Del Mar, CA (August 8, 2021) – Zip Now, the 3-year-old of Racing Hall of Fame member, Tiznow, out of the multiple graded stakes winner and California Champion Unzip Me, made as stylish a racing debut as one can in the opener on the Sunday card at Del Mar.
Seven lined-up for the five furlong maiden special weight over the firm turf course. Breaking sharply from post six, Zip Now cleared the field after the opening furlong and clocked his opening quarter in 24.05. He shifted into a higher gear, zipping the next quarter in 22.88 and finishing his final furlong in 11.39 to win without pressure by three lengths. Final time was 58.34.
Zip Now races by Harris Farms Inc., Donald Valpredo, and Alysam Racing and he is trained by Carla Gaines. Foaled and raised at Harris Farms, he was bred by Harris Farms, Donald Valpredo, and Martin Jones. (Zip Now foal photo).
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Shelbyville, IN (August 4, 2021) – Majestic Harbor’s dynamic filly duo of Pearl Tiara and Diamond Solitaire battled each other to the wire to finish 1-2 in the $150,000 Indiana First Lady Stakes going one mile and seventy yards at Indiana Grand. For full race coverage and photos, by Tammy Knox, courtesy of Indiana Grand, click here.
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Albany, CA (July 30, 2021) – The feature race of the day at Golden Gate Fields was a five and one-half furlong allowance over the all weather. Tiger Queen was bet down to the 8/5 favorite to visit the winner’s circle after th 8th race and she did not disappoint the faithful.
Breaking from the rail, the 4-year-old Smiling Tiger filly, zipped straight to the front and threw down a 21.32 opening quarter. She still had company at her saddlecloth as she ticked off the half in 44.84. She kept rolling, opening up through the stretch to win in a final time of 1:03.72.
Tiger Queen is a homebred racing for Julian Coles and she is trained by William Delia. She was produced by the winning Benchmark mare, Perfect Rhyme.
Another daughter of Smiling Tiger visited the winner’s circle today, with Taming the Tigress romping by more than five lengths in the 6th race, a $44,060 allowance at Del Mar going six furlongs over the fast main track.
Bred by Highlander Racing Stable LLC, the 3-year-old filly is out of Joeandbetty’sbaby, a winning daughter of Yes It’s True. She races for the partnership of CYBT, Michael Nentwig, Ray Pagano and Daniel Weiner and she is trained by Peter Miller.
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Shelbyville, IN (July 19, 2021) – The 3rd race on the card at Indiana Downs feature two daughters of California’s Leading Second Crop Sire Majestic Harbor after the winner’s share of the one mile and seventy yard allowance. Their running styles could not have been more different. One with frontrunning speed. The other, a strong closing kick from the back of the field. At the finish, only a nose separated them.
Dance Money, the frontrunner, and Lieutenant Kitty, the closer, broke from posts four and one, respectively. Dance Money was first out of the gate quickly cleared the field. Lieutenant Kitty trailed the field for the first half-mile and commenced her closing kick around the final turn. Dance Money dug in through the stretch while her cropmate came closer with every stride. At the line, Dance Money’s nose was just a little longer in a fine effort for both runners.
Dance Money’s victory takes her earnings to $63,085 for her owners, Barbara Eakin and Shelly Nance. Trained by Jonathan Nance, she was bred by Anthony Wolfe and Julie Mudman. She is out of the Cactus Ridge mare, Cactusa.
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Pleasanton, CA (July 17, 2021) – Nardini, the 5-year-old daughter of Acclamation, proved much the best in the 6th race at Pleasanton, a one mile and seventy yard allowance with a purse of $33,208.
Adept on turf or dirt, Nardini found the latter surface to her liking today. She pressed the pacesetter for the first half-mile. Kept out in the four path, she took the lead turning into the stretch and that was that. She drew away through the final furlongs to win as she pleased by more than seven lengths.
Nardini was bred by Stephen Ferraro and she was produced by the California Champion Ismene, a daughter of Tribal Rule. She races for Legacy Ranch, Inc., and she is trained by Andy Mathis.
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by Tammy Knox
SHELBYVILLE, Ind. (June 23, 2021) – Pearl Tiara and Fernando De La Cruz pulled away from the field for an impressive upset in the 13th running of the $75,000 Hoosier Breeders Sophomore Stakes, Filly Division, at Indiana Grand Wednesday, June 23. The duo covered the one and one-sixteenth mile event in a time of 1:45.60 to score their second consecutive victory in 2021.
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Shelbyville, IN (June 23, 2021) – Majestic Harbor’s first crop 3-year-old fillies Pearl Tiara and Diamond Solitaire finished first and second in the $77,200 Hoosier Breeders Sophomore Stakes going a mile and one-sixteenth at Indiana Downs. Pearl Tiara is the first stakes winner for California’s Leading Second Crop Sire.
Pear Tiara had prepped for today’s outing with a victory over allowance foes three weeks ago over the sprint distance of five and one-half furlongs. Stretching out for the two turns proved to be no problem. The chestnut miss pressed the pace around the clubhouse turn and took the lead before the first half had been completed. Pearl Tiara was joined around the far turn by Diamond Solitaire, who had suffered a wide trip the entire contest, and the two cropmates left the rest in their wake. The latter gave it her all, but it was the former’s day. Pearl Tiara found another gear and drew away to a commanding victory by nearly nine lengths. Diamond Solitaire was by far the best of the rest as it was another eleven lengths back to the third place finisher.
Pearl Tiara has now won or placed in six of her nine career outings and she has earned $120,314. She races for Loren Hebel-Osborne, Carol W. Osborne, David Osborne, Claudia Pirman, Fred Priman, and Dan Ison and she is trained by Tim Glyshaw. Produced by the winning Mineshaft mare, Pearl Pendant, she was bred by Loren Hebel-Osborne, Carol W. Osborne, and David Osborne.
To download the race video, courtesy of Trakus, click here.
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Courtesy of DRF.com Shelbyville, IN (June 21, 2021) – From the time she began lengthening her stride going around the far turn in her career debut, a six-furlong Indiana Grand sprint race in August 2020, Diamond Solitaire had the look of a route horse. She finished a distant third in that first outing, and when she won by 10 lengths sprinting again in her second start, Diamond Solitaire had the look of an Indiana-bred stakes horse.
Diamond Solitaire, making the third start of her 3-year-old season, stands a strong chance of winning her first stakes when she faces at most nine rivals in the fillies’ division of the $75,000 Hoosier Breeders’ Sophomore Stakes, a 1 1/16-mile test for Indiana-breds.
Trained by Steven Lyster for the Diamond Solitaire Partnership, Diamond Solitaire got in one route race as a 2-year-old, rallying from 12th to finish fourth in the Miss Indiana Stakes last fall. Lyster brought her back into 2021 action going two turns straight off the bat, with Diamond Solitaire finishing second in a one-mile Indiana-bred allowance in the mud. Blinkers went on for her second start of the season, and whether through the equipment change, getting back on a fast track, or simply improving after the comeback run, Diamond Solitaire traveled like a winner while racing down the backstretch and cruised home 2 1/2 lengths best. Diamond Solitaire, by Majestic Harbor, had no pace at which to run in either race this year and should get a more favorable setup Wednesday.
Very Amelia, rail-drawn and stretching out from a sprint to this 1 1/16-mile trip, almost has to show speed, and she enters off a career- and field-best 79 Beyer Speed Figure earned sprinting in Indiana allowance company. The filly’s pair of route races came on a wet main track and on turf, so the jury’s still out on her ability to stay two turns on a fast main track. Pearl Tiara also fits this spot, but until proven otherwise must be regarded suspect at route trips. Mizzen Ash and Taperinea are cross entered in turf allowance races on the Wednesday program.
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Multiple graded stakes winner Warren’s Showtime was foaled and raised at Harris Farms. Here is the story of her latest graded stakes victory.
Courtesy of Santa Anita (June 20, 2021) – Hard-hitting Warren’s Showtime got the early pace pressure she’s been craving the entire meet and took full advantage on closing day Sunday at Santa Anita, as she unfurled an impressive stretch kick to take the Grade III, $100,000 Wilshire Stakes. Owned and bred in California by Ben and Sally Warren, trained by Craig Lewis and ridden by Juan Hernandez, Warren’s Showtime won going away over pacesetter Leggs Galore while stopping the clock of a mile on turf in 1:34.29.
As expected, Leggs Galore was hustled away from the gate by Ricky Gonzalez and she held a 1 ¾ length advantage over Chilean-bred Brooke as the field straightened up for their run up the backside with long-striding Warren’s Showtime ambling along while next to last.
Although Leggs Galore spurted clear, commanding a two-length edge on Brooke at the quarter pole, Warren’s Showtime was in high gear under Hernandez, who wheeled four-wide at the top of the lane. From there, there was no stopping the 4-year-old daughter of Clubhouse Ride, as she broke a six-game losing streak while notching her second career graded stakes victory.
Most recently a close second to Leggs Galore in the statebred Fran’s Valentine Stakes at one mile on turf May 9, Warren’s Showtime was off as the 2-1 favorite in a field of eight fillies and mares three and up and paid $6.00, $3.00 and $2.20.
“She’s a racehorse, she lays it down every time, she gives everything she can give and that’s all you could ask,” said Lewis, who also trained both the sire and dam of the winner. “Juan is a really good rider and he’s a got a good agent, so it works well together. I had a little anxiety, but I felt like today was going to be her day. It looked like there would be a realistic pace…She looks like a million dollars and by the way, she’s close to getting to that point. We’re hoping she does, but she’s just a wonderful filly and gives you what she can.
“…Today was her day. I told Juan to be as patient as he could because we knew they were going to go fast today…I am very excited about the future for Clubhouse Ride. He’s a beast.”
By millionaire Clubhouse Ride, out of Warren’s Grade I stakes winning Affirmative mare Warren’s Veneda, Warren’s Showtime notched her sixth stakes win and improved her overall mark 20-7-2-9. With the winner’s share of $60,000, she increased her earnings to $697,431.
“We’ve been knocking on the door the last few times, we were third, second, just missing the winner, but today I think the pace was the key,” said Hernandez, who registered his second stake win and third overall victory on the day. “That was a good pace for us because she was flying at the end…Today, I kind of moved a little earlier, so when I passed the other filly, I said, ‘I got it.’”
Gallant in defeat, Leggs Galore finished a neck in front of Brooke and paid $3.40 and $2.20 while off at 7-2.
Ridden by Umberto Rispoli, Brooke, who pressed the pace throughout, was third-best and paid $4.00 to show while finishing 1 ¼ lengths better than Ippodamia’s Girl.
Fractions on the Wilshire were 22.45, 45.97, 1:10.04 and 1:22.19.
Live racing will resume at Santa Anita with opening day of the track’s Autumn Meet on Oct. 1.
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Courtesy of Santa Anita Park ARCADIA, Calif. (June 19, 2021)–As Yogi Berra once famously noted, “It’s déjà vu all over again.” Such was the case in the 81st running of the Grade III, $100,000 San Juan Capistrano Stakes on Saturday at Santa Anita, as 7-year-old California-bred gelding Acclimate skipped to a 3 ¾ length victory, replicating his gate to wire score in the 2019 San Juan. Trained by Phil D’Amato, who collected his third consecutive win in Santa Anita’s signature turf marathon, Acclimate was ridden by Ricky Gonzalez, who coaxed a mile and three quarters out of the son of Acclamation in 2:49.74.
With a traditional hillside start, Acclimate went right to the front and had his ears up as he made the dirt crossing at the top of the lane. With a two length advantage around the Club House turn, Acclimate was running easily while pursued by Ward ‘n Jerry and Pillar Mountain in the run up the backside.
With three furlongs to run, Gonzalez stepped on the gas, but eventual runner-up Astronaut was about to make an eye-catching run of his own around the far turn. Although he loomed into contention a quarter mile out, Astronaut was unable to sustain his bid and Acclimate made it look easy as he widened his margin late.
“Just get him in front, nice and comfortable is where he likes to be,” said Gonzalez, who had ridden him to a close second place finish going a mile and one quarter on turf in the Grade II Charles Whittingham Stakes on May 29. “Just keep the other horses away from him and he’s as happy as he could be. I was really happy.
“We barely got beat last time. It was just the head bob, but after the wire he was in front again, so in knew the distance wasn’t going to be a problem for him. Today, I’m just relieved that he got it done so easy.”
Off as the 2-1 favorite in a field of six 3-year-olds and up, Acclimate paid $6.00, $3.80 and $2.60.
Bred by Old English Rancho and Sal and Patsy Berumen, Acclimate, who is out of the Boundary mare Knows No Bounds, is owned by the Ellwood Johnston Family Trust, Timmy Time Racing, LLC and Ken Tevelde, had been winless since winning the Grade II Del Mar Handicap nine starts back on Aug. 17, 2019. With his third graded stakes win in-hand, Acclimate is now 25-7-4-4 and with the winner’s share of $60,000, increased his earnings to $557,872.
“This horse, he’s been through the highs and lows and he’s bounced back,” said an emotional D’Amato, Santa Anita’s leading trainer with 50 wins, 15 of them stakes, second to Bob Baffert’s 17. “He’s just an old warrior and he gave it his all today. It’s just a beautiful thing to watch…Ricky did a masterful job of maintaining the distance and setting those comfortable fractions to have enough horse left. It’s a credit to him and the horse. To dial those fractions in the way he did, Ricky rode like a seasoned veteran at this distance.
“The San Juan Capistrano was my favorite race growing up. When I was a kid coming to the races, this is the race I always came to see. I thought this was an “A” performance for him today and this is a horse I would target for the Del Mar Handicap. He has been lightly raced. We gave him a short break and he has come back better than ever.
Off at 8-1 with Victor Espinoza up, Astronaut finished 1 ¼ lengths in front of 2020 San Juan winner Red King and paid $8.20 and $4.20 while off at 8-1.
Trained by D’Amato and ridden by Umberto Rispoli, Red King was the second choice at 2-1 and paid $2.40 to show while finishing three lengths in front of Ward ‘n Jerry.
Fractions on the race were 48.19, 1:11.56, 1:35.48 and 2:00.30.
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