Wednesday, June 27, 2012
Sassy Image and Musical Romance top Summit of Speed Nominees
MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (June 27, 2012) – Separated by a neck when the top two finishers in last year’s Grade 1 Princess Rooney Handicap, Jerry Romans’ Sassy Image and Pinnacle Racing Stable and Bill Kaplan’s Eclipse Award winning champion Musical Romance lead the list of 24 fillies and mares nominated to this year’s running of the six-furlong stake, one of six added-money events to be contested July 7 as part of Calder Casino & Race Course’s Summit of Speed program, Florida racing’s showcase day for sprinters.
A seven-time winner from 16 starts, with over $813,000 in career earnings, Sassy Image exits a sixth-place performance in the Grade 1 Humana Distaff, her first start after being sidelined for eight months. In that same race, Musical Romance, winner of the Grade 2 Inside Information at Gulfstream Park in mid-March, crossed the wire second to track-record setter Groupie Doll.
Other possible Princess Rooney participants include Gem Inc.’s Nicole H, second in the Grade 2 Vagrancy in her last start, and Terra Di Sienna Stables’ Pica Slew, unbeaten in her three appearances at Calder and winner of the Grade 3 Azalea Stakes in 2010.
The Grade 2 Smile Sprint, a Breeders’ Cup Challenge “Win and You’re In” race, attracted 25 nominations including a trio of top-shelf sprinters exiting the Grade 2 True North Handicap at Belmont Park in Zayat Stables, LLC’s runner-up Justin Phillip, Barry Butzow and Westrock Stables, LLC’s fourth-place finisher Hamazing Destiny, and Darley Stable’s fifth-place performer Crossbow.
Also among the list of Smile Sprint nominees is Padua Stables’ Grade 3 Aristides winner Rothko, Edward Seltzer and Larry Baum’s Ponche Handicap hero Field Commission, and Stud El Aguila’s Indiano, winner of the Grade 2 Carry Back Stakes on the 2011 Summit of Speed program.
Eighteen sophomore sprinters were nominated to this year’s running of the Carry Back, led by Shivananda Racing’s multiple graded stakes winner Trinniberg, Klaravich Stables, Inc. and William Lawrence’s Grade 1 winner Currency Swap, and Jacks or Better Farm, Inc.’s local hopeful Fort Loudon.
Trinniberg and Currency Swap have met twice before, with Trinniberg winning the Grade 2 Woody Stephens in his most recent start and Currency Swap holding the decision from last year’s Grade 1 Hopeful Stakes at Saratoga, while Fort Loudon is a six-time winner at Calder, including victories in this year’s $75,000 In Summation Stakes and $75,000 Unbridled Stakes.
Elaine, Richard, and Bertram Klein’s Good Deed, runner-up in the Grade 3 Eight Belles at Churchill Downs on May 4, leads the list of 22 3-year-old fillies nominated to the Grade 3 Azalea Stakes, a race that also includes stakes veterans such as B J D Thoroughbreds, LLC’s Livi Makenzie and Rick Shanley’s Say a Novena, along with Glencrest Farm, LLC’s promising prospect Jamaican Smoke and Preston Stables, LLC’s unbeaten Sharp Sally.
Both the Bob Umphrey Turf Sprint and the Hollywood Wildcat received 22 nominations, with the former getting a look from last year’s Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint winner Regally Ready and the latter including four horses from the barn of trainer Christophe Clement in Blue Maiden, Fontley, Miss Liberty, and Wallis, and four horses from conditioner Marty Wolfson in Beloveda, Sister Pippa, Speak Easy Gal, and Timezone.
Entries for the Summit of Speed will be taken Monday, July 2.
Read more articles in the Calder category.