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Friday, June 23, 2017


N.J-bred Irish War Cry second in the Belmont, Mor Spirit wins $1.2 million Metropolitan

At the top of the stretch, it looked like Irish War Cry was going to win the $1.5 million G1 Belmont Stakes, but Belmont's long stretch and the mile and a half journey began to take its toll, and Tapwit caught and passed Irish War Cry to go on to win by 2 lengths, with Patch, a son of Union Rags, third, 5 3/4 lengths back.

Mor SpiritMor Spirit (photo by Patricia McQueen)Pa-bred Mor Spirit, bred by the Elkstone Group, LLC, owned by Michael Lund Peterson and trained by Bob Baffert, won the $1.2 million Metropolitan Stakes  for 3 year olds and up at 1 mile on the June 10 stakes filled afternoon, and ran Baffert's incredible skein of victories to four, with a combined worth of $2.55 million.

Tapwit is owned by Bridgewood Farm, Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners and Robert V. LaPenta, and trained by Todd Pletcher, and he is by Tapit out of Appealing Zophie, by Successful Appeal.

N.J.-bred Irish War Cry, trained by Graham Motion at the Fair Hill Training Center in Fair Hill, Md., was bred and is owned by Isabelle de Tomaso, a member of the prominent New Jersey Haskell family and a daughter of Amory Haskell.

Most members of the Haskell family were at Belmont for the race, but Bambi Glaccum, a niece of de Tomaso, had to be at Plantation Field where she serves as secretary of the events held there.

"We watched it live streaming from the secretary's stand," said Glaccum. "I began at nine a.m. to make sure we could get it on the computer. Luckily the event was over by the time of the Belmont. It was quite exciting."

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Amy Rowe’s For Goodness Sake and Buttonwood Farm’s All The Way Jose won featured races at Fair Hill Spring meet

FAIR HILL, Md.—Elizabeth Voss saddled the winners of four races at the Fair Hill Spring Races on May 27, but it was Paddy Young and Jonathan Sheppard who trained the winners of the two featured races. While Young was still in hospital recovering from a serious head injury suffered at Radnor on May 20, he was listed as the trainer of Amy Taylor Rowe’s For Goodness Sake (Ire), who won the $50,000 Iris Ann Coggins Memorial Hurdle Stakes race.

amy taylor roweAmy Taylor RowePaddy’s wife Leslie is normally listed as trainer, but Paddy has a special interest in For Goodness Sake, according to Rowe, so they decided to list him as trainer.

“That’s a bit of a tear-jerker,” said Rowe.

But luckily, Young is now recovering, and on June 9, Leslie Young posted on Facebook, “Today was a good day. Paddy Young got to leave the ICU room around 2ish...he is still at Paoli and might be able to go to Bryn Mawr Rehab either tomorrow or Saturday. Waiting on last Doctor to sign him off....#WeAreGettingThere.”

“The big race at Fair Hill last year was the Valentine Memorial, and I won that with Baserati (Brz) last year,” said Rowe. “So it’s exciting to win the feature two years in a row.”

“ I bought her late last fall,” said Rowe of her 5-year-old who finished fifth in her first race in this country in the Margaret Currey Henley Stakes at Iroquois Steeplechase on May 13. “She’s Irish, so she likes this going.”

It was a chilly day with intermittent rain showers at Fair Hill, and the going was deep enough that the timber fences in the infield were eliminated from the timber stakes.

Mark Beecher, who trained and rode the winner of the timber race, said that Fair Hill officials decided to take out the fences in the infield after the jumbotron was moved across the field the day before and it had dug in really deep.

There was a big crowd for the first half of the day, as the weather forecast had been for clearer skies, but as it got chillier and rainier the road to the gates and the parking field was solid with people leaving.

Despite that, there was still a fair number of people that remained to the end.

For Goodness Sake beat Mrs. Thomas Voss’ Swoop, trained by her daughter Elizabeth and ridden by Bernard Dalton, by 2 ¾ lengths.

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2 Pa-breds win on undercards of Black-Eyed Susan and Preakness

Just Too Much, bred by Dr. William J. Solomon, and Spring Quality, bred by George Strawbridge, each won an allowance race on the undercards of the Black-Eyed Susan and Preakness Stakes on May 19, 20 at Pimlico Race Track in Maryland.

Union Rags’ get apparently don’t like sloppy tracks, and that affected five of them on Oaks and Derby days, and it got Chadds Ford Stable’s Dancing Rags in the G2 Black-Eyed Susan, too.

The Black-Eyed Susan was the 11th race on the card on May 19, and it was run after a earlier downpour had soaked the track.

Dancing Rags clearly hated the sloppy going and finished ninth behind long shot winner Actress, owned by Gary and Mary West, who paid $27.50 to win.

Just Too Much Photo by Patricia McQueenJust Too Much Photo by Patricia McQueenHelen K. Groves Confederate, trained by Michael Matz, fared better on the muddy track in the fourth race on the same day, finishing second by ¾ length in the $52,000 Allowance Optional Claiming race for 3-year-olds to Lady Sheila Stable’s Super Dude, trained by Linda Rice.

Just Too Much, a 5-year-old bay mare trained by Lynn Ashby and ridden by Travis Wales in the 12th race, also on May 19, on a turf course graded as good, won the five furlong $52,000 Allowance for Fillies and Mares by a head.

Sycamore Lane Stable’s Just Too Much was bred by Dr. William Joseph Solomon at his Pin Oak Lane Farm and is by Pin Oak’s Coastal Storm out of Solomon’s Just Not Enough, by Sultry Song.

Coastal Storm’s stud fee now is $5,000, but at the time Just Not Enough was bred, it was $2,500, and Just Too Much has earned $87,930, averaging $6,281 per start, and delivering a very good return on the stud fee.

“Since then, Coastal Storm has sired some pretty nice runners,” said Solomon.

Just Too Much has started 14 times, with five wins, one second and five thirds.

Solomon still owns Just Not Enough, who has a yearling by Corinthian and is in foal to Lord Shanakill.

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Hendriks-trained Mystic Strike wins Radnor Hunt Cup

MALVERN, Pa.—Upland Partners’ Mystic Strike won the $30,000 Radnor Hunt Cup timber race on a disqualification after being beaten a nose by Irvin Naylor’s Ebanour (Ire) on a day when falls left two jockeys badly hurt and two other jockeys suffered freak falls but luckily were unhurt at the Radnor Hunt Races in Malvern, Pa., on May 20.

rickyhendricksandeveledyardRicky Hendricks and Eve LedyardRicky Hendriks took over the training of Mystic Strike after his former trainer, Todd McKenna, was suspended for kicking the horse, apparently colicing, in the stomach at the Maryland Hunt Cup.

After losing by a short nose, Mystic Strike’s jockey Mark Beecher claimed foul at the last fence on Ebanour, ridden by Gustav Dahl.

“Ebanour came in on top of my horse at the last fence,” said Beecher. “The horses made contact, and I hit my knee on the wing.”

Ebanour was about a half length in front over the last fence, but a fast closing Mystic Strike, despite the interference at the last fence, came within a nose of winning.

markbeecherMark Beecher“I never sat on him before,” said Beecher. There was no pace in the race, but we were getting 10 pounds from Ebanour.”

I’ve had Mystic Strike for two weeks,” said Hendriks. “We ran him in the flat race at Willowdale, and he finished mid-pack. I had Ross Geraghty school him before this race. I didn’t want to make Mark come up all the way from Maryland just for a school.”

“Wildcatter, owned by Armata Stable, trained by Elizabeth Voss and ridden by Jack Doyle, was another ½ length back in third.


PADDY YOUNG, looking for his 199th victory over fences, rode Stewart Strawbridge’s King’s Apollo, trained by Sanna Neilson, but King’s Apollo fell about 2 miles into the 3 ¼ mile race.

Young, 41, suffered a severe head injury and a concussion when a horse in the field behind the faller hit Young, and he was transported to hospital, where he remains as of May 30.

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Orchestra Leader and Winter House win at High Hope

Keri Brion rode S. Bruce Smart’s Orchestra Leader, trained by Jimmy Day, to win the $30,000 Allowance Optional Claiming Hurdle at High Hope Steeplechase in Lexington, Ky., on May 21.

Keri Brion on Orchestra LeaderKeri Brion on Orchestra Leader in a prep race for High Hope (photo by Liz Callar)“They let me get an easy lead, until about three fences from home” said Brion. “I had never ridden at High Hope and I made a mistake. I let Ross Geraghty up my inside at the second from last, but Orchestra Leader took off when he saw the other horse. He out jumped him.”

“I had a claim of foul against me,” said Brion. “But when they looked at the film, it was Ross, who was hitting his horse left handed, who drifted into my horse.”

Orchestra Leader won by ½ length over Irvin Naylor’s Jack Frost (GB), trained by Cyril Murphy and ridden by Jack Doyle, with Swansea Mile, owned by Rosbrian Farm, trained by Ricky Hendriks and ridden by Geraghty, third.

This was Brion’s third win on Orchestra Leader following wins at Foxfield Fall last year and Foxfield Spring this year, but Hendriks and George Mahoney claimed the horse at High Hope.

Hendriks saddled Rosbrian Farm’s Winter House (GB), ridden by Geraghty, to win the $25,000 Maiden Hurdle by 3 ½ lengths over Price-Richardson Stable’s Indigo Heart, trained by Arch Kingsley and ridden by Willie McCarthy.

“I bought him at Doncaster Sales for George Mahoney,” said Hendriks. “This was his third start over fences. He’d run on the flat in England. He won a nice flat race at Aiken earlier this spring, then at Charleston he finished mid-pack and was fourth at Foxfield.”

Hendriks also saddled Morning Star Farm’s Needle in the Hay to finish second by ½ length under Geraghty to Thistledown Farm’s Indy’s Legacy, trained by Desmond Fogarty and ridden by Willie McCarthy, in the $20,000 Ratings Handicap Hurdle.

“Needle ran very well,” said Hendriks. “I was delighted with him.”

Check Mark Stable’s Mr. Lickety, trained by Richard Valentine and ridden by Doyle, won the $15,000 Jay Trump Timber by 13 ¾ lengths over Mrs. S.K. Johnston’s Dye Fore, trained by Jack Fisher and ridden by Sean McDermott.

The Horse of Delaware Valley

Editor: Sara Cavanagh

Advertising: Ginny Jenkins

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