He’s loaded with back class, loves the grass and the distance of 5 ½ furlongs. Now 2010 Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint winner Chamberlain Bridge will try to pick up his first win this year when he makes his first appearance at Monmouth Park in the $60,000 My Frenchman Stakes on Saturday.
“He’s a hard-knocking old horse,” said Tom Morgan, the assistant to trainer Bret Calhoun. “He’s also a temperamental horse.”
Chamberlain Bridge, who failed to defend his title in last year’s Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint, has never run at Monmouth before and Morgan said that he joined Calhoun’s division here about a week ago. Last out on July 7, which was his first start of 2012, he missed in the $100,000 Arlington Sprint by only a half-length.
“He ran a winning race that day,” said Morgan. “He broke in the air, then got caught wide and still came running.”
The Hunk, who won the John J. Reilly Handicap for New Jersey-breds two starts back, Just Chillin Boss, Hewitts, Christiesborntorun, Triple E, Southern Region, Mississippi Man, and Ju Jitsu Jax are the others entered.
MY LUCKY SHOES RUNS IN FRIDAY FEATURE
Now that she’s figured it out and found the winner’s circle, My Lucky Shoes tries for another taste of victory in Friday’s featured $42,000 allowance optional claiming race.
The George and Lori Hall color bearer was led over to the races by trainer Kelly John Breen 13 times before she finished first in a $40,000 maiden special weight at Monmouth two starts back on June 10, and last out one month ago, she set the pace in a non-winners of one other than before having to settle for second. On Friday, she breaks from the rail in the field of eight.
“It’s not the best of post positions, but it looks like she fits in with this group,” said Breen. “She’s been training well for this next start and she loves Monmouth Park.”
There’s no doubt about that. In seven tries over the main track, she has three seconds and one third to go along with that sole victory.
Northern Cotton may be her most formidable competition. Conditioned by leading trainer Jane Cibelli, the 3-year-old daughter of High Cotton is dropping down from the $75,000 Sophomore Fillies Stakes for Florida-breds at Tampa Bay Downs last out and has been working very well at Monmouth during her four month break.
HALL OF FAMER RON TURCOTTE AUTOGRAPH SESSION SUNDAY
Ron Turcotte and “Big Red” are inseparable in racing history, and on Sunday the Hall of Fame rider will be at Monmouth Park for a Secretariat signing to benefit racing charities.
Turcotte, who was in the irons when Secretariat captured the 1973 Triple Crown and set records in all three races on the way to back-to-back Horse of the Year honors, was paralyzed in a racing accident in 1978. Since then, he has been a tireless advocate and fundraiser for the disabled and visits race tracks to raise awareness and money for charities which include the Jockey Guild’s Permanently Disabled Jockey Fund (PDJF).
Turcotte, North America’s leading stakes-winning rider in 1972-73, will be at the Secretariat tent signing autographs and selling Secretariat memorabilia from 11:30 a.m. to the last race. All proceeds will be donated to charity.
TRUJILLO, CIBELLI, GENERAZIO LEAD STANDINGS
With more than two months of live racing to go this season, the races for top honors come meets-end continue to have some familiar faces showing the way as Elvis Trujillo leads the jockey’s race, Jane Cibelli tops all conditioners and Patricia Generazio is in front of the owners.
>From 282 mounts, Trujillo, a two-time Monmouth riding champion, has booted home 68 winners, 11 more than his nearest competitor, Paco Lopez, the 2010 top jockey here. In third is 13-time leading Monmouth rider Joe Bravo, who has 41 trips to the winner’s circle this season.
Jane Cibelli, who made history in 2011 by becoming the first female to win the Monmouth title, is once again atop the trainer’s standings. Through Sunday’s card, Cibelli sports 19 wins, two more than Eddie Plesa Jr. Rounding out the top three is Todd Pletcher, who has sent out 14 winners this meet.
Patricia Generazio, with 11 wins, leads a tight race for top owner. Just behind the leader is George and Lori Hall (10 wins) and Mid-Atlantic Tbred Investments LLC (9 victories).
The 2012 Monmouth Park meeting runs through Sunday, Oct. 7.