THE FOLLOWING TAKES PLACE...
PATENA HEADED TO RISEN STAR
sharp 2nd in Lecomte fuels Derby dreams
John and Glen Sikura and Dominic Dilalla's PATENA, a Kentucky bred by Seeking the Gold who was based in Canada at 2 with trainer Josie Carroll, is headed to the next step on the path to the KENTUCKY DERBY following a strong 2nd in the Lecomte Stakes at Fair Grounds on Saturday.
The winner was the Larry Jones' trainee FRIESAN FIRE (A.P. Indy-Bollinger, by Dehere) who had a smoother trip, stalking in 3rd behind the 24, 48 3/5 slow pace, than Patena, the latter whom seemed to have a super learning experience in only his fifth career start.
The winner beat Patena by just 1 1/2 lengths but Patena galloped out in front.
The time was 1:37.67.
Rider Robby Albarado remarked (according to Thoroughbred Daily News):
"This was a good race for this colt, with those soft fractions and for him to finish up that well. He was finishing up best of all of them. An extra sixteenth
may help him."
No Beyer Figures were up at DAILY RACING FORM as of this morning.
EXCERPT FROM TIMES-PICAYUNE
Friesan Fire takes Lecomte Stakes at Fair Grounds
by Bob Fortus, The Times-Picayune
Saturday January 10, 2009, 9:35 PM
Settling early allowed Friesan Fire to show punch late, and he raced to victory Saturday in the Lecomte Stakes at the Fair Grounds.
In his previous race, his first with blinkers, Friesan Fire was too eager in the early running, pressed a fast pace and faded in the stretch to finish second behind Uno Mas.
In the Grade III Lecomte, the first two-turn stakes prep for the Louisiana Derby, Friesan Fire relaxed in third place for the first half-mile as Au Moon and Citizen led the field through a moderate pace.
When jockey Gabriel Saez called on Friesan Fire in the stretch, the colt took charge and pulled away to a 1 1/2-length victory over late-running Patena. Au Moon finished third, another 2 1/2 lengths back, and Uno Mas was fourth in a field of eight 3-year-olds.
"He settled down good, relaxed in the beginning, " said Saez of Friesan Fire, who won for the second time in five starts. "He'll be all right."
Larry Jones, who trains Friesan Fire for Tom Ludt's Vinery Stable and Rick Porter's Fox Hill Farms, said: "We're learning more about him all the time. The horse is trying to train us what to do."
Friesan Fire completed the mile in 1:37.63, running the final quarter in 24.14 seconds, a solid finish. He and Patena galloped together strongly after the race from the sixteenth pole -- the finish line for mile races -- to the regular finish line, the one that will be used for the Risen Star Stakes and the Louisiana Derby.
Jones said Friesan Fire earned a spot in the Risen Star on Feb. 7, and undefeated Old Fashioned, owned by Porter, thus will run next in the Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn Park.
Robby Albarado, who rode Patena, was pleased with his performance.
"He's got what it takes to be a nice horse, " Albarado said. "This race might have been better than it looked. I was the victim of a slower-than-normal pace."
read more about the races on Saturday at Fair Grounds including MARK FROSTAD QUOTES about French Beret
MORE LUCK FOR JOSIE CARROLL
Good and Lucky wins La. 'Cap
Jim and Alice Sapara of Alberta celbrated a big win by GOOD AND LUCKY, a Florida bred gelding by Wild Rush in the $75K Louisiana Handicap on Saturday at Fair Grounds, marking a very good day for trainer Josie Carroll (Patena).
(photo at right from 2006 Queen's Plate, by Cindy Pierson Dulay)
Good and Lucky, bred by Louis Rogers and out of the Accused mare Shannon's Innocent, was 9 to 1 and had a wide post but was well rdeen by Pat Valenzuela.
He has won 8 of 22 races and $383,915.
FRENCH BERET guts it out in Col. Bradley
(photo at right from Fair Grounds website)
Sam-Son Farms' FRENCH BERET, win shy most of the time when he's not at Fair Grounds, was very brave in a fighting win in the Col. Bradley Stakes at Fair Grounds in Saturday.
The 6yo gelding by Broad Brush-Misty Mission, from the family of Rainbow Connection, was winning the 1 1/16 mile grass race for the 2nd consecutive year.
Ridden by James Graham, the gelding had a dream trip for a while, joined 2 others in midstretch - in between then- and he somehow got his nose down on the wire first at the finish.
He was coupled with Windward Islands who was not a factor.
It was French Beret's first win since...he won the Bradley last year.
French Beret has won 4 times in 34 starts now, and his earnings are at $645,000.
SOCIETY'S CHAIRMAN just misses in Ft. Lauderdale
Charles Fipke's SOCIETY'S CHAIRMAN, by Not Impossible-Athena's Smile, Olympio, came within a neck of winning the Fort Lauderdale Stakes at Gulfstream on Saturday at 8 to 1. Trained by Roger Attfield, Society's Chairman had a very wide trip but was in the thick of the battle at the wire, missing out to the tough Kiss the Kid at the end.
The 6yo horse only started his career last year.
Bred by Errol Bailey in Ontario, the horse earned a 92 Beyer Figure.
GINGER BREW 3rd yesterday
Champion 3yo filly in Canada for 2008 GINGER BREW hung late and was 3rd beaten about 1 1/2 lengths in the MARSHUA'S RIVER STAKES at Gulfstream on the grass yesterday in her 4yo debut.
MARCHFIELD 8th in San Pasqual
Champion older horse in Canada Marchfield was always outrun in the San Pasqual at Santa Anita on Saturday in his first start as a 5yo.
Eugene Melynk's A.P. Indy colt was far back early in the race, the pace was fast, but the front runner, the classy COWBOY CAL, held on to win over 2 closing longshots.
The winner is a Giant's Causeway colt who has had a start and stop career since he won the Laurel Futurity as a 2yo for Stonerside Stable.
OTHER CANADIAN STUFF
Trainers TINO ATTARD and BARBARA PIRIE hit the exactor with huge longshots on Saturday at Gulfstream.
The former had I'm Spectral ready to run well at 52 to 1 in a $20,00 claimer behind the very tough winner Mystery Prospect.
Pirie sent out KIERNAN'S LEGACY to be 2nd to favourite Fiumes in race 2 for $10,000 claiming at 11 to 1.
LEGAL MOVE, a multiple stakes winner in Ontario, was always far back in the Pelican Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs on Saturfay for owner Bruno Schickedanz.
The winner of that race was the miraculous 7yo gelding by Foxtrail - BLIND RIVER FOX, who has won 22 races from 54 starts. The Florida bred is out of a Bold Ruckus mare named Carolina Ruckus an d he was a $1,000 yearling but recently a $50,000 claim.
At Delta Downs, HEADSTART won his maiden at 7 1/2 furlongs and is an Ontario bred by Jump Start out of Opening Line, by Bet Big, thus a 1/2 brother to stakes winner SWAMP LINE.
Bred by Ron Clarkson, Headstart was making his 4th career start for trainer Steve Asmussen. He earned a 61 Beyer Figure.
Trainer MARK CASSE, Sovereign Award winner in 2008, sent out an 11 to 1 firster to win at Fair Grounds yesterday. The Spanish Steps colt PLEA, owned by Heiligbrodt Stable, is a Louisiana bred.
PRETTY KATHERINE, an Ontario bred by Vindication - Indigene by by Deputy Minster, was second by 3 lengths in the TIBURON STAKES at Golden Gate on Saturday. The 6 furlongs was run in 1:09 3/5.
APPALACHEE BAY (Tethra0Mamatoldmenottacom) won for $4,500 claiming at Charles Town on Sunday for Manette and Phil Brown. The 7yo mare was 10 to 1.
IN THE WORKS
Grade 1 winning Candian-bred JAMBALAYA is getting closer.
He has not raced since he won the Arlington Million in 2007 but put up a 1/2 mile at Gulfstream yesterday in 50 seconds.
Ontario breds on worktab at GULFSTREAM:
WELL POSITIONED (Awesome Again-Taxible, Holy Bull), 4f, :46.80, 1/27
HARLEM ROCKER (Macho Uno), 6f, 1:14.80, 1/2
And Barbaro's brother NICANOR (Dynaformer), 5f (g), 1:01.35, 5/22
VISIT THOROUGBRED BLOGGERS ALLIANCE
A photo contest is on-going at TBA too - vote for one of our own top photographers - CINDY PIERSON-DULAY.
Meanwhile over at HANDRIDE, Patrick addresses Bloggers vs.Journalism, an interesting debate that has been going on for a bit.
Also, he brings to our attention JOHN SHIRREFFS very cool YOUTUBE videos including this one, January 7, taking ZENYATTA out for a spin.