ARROGATE – SEIZED THE DAY
123 Beyer Figure for stunning Travers win
Just when we thought we may have seen it all this year with hoses like California Chrome,, Frosted, Tepin and Flintshire, along comes ARROGATE.
A grey 3-year-old colt by Unbridled’s Song , he is the first foal out of Bubbler, by Distored Humor. Bubbler was a stakes winner and her dam is Meadow Star, the champion 2yo filly.
Making his stakes debut and staking a claim to leadership of the 3-year-old division in one fell swoop, Arrogate wrested command from stablemate American Freedom into the first turn and ran right into the history books Saturday, winning the Grade 1 Travers Stakes in a record time of 1:59.36 seconds before a packed house of 48,630 at Saratoga Race Course.
Smashing General Assembly’s 1 1/4-mile stakes and track mark of 2:00 flat set in 1979, Arrogate was hustled away from the inside by Hall of Famer Mike Smith, and slipped through inside Haskell Invitational runner-up American Freedom and Jim Dandy winner Laoban to wrest command before going a quarter-mile, as Belmont Stakes runner-up Destin and three-time graded stakes winner Gun Runner also took up the chase from close range.
Arrogate ran the half-mile in 46.84 seconds, six furlongs in 1:10.85, and shook them all off nearing the stretch to draw out by 13 ½ emphatic lengths – the third-largest margin of victory in the Travers behind Damascus (1967, 22 lengths) and General Assembly (15 lengths). American Freedom finished gamely to save second over Gun Runner.
Arrogate, a gray colt by the late Unbridled’s Song, was the fourth front-running Grade 1 winner of the meet for the Hall of Fame rider, who swept the Coaching Club American Oaks and Alabama with Songbird, and the King’s Bishop on the Bob Baffert-trained Drefong, who like Arrogate was making his stakes debut as well. This was Smith’s third Travers winner along with 1994 Horse of the Year Holy Bull and Coronado’s Quest in 1998.
“I rode his father – he looks so much like his father,” said Smith. “He was an unbelievably talented horse and his son might be even more talented. It’s crazy. He just did a mile and a quarter and as you can see galloping out, I had trouble getting him to stop. We headed for home and he picked it up when I asked him. I was amazed how he lengthened his stride the last sixteenth of a mile and opened up.”
In winning the $1.25 million Travers and earning $670,000, Arrogate completed a back-to-back sweep of the day’s richest races for Juddmonte Farms, less than an hour after Flintshire won the $1 million Longines Sword Dancer for the second straight year.
Arrogate, now 4-0-1 from five starts, had beaten a total of 10 horses winning three in a row in Southern California. No matter, he made a dozen opponents in the Mid-Summer Derby look ordinary, including the first two finishers in the Belmont Stakes, Creator and Destin, who respectively wound up seventh and ninth, and Preakness/Haskell winner Exaggerator, who was eleventh as the 5-2 favorite without any apparent mishap.
After going off at odds-on in all four of his prior outings, Arrogate paid $25.40 to win as the eighth choice in the wagering. American Freedom, second choice at 5-1 completed a $134.50 exacta on the two horses saddled by Baffert, who saw his Triple Crown winner American Pharoah finish second in last year’s Travers to Keen Ice.
“They looked like they were going easy, and when I heard ’46 and change’ I thought, ‘I think they can handle that’,” said the Hall of Fame conditioner, whose only previous Travers winner was 2001 Horse of the Year Point Given. “‘Big Money Mike’ knows his way around this racetrack. I was hoping [Arrogate] could do something like this. I want to thank the Prince [Khalid Abdullah] and Garrett O’Rourke [of Juddmonte] for having faith in me buying horses for them, We’ve hit a lot of empty spots here, but this one, he looks like the real deal. My horses, they both ran great races and I couldn’t be happier. To win for Juddmonte, a race like the Travers, that’s big for me.”
MIDNIGHT MILEY WINS SECOND STRAIGHT GRADE 3
New top beyer Figure of 97 in Seaway
Little Red Feather syndicate’s MIDNIGHT MILEY, fresh off a big winin the 1 1/16 mile Ontario Matron (G3) on July 17 in her 2nd start of the year, turned back to 7 furlongs and dug in for another score on Saturday at Woodbine. The 4-year-old Midnight Lite filly, a Kentucky bred trained by Julia Carey, won the Grade 3 Seaway Stakes over Elusive Collection under Rafael Hernandez
Midnight Miley, sent to post at odds of 5-2, broke sharpest of all in the Seaway and opened up a three-length lead through a :23 flat opening quarter with Elusive Collection tracking her early foot. She widened her lead to five lengths after a half-mile in :45.42.
Luis Contreras asked Elusive Collection for her best run through the turn, but there was no reeling in Midnight Miley who stayed on strong to notch a 3/4-length win. Elusive Collection earned second money, 2 3/4-lengths in front of the late closing pair of Regia Marina and Cactus Kris who could not be separated in a show photo. Midnight Miley covered seven furlongs in 1:22.07.
Hernandez, who won the Breeders’ Stakes last Sunday at Woodbine in a 26-1 upset aboard Camp Creek, is now a perfect two-for-two aboard Midnight Miley. He guided the free-wheeling bay to an impressive four-length score last time out in the 1 1/16-mile Ontario Matron after opening up an early six-length lead.
“Julia told me we could break and sit off the pace today, and I said, ‘Let’s play it by ear’. She broke well and dragged me to the lead and I let her do it…come get me,” said Hernandez. “This isn’t supposed to be her distance. Julia asked me the other morning if she could do it and I said, ‘For sure.’ She has good speed out of the gate and is always consistent.”
Carey was pleased with the perfect trip engineered by Hernandez.
“Rafael rides her beautifully. You have to ride her with a bit of a hold. If you hustled her too much she’d probably fall apart. I thought they were good fractions. This is an extended sprint so she wasn’t going to get a :24 quarter today,” said Carey. “She’s been working so well that I expected a good effort. She’s mature and healthy and I have a great team working with her. She’s just a healthy, strong filly.”
The filly arrived at Woodbine from California in June of 2015 and after a trio of local starts, she captured the 1 1/16-mile La Lorgnette Stakes on September 20. An allowance winner on the turf at Golden Gate on April 4, 2015, Midnight Miley could see her next start in the grassy Grade 2 Canadian Stakes, a 1 1/8-mile Breeders’ Cup Win and You’re In event, slated for September 17 on the Ricoh Woodbine Mile undercard.
Midnight Miley, bred in Kentucky by Mark Secrest, banked $90,000 in victory while improving her record to 6-1-1 from 15 starts.
Other winners from Saturday –
ESTRADA’S GIRL won off the claim for Lou Tucci and trainer Jamie Attard. This is a 7-year-old mare who came to Woodbine this spring as a well traveled mare. She has now won 15 races from 52 starts and over $540,000.
Trainer MARTY DREXLER has won 4 races in 2 days (Phil in the Blank had that huge win on Froday) as BLURRICANE, an Ontario bred by Rebellion- Otra Vez by Rahy rallied wide to take a 6 furlong allowance race, non-winners of 1 other than, in 1:10.38. This gal loves to win races and she is currently owned by Ken Lee and partners. She was bred by Bernard and Karen McCormack.
The 4yo has 6 wins in 16 races and she was a CTHS yearling purchase three years ago for about $15,000. David Moran rode the winner.
Later, CASABLANCA KISS was bossy on the lead in a 6 furlong allowance/optional claiming race and won over a Godolphin filly, the previously unbeaten Moeity.
This 7 yo mare by Pure Prize is 8 for 36 now, over $330,000 in earnings. She is also owned by Ken Lee, Dennis Mitchell and Don and Gaye Bell.
The Natalma prep at 7 furlongs on the grass went to the exciting Tapit filly TAPA TAPA TAPA, who is based at Presque Isle but has made all 3 starts at Woodbine, two wins and a second. She was adding Lasix off her maiden score for Beau Ravine LLC and trainer Tim Hamm and Pablo Morales was back to ride.
The time was 1:24.21. The pace was on the slow side on a rurf that was a bit giving. Stormy Perfection had a tough trip and is one to tab for the Natalma.
No doubt these gals will also meet Gus Schicekdazn’s impressive debut winner WILL SHE, who won on Friday for trainer Mike Keogh.
Speaking of the Schickedanz/Keogh combo, they won race 7 with SWEET CRIMSON, a Langfuhr filly and half sister to Will She. This 3yo had been 2nd or 3rd in 4 of her 6 races and she finally got it done in this 6 furlong maiden race. Jesse Campell rode 3 winners on the card.
The Keogh stable is hitting at 20% win rate this year.
TOP BEYER FIGURES FROM WOODBINE WINNERS WEDNESDAY THROUGH SATURDAY
97 MIDNIGHT MILEY
91 PHIL IN THE BLANK
90 CONQUEST FAHRENHEIT
89 OCCASIONAL VIEW (turf)
84 NEVAEH’S VALENTINE (turf)
82 BEAR SKINNED
81 ESTRADA’S GIRL (turf)
CONQUEST FAHRENHEIT, hip 64 in the upcoming Conquest dispersal, had shown a ton of talent in workouts and he romped in his debut on the grass, setting him up well for the Grade 2 Summer Stakes. The Scat Daddy colt has very little black-type in his family; his dam, placed Holy Smokie, has had 2 other foals to race, minor winners, and her dam, Witch Approval, by With Approval, has only had one winner and she won 3 races herself.
CONQUEST DISPERSAL CATALOGUE