JAW-DROPPING: PINK LLOYD upset by KINGSPORT
When two horses scratched from the Ontario sired SHEPPERTON STAKES on Sunday at Woodbine, leaving a field of five including Horse of the Year PINK LLOYD, it was easy to consider the result a forgone conclusion.
Pinky was riding an 11 race stakes streak and had beaten the likes of the 4 rivals Jacks Escarpment and $500K earner Kingsport before.
At 1 to 9 and with a whopping $250,000 bet to win on him, Pink Lloyd was up to his usual antics in the gate, getting antsy for the doors to open. He ended up breaking a bit awkwardly again but he was soon on the lead in a pace battle with Bortal Spirit. But the hero of Ontario racing appeared to be in deep water turning for home as he could not put away Boreal Spirit and Jacks Escarpment, a handy fellow who has not won a race in 2 years.
Then all of a sudden, the almost jet-black Kingsport came from miles behind and split rivals to blow on by for his 2nd Shpperton Stakes win. Owned by Goldmart Farms and trained by Sid Attard, Kingsport ran 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:15.61, for a 94 Beyer Figure.
Jacks Escarpment kept 2nd from Pink Lloyd.
The race was just all sorts of confusing since Kingsport had been very drab form coming into the Shepperton and he was 1 for 5 las year, with a win in the Sir Barton at 1 1/16 miles.
An entire horse, Kingsport, by Milwaukee Brew, is 8 for 26 in his career.
The loss was only the 3rd in the career of Pink Lloyd.
The other stakes race on a quiet weekend was the My Dear Stakes for 2-year-old fillies and the much hyped MY GAL BETTY (Point of Entry) won with a bold move between horses but in the process, she caused enough problems for others than she was disqualified and placed 3rd.
Promoted was American invader STIFLING, who ran so well in her career debut, also at Woodbine, that she came back up with trainer John Bourke. She is a Flatter filly who cost $27,000 at Keeenland Sept. Pablo Morales rode.
One of the most impressive runs of the week was still by a Robert Tiller trainee. CONQUEST SWAGMAN posted a 95 Beyer Figure in a first level allowance race. The Lonhro colt (originally a $120,000 yearling, then a $9,500 2yo at the Conquest Stables dispersal) was claimed for $10,000 late last year and he has won 3 of 4 starts this season for Tiller, who also owns the colt.
Speaking of Lonhro, the Australian superstar horse who won 26 races and almost $4 million in hi career, he is the sire of the first timer WALKABOUT CREEK, who won his debut at Woodbine on Sunday with a 77 Beyer Figure. Mike and Anna Doyle own the gelding.
Top Winning Beyer Speed Figures from Wed. July 4-Sunday July 8
95 CONQUEST SWAGMAN
91 SWEET LITTLE MAN
84 WAY TO VERSAILLES (turf)
83 GRACED LIGHTNING (turf)
83 NIIGON’S LEGACY (turf)
Canadian first crop sire SOUPER SPEEDY had his first starter and first winner on Saturday at Woodbine.
SOUPER HOT battled inside and on the pace all the way and drew off to his debut score for owners Carlo d’Amato and Stacey Van Camp. Mike Mattine trains the colt who had fast works and was bet down as the 1 to 2 favourite.
ONE YEAR LATER
Chief Know it All Disqualified from 2017 Canadian Derby
Hard to believe that a year has gone by since the wild finish in the 2017 CANADIAN DERBY, won by Chief Know It All.
Even harder to believe that it took a tribunal that long to figure out that Chief Know It All has now been disqualified from victory in that famous race. One. Year. Later.
This corner saw the run from the late last turn to the wire as crowded enough that the winner appeared to take away the path of Double Bear, who finished third.
Chief Know It All’s connections are not too happy:
“We’ll fight it until there is no money left except what goes to the lawyers,” said Diodoro, who said the plan at this point is to appeal the tribunal’s decision to the Court of Queen’s Bench.
“It’s the biggest joke there is. To take this long … It’s a complete embarrassment to horse racing. They wonder why horse racing is in the toilet in Alberta, and it’s because of stupid stuff like this. It’s pretty pathetic.” -ROBERTINO DIODORO, trainer of Chief Know it All
JOHN SERVIS THE LATEST TRAINER GETTING THE RAISED EYEBROWS
Firenze Fire’s huge win in Grade 3 Dwyer sees colt go from 6 to 1 during race to 5 to 2 winner
From writer Ed Derosa on Twitter, a rundown of the odds change on Firenze Fire before his stunning Dwyer Stakes win (look at the last 19 seconds when horses were racing):
“People are talking a lot of shit,” Servis said, “and I’m really not happy about it.”
…heading into Sunday, Servis was 19 of 35 (54 percent) at Monmouth Park’s current meet and 17 of 35 (49 percent) at Belmont. Overall this year, his horses have won 34 percent of their races, with 66 percent of starters in the money, according to Equibase.
WINX Nearing Return to Training
HOW A SUPER BOWL BET COULD GET JUSTIFY TO RACE IN HASKELL JULY 29 NEXT
Triple Crown winner Justify, shown being paraded at Santa Anita last month, is the subject of a unique Super Bowl bonus to lure him to this month’s Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park, New Jersey.
Even though the clock is ticking fast, it still feels like Triple Crown winner Justify is going to race on the Jersey Shore in the $1 million Grade 1 Haskell Invitational. But who knew that his run there July 29 might include a bonus that gives his connections a big-money futures bet on Super Bowl LIII?
It is part of the bonus package that Monmouth Park has dangled in front of WinStar CEO Elliott Walden and trainer Bob Baffert, all tied in to the track’s new sports book that William Hill christened three weeks ago.
“Given the sports book we have now, we’re interested in attaching a bonus to winning the Haskell of having a pretty substantial Super Bowl bet where (connections) can parlay it into a big number,” said Dennis Drazin, who is in his seventh year running Monmouth Park.
Yes, this is the same Dennis Drazin, attorney at law, who has been credited with devising the legal pick-and-roll that got the U.S. Supreme Court to throw out the nationwide ban on sports gambling.
How the bonus will work was still being negotiated this week with WinStar, its partner the China Horse Club and with Baffert, who has won the Haskell a record eight times.
For his part Baffert said he has not decided yet when Justify will race again. He canceled plans for a breeze this week, saying that the big chestnut was still regaining his racing weight and that a southern California heat wave made any serious training counterproductive. But he did not rule out going back to Monmouth.
If Justify looks ready to Baffert, what about the bonus? The basics are nothing out of the ordinary. There would be extra money for Team Justify just for showing up with the Triple Crown. The same thing was baked into the Haskell three years ago, when the race’s purse was upped to $1.75 million to attract American Pharoah, and separate bonuses were paid to owner Ahmed Zayat and to Baffert.
But now there is a Monmouth Park sports book
ASSINIBOIA DOWNS business at midway point
Assiniboia Downs has been on a serious roll of late, as anyone who was at the facility’s Canada Day fireworks display can attest. On some evenings and weekends, it’s almost like you’ve been transported back in time to when horse racing was the only gambling game in town.
“That was the largest crowd we’ve had for live racing since the early ’80s,” Assiniboia Downs CEO Darren Dunn said of the July 1 attendance. “I can confidently say it was well above 10,000 people. It was a perfect storm. There were no fireworks at Assiniboine Park, we had a top-shelf live race card with big fields of horses, and the inclement weather probably brought some people back from the lake early.”