutherienne, who would go on to become a Grade 1 winner of more than $1 million, and has her full-sister Ruthenia eligible for next Saturday’s race along with George Bolton and Peter Leidel’s French-bred Miss Liberty.

Ruthenia is a daughter of Pulpit that finished second in her last two starts on turf at Saratoga, most recently the $78,000 Riskaverse Stakes on Sept. 2 after winning the $80,000 Good Mood Stakes over the Belmont course last year. Miss Liberty would be making her American debut if she goes after winning five of 12 starts in France. She finished fifth in a Group 3 test last out at Deauville on Aug. 12.

Bartolome & Straight Fax Clash in Saturday Allowance Feature

ARS Racing Stable’s 2-year-old Bartolome has looked good in his two career starts at Calder Casino & Race Course for trainer Jose Garoffalo, winning his debut by six lengths going a mile on Sept. 3 and finishing third behind Burning Time in the $88,000 Foolish Pleasure Stakes last out on Sept,.17 going one mile and 70 yards.

Bartolome comes back Saturday as the horse to beat in a field of six entered in the ‘a other than’ allowance feature at one mile with leading jockey Luis Saez named to ride. The son of Toccet was a bargain purchase for $3,700 at the OBS April 2-year-old sales.

Owner-trainer Walter Rosas-Canessa’s Straight Fax could be the biggest threat to Bartolome in the field with Manuel Aguilar named to ride. The son of Halifax has won both of his starts here sprinting six furlongs, his debut for a $16,000 claiming tag on Sept. 9 and a starter/allowance last out on Sept. 24.

Completing the field for Saturday’s feature are Leopoldo Murillo Ortega’s Bennyfax, Cecelio Penalba;’ Signal Hill Farm’s Mucho Mas Macho, Isias Enriquez; Caroni Stable’s Guri, Fernando Jara; and Korina Stable’s Ravelo’s Boy, Ameth Gonzalez.

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