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The Conscience of Thoroughbred Racing


By Gulfstream Press Staff — Trainer Lisa Lewis derived personal satisfaction from Brewmeister’s optional claiming allowance victory Sunday at Gulfstream Park, where Peter Brant’s 3-year-old gelding continued to realize the potential he showed his trainer well before he embarked on his racing career last year.

Lewis has saddled several graded-stakes winners during her career, but Brewmeister’s second straight victory was particularly gratifying, considering that she had helped to break the son of Point of Entry last year at Brant’s newly purchased Payson Park, a 405-acre training center in Indiantown, FL.

“The horse trains like a good horse. We’ve been excited about him. I had him last year as a 2-year-old, because I help break Peter’s babies. I liked him last year. I thought he was a nice horse. Maybe he didn’t come into himself at 2, but when he started training this year, I was really excited about him,” Lewis said.

“Mr. Brant wanted to leave some horses here because he owns Payson Park and he wants to support Florida racing. He left a handful of horses, and this is the first one.”

Brewmeister ran twice last year without success for trainer Chad Brown, finishing fifth on turf at Saratoga in August and fourth after setting the pace at Belmont Park in September.

The Kentucky-bred gelding, who was purchased for $300,000 at the 2018 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Select Yearling Sale, was reunited with Lewis at Payson Park to prepare for his 3-year-old campaign.

After encountering bumping at the start of his June 13 return to action at Gulfstream, he closed from last to finish second. He graduated in style by 4 ½ lengths in a 6 ½-furlong race July 4.

Brewmeister settled well off the pace in Sunday’s 6 ½-furlong race before launching a five-wide drive that carried him to victory by three-quarters of a length over favored Man of Honor, who had defeated him in his first start back this year.

“Brewmeister was out of that first crop we did. He started at Mr. Brant’s farm in Connecticut and then came to Payson,” Lewis said. “It’s exciting for everyone in the whole program. That makes it more than just winning a race – it’s great for the whole program.”

Lewis has helped break 16-20 horses each of her first two seasons working for Brant, not including a few horses coming off layoffs, while training a manageable number of active racehorses at Payson Park.

“The breaking, as far as the initial learning, is all done at his farm in Connecticut called White Birch Farm in Greenwich, Connecticut. He’s got people there that have worked for him for a long time,” said Lewis, noting that Brant also sends young horses to Niall Brennan and Stonestreet.

“They start doing all the handling and start breaking them to the tack. Once they’re going well and they feel confident that they’re ready to go, they come to me usually at the end of October. We bring them to the racetrack, start training them, and get them ready to go to New York in the spring,”

 Brewmeister came out of Sunday’s victory in good order. “I’d like to stretch him out a little bit, but that might be a mistake the way he’s running,” said Lewis with a chuckle.

Thursday’s Nine-Race Program Has $250,000 Guaranteed Rainbow 6 Pool. Live racing returns to Gulfstream Thursday with a nine-race program beginning at noon and a guaranteed pool in the 20-cent Rainbow 6 of $250,000.

            The Rainbow 6 will begin with the fourth race, a six furlong claiming event for fillies and mares. The sequence also includes two turf races and a $47,000 maiden event for 3-year-old fillies and mares at seven furlongs.

            Emisael Jaramillo, who has ridden 97 winners during the summer meet, holds a one-win advantage over Edgard Zayas and Miguel Vasquez. In the trainer standings, Saffie Joseph Jr. leads with 42 wins, five more than Mike Maker. Todd Pletcher has 30 wins. Stonehedge LLC is currently the leading owner with 18 wins, only one more than Arindel.

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