It didn't matter that MAIN EXECUTIVE was coming off what was a bit of a sub-par year for him. It didn't matter than his season debut saw him finish last in the prep for the Jacques Cartier.
Yesterday, MAIN EXECUTIVE fired to the lead early in the New Providence Stakes for Ontario sired rivals, hustled hard by Eurico Da Silva, he went torrid fractions and held on to win for the 10th time in his 25th career start,
The 6yo gelding was 11 to 1 and beat LEGAL MOVE, who had won twice this year already including the open Jacques Cartier.
But Main Executive was given great tactics by his rider and he got the jump on everyone.
The homebred by Bold Executive - Dream Smartly, Smarten also held off his older HALF brother, Cool Selection (I regret saying they were full brothers in yesterday Daily Racing Form) who rallied for 4th.
YUMMY WITH BUTTER closed in the 2 path through the stretch and was a flying 3rd.
SATURDAY was a little bit of something for everyone day.
TEN DIFFERENT TRAINERS AND JOCKEYS won the 10 races.
The impressive filly LOMAKI may be a good one. The A.P. Indy filly, a 4yo who just started her career last month with a maiden debut score at Keeneland, strolled to a big win in her 2nd start racing 7 furlongs in 1:23 - RACE 8.
She earned an 89 Beyer Figure.
A $425,000 yearling purchase by Chiefswood Stable, the filly,trained by Eric Coatrieux, is out of Debit Account by Mr. Prospector. She was ridden by Tyler Pizarro.
PROPHETICALLY got back on the winning track with a drop out of graded stakes company to a non-winners of 1 'other than' and she romped in race 9 at 7 furlongs in a modest 1:24 1/5.
The Pulpit-Torrid Affair filly is owned and was bred by Kinghaven Farms and trained by Ian Black. Emma -Jayne Wilson rode.
Trainer MIKE DEPAULO sent out FRANK ROMANO'S LIMOSANO to win the 1st for $10,000 claiming. The One Way Love gelding is a good little earner - he went over $100,000 in his 3rd win in 14 starts.
LANES FOLLY won the 2nd, a modest allowance raxe for Ontario sired mares. The 5yo was claimed for $20,000 last fall for Eugene Melnyk and she seems to be quite delicate but she overcame a slow pace to win the 7 furlong race in 1:25 3/5. Danny Yu trains for Tze OnYeung and David Garcia rode.
Knob Hill Stables have a nice prospect with its homebred NICKI KNEW (who is Nicki and what does she know?), a Tethra - Panteccaria, San Romano filly who won her season debut with a strong, 4 wide rally off the turn. She had been injured last year and is playing catch-up to the Woodbine Oaks.
Jono Jones rode for trainer Kevin Attard.
Drama in race 4 - PICK 4 players who keyed the heavy favourite SIR WINSTON got lucky.
The fleet Steve Asmussen trainee was chewed up in a pace duel with Inspiration Lad but when Grade 3 stakes winner GOTAGHOSTOFACHANCE rallied to beat him, he bore in badly and nearly knocked over MARCO BE GOOD.
Gotaghostofchance was disqualified from the win and placed 4thand Sir Winston was placed first.
The winner is a 4yo by Dance Master and Jim McAleney was up.
The Boldn' Flashy filly U R ENERGY is a winning machine. She won her 5th race in her 14th start yesterday, off the claim for Scott Fairlie's ACE STABLE. She was winning for $12,500 and led all the way under Na Somsanith. She was bred by Joe Prione and Gus Garisto.
The BEAR STABLES, McAleney and READE BAKER won the 7th with the stalking FATAL BULLET, a Florida bred by Red Bullet. That was an allowance race for 3-year-olds.
And another front running winner was RAHTID, at 16 to 1, who won the last race for maidens, dropping from $37,500 to $15,000 for his 2nd race of the season.
The Awesome of Course colt was making his 4th career start and David Clark was his 4th different rider for trainer Carlo Fuoco, owned James Ellis.
FOR A PREVIEW OF TODAY'S GRADE 3 HENDRIE STAKES...
see Friday's post....
Canadian-owned BRIGHT PICK was 4th beaten 3 lengths in the Tall Ships Stakes last night at Presque Islebehind a victorious REPENTING, a Florida bred by Repent.
CATS GOOD TO GO, Ch. c. 4, Tactical Cat - Runaway Babe, by
Blushing John, won his maiden for $7,000 claiming at Stampede Park Friday night.
O—Red Diamond Stable; B—Bernard & Karen McCormack (On.); T—Ron
TURN IT UP, a maiden special weight at Assiniboia Downs at 5 furlongs. Her first win in 10 starts. She's by Twining out of Heat It Up, by Dixieland Heat.
O—Equinox Stable; B—Kingfield Farms (On.); T—Martin Drexler
DRIVING TO BELMONT There's a new kid on the 3yo block to join BIG BROWN, HARLEM ROCKER etc.
CASINO DRIVE RAN A 101 BEYER in his 2nd career start yesterday - in the Peter Pan.
from Belmont Park website...
(PHOTO, ADAM COGLIANESE, AP)
Japanese business executive Hidetoshi Yamamoto made his fortune in amusement games and slot machines. He is a pure sportsman, and proved it by sending two of his young Thoroughbreds to Belmont Park on Saturday afternoon for the 55th running of the Grade 2, $200,000 Peter Pan at nine furlongs, a prep for the 140th running of the Grade 1, $1 million Belmont Stakes on Saturday, June 7.
Both horses, trained by Kazuo Fujisawa, were purchased out of the Keeneland 2006 September Sale. Spark Candle, a son of 1992 Horse of the Year and Belmont Stakes winner A.P. Indy and Serena’s Song, who won 11 Grade 1 stakes in her career, was purchased for $1.5 million.
The other purchase, this for $950,000, was Casino Drive, a son of 2003 Horse of the Year Mineshaft, a son of A.P. Indy, and Better Than Honour, the dam of 2006 and 2007 Belmont Stakes winners Jazil and Rags to Riches.
Their connections said that regardless of what happened in the Peter Pan, Casino Drive would start again in the Belmont Stakes, simply because of the family tie.
What happened in the Peter Pan was an impressive second start for Casino Drive, who did everything right and everything professionally in his 5 ¾-length victory before 6,023 fans. Under Hall of Fame jockey Kent Desormeaux, who won the Kentucky Derby last week with Big Brown and will be favored with that one next Saturday in the Preakness, Casino Drive saved ground behind a fast pace, came out between horses and powered to the victory in 1:47.87. He paid $4.50 to win.
Despite his impressive breeding and gaudy purchase price, Casino Drive’s ability was unknown entering the Peter Pan. In his only previous start, he was an 11 ½-length victor at Kyoto, covering “about” nine furlongs in a pokey 1:54 3/5 on February 23. He then bounced around from different training centers to Japanese racetracks, hoping to dodge an outbreak of influenza.
He, Spark Candle and a maiden, Champagne Squall, arrived on April 30 and were quarantined at Aqueduct before heading to Belmont Park.
“Today, he proved his ability,” said Nobutaka Tada, managing director of Globe Equine Management Ltd. “He had so much to overcome: only one race, more than two-month layoff, long trip and quarantine. Now, we have three weeks to go to the Belmont Stakes and he has three weeks to improve. And he has so much potential to improve. He likes it here at Belmont Park. He feels like he’s home. He’s an American-bred, so he is home.”
Casino Drive made himself at home under Desormeaux. He acted up a bit in the paddock, which Desormeaux dismissed as “playful exuberance,” but settled once the race began. He nestled himself on the rail, as Spark Candle, racing with blinkers, kept the heat on Mint Lane through splits of 23.08, 46.31, 1:10.47 and 1:35.26.
Desormeauz calmly waited until the stretch before tipping his mount out and sending him onward to the Belmont Stakes in first class.
“I certainly understand how Jazil and Rags to Riches won the Belmont,” Desormeaux said. “Yeah, he can run a lot. It’s going to be fun. He’s a phenomenal talent, and we’ve got our hands full with this one. It’s going to be ultimately exciting for all of the fans. He’s got that stride.”
Mint Lane’s trainer, Jimmy Jerkens, did not commit to the Belmont Stakes, nor did jockey Eibar Coa.
“I was going a little bit too fast, and I was really hoping I could go 48 on the front end,” Coa said. “They (Casino Drive and Spark Candle) had the race set up, because (Spark Candle) was next to me the whole way and I never had a shot to relax my horse. At the top of the stretch, Casino Drive went right by me and he had the race won. My horse was clearly second best. He tried hard and I think he will be okay.”
Ready’s Echo broke slowly and had to make up a lot of ground late. Still he was only beaten a half-length by Mint Lane for the place.
“He needed to break better for us to catch up today,” said his jockey, Johnny Velazquez. “He tried his best, but he was still too far back, especially against a horse that ran away with it at the end “