Saturday, February 11 2017
McCRAKEN SETS TRACK RECORD IN SAM F. DAVIS TOUR DE FORCE
– McCraken lived up to all the hype. And then some.
The unbeaten 3-year-old colt extended his record to 4-for-4 with a one-and-a-half length victory from Tapwrit in the Grade III, $250,000 Sam F. Davis Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs in stakes and track-record time of 1:42.45 for the mile-and-a-sixteenth. State of Honor finished third.
“He puts a lot of confidence in you, that’s for sure,” jockey Brian Hernandez, Jr., said of McCraken, who staged a powerhouse rally on the turn and rolled to victory. “You’ve just got to go with it and ride him with confidence. I asked him at about the half-mile pole and he hesitated a bit, but I think that was his way of telling me ‘Don’t worry. We’re going to get the job done.’ ”
INSPECTOR LYNLEY REWARDS HIS HALL OF FAME TRAINER AND JOCKEY
. – After a troubled start cost Inspector Lynley all chance in the Tropical Park Derby on Dec. 31, jockey John Velazquez asked trainer Claude “Shug” McGaughey to let him ride the colt in his next start.
The two Hall of Fame members got the best out of Inspector Lynley in today’s Grade III, $150,000 Tampa Bay Stakes on the turf, as the son of Lemon Drop Kid took the lead in deep stretch and staved off Kasaqui by a half-length. Irish Strait was another half-length back in third.
TAPA TAPA TAPA UPSETS ELATE IN SUNCOAST STAKES
– Before the $100,000 Suncoast Stakes for 3-year-old fillies, all eyes were on 3-10 favorite Elate from the barn of Hall of Fame trainer William Mott.
That was just the way the connections of Tapa Tapa Tapa liked it.
Racing on dirt for the first time in her six-start career, the daughter of Tapit-Kickin’ the Clouds, by Dixieland Band, assumed the lead shortly after the break under jockey Jesus Castanon and continued with good energy throughout, posting a three-length victory from Elate.
Thursday, February 09 2017
‘HOME-TEAM’ HOPEFULS R ANGEL KATELYN, KASAQUI LOOKING SHARP
– The rock stars are coming to Tampa Bay Downs on Saturday.
With three graded stakes races on the Festival Preview Day Presented by Lambholm South card, and $650,000 in stakes purse money on the line, some of the world’s top trainers and greatest jockeys will be on the scene.
Hall of Fame trainer Claude “Shug” McGaughey has entered his 4-year-old graded stakes-winning colt Inspector Lynley in the Grade III, $150,000 Tampa Bay Stakes on the turf, a race the conditioner won last year. McGaughey also runs 4-year-old filly Azaelia in the Grade III, $150,000 Lambholm South Endeavour Stakes on the turf.
Wednesday, February 08 2017
NO DOZING, McCRAKEN READY FOR DAVIS
NESS CLAIMS TRAINER OF MONTH
– A few railbirds did a double-take today when they spotted Arnaud Delacour, the trainer of Grade III, $250,000 Sam F. Davis Stakes entrant No Dozing, schooling the colt in the paddock between races.
With six workouts on the Tampa Bay Downs main dirt surface since Dec. 31, the Lael Stables-owned No Dozing could possess an important advantage against the other main contenders. But Delacour is leaving nothing to chance in his effort to determine where No Dozing fits in the 3-year-old picture.
“He was a little bit nervous, so we need to paddock-school him again (Thursday),” Delacour said. “He’ll be fine, but he hasn’t raced for a while so he was a little bit edgy.”
No Dozing, who finished second to Mo Town in his final start of 2016, the Grade II, mile-and-an-eighth Remsen Stakes at Aqueduct on Nov. 26, drew the outside No. 9 post for the 37th edition of the Sam F. Davis, which will be the 10th race on a 12-race Festival Preview Day Presented by Lambholm South card beginning at 12:12 p.m.
Saturday, March 12 2016
FLORIDA OAKS QUOTES
GRADE III, $200,000 FLORIDA OAKS
WINNER: BACIAMI PICCOLA
Winning trainer Brian Lynch: “She came over in mid-summer and was a little slow to get adjusted to the way we do things over here, so we sort of played with her through the fall. Julien and her started to hook up once we got to Palm Meadows, and he spent a lot of time with her. She is a very difficult filly to ride and can be temperamental, but they seemed to get along fantastic.
GRADE II, $200,000 HILLSBOROUGH
WINNER: TEPIN (COURSE RECORD, 1:46.26)
Winning trainer Mark Casse: “Relief. I was a little worried after the first quarter, but I’m happy. I’m always nervous. It’s funny, the distance worked in our favor today. She’s quite a horse. She can do a little bit of everything; that’s what makes her so amazing.”
Winning jockey Julien Leparoux: “I knew (Isabella Sings) was going fast, but when that happens, you almost have to not pay attention to the one in front. Johnny (Velazquez) came back a little at the half-mile pole, but my horse had to fight hard today, which is good. I didn’t whip her because I could feel she was running for me. She had to have a big race to win, and she did.”
LAMBHOLM SOUTH TAMPA BAY DERBY QUOTES
GRADE II, $350,000 LAMBHOLM SOUTH TAMPA BAY DERBY
WINNER: DESTIN (STAKES AND TRACK RECORD, 1:42.82)
Winning and runner-up trainer Todd Pletcher (via telephone from Gulfstream): “I was very, very pleased with (Destin’s) performance. He seems to be getting more and more professional and is learning how to finish his races. I felt he would improve with more experience and that is proving to be true. After his first two races, he was still piecing things together, but he has gotten better with experience. We will assess him but probably would not come back in the Florida Derby, which leaves the Wood Memorial, Blue Grass or Arkansas Derby as possibilities.
Friday, March 11 2016
MOTION HOPES RAFTING STEPS UP IN LAMBHOLM SOUTH TAMPA BAY DERBY
OLDSMAR, FL. – Kentucky Derby-winning trainer H. Graham Motion draws a couple of parallels between Rafting, his entry in Saturday’s Grade II, $350,000 Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby, and Ring Weekend, which won the Tampa Bay Downs showcase two years ago.
“They’re both by the same stallion (Tapit, the leading U.S. sire the last two years),” Motion said today from his Palm Meadows Training Center base in Boynton Beach on Florida’s east coast. “And they were both horses I thought very highly of as 2-year-olds.”
Thursday, March 10 2016
OLDSMAR-BASED TRAINERS PREPARED FOR SATURDAY’S CHALLENGE
OLDSMAR, FL. – As a former assistant to trainer Mike Maker, 35-year-old Jordan Blair got to admire many of the Kitten’s Joy offspring Maker trained for top owners Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey.
Last spring, Blair purchased a Kentucky-bred daughter of Kitten’s Joy-Prime Silver, by Silver Hawk, for $35,000 at the Ocala Breeders’ Sales Company’s 2-Year-Old Sale. “Not many of Kitten’s Joy’s babies are that pretty, but they all run hard, and if you get a nice one it can turn out to be something special,” Blair said.
NO HICCUPS FOR BRODY’S CAUSE AS 2016 DEBUT NEARS
FACES NINE RIVALS
– Shortly after last fall’s Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Keeneland, trainer Dale Romans laid out a road map to get his talented 3-year-old, Brody’s Cause, into the starting gate at Churchill Downs on the first Saturday in May.
The colt’s first major step toward Thoroughbred immortality takes place Saturday in the 36th edition of the Grade II, $350,000 Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby. Brody’s Cause is the presumptive favorite in a 10-horse field for the mile-and-a-sixteenth main-track contest, which offers 50-20-10-5 points to the first four finishers as part of the Kentucky Derby Championship Series of 3-year-old prep races.
Sunday, February 14 2016
LAMBHOLM SOUTH ENDEAVOUR STAKES QUOTES
GRADE III, $150,000 LAMBHOLM SOUTH ENDEAVOUR STAKES QUOTES
Winning owner Robert E. Masterson: “These are once-in-a-lifetime horses. I’ve had a lot of graded horses, but this one, she’s a champion and she is just special. We know her so well – when they let her go out in (50.17 for the half-mile), it was like, you’re not going to catch her down the lane. She is just too fast.”