4 Virginia-Breds Compete in Stakes Races on Presidents Day

Four Virginia-bred horses celebrated Presidents Day this past Monday by competing in different stake races around the country, and one of the quartet got to the winners circle down south.

All Call, a 5 year old Cowboy Cal gelding, got the better of 11 other foes in the $50,000 Little Michigan Stakes at Florida’s Gulfstream Park. Bred by the Morgan’s Ford Farm, the winner left the gate unhurried and saved ground throughout the backstretch, angled out at the quarter pole, and swung into action in the one mile event. Sitting eighth at the half, rider Julien Leparoux directed All Call to a four wide move in the final turn, cleared the field quickly after and crossed 3 1/4 lengths ahead of Cement Clement. Out of the Honor Grades mare, Honorett, the victor finished in 1:35.67 and paid $9.20 as the third favorite.

Of the remaining trio that competed on holiday Monday, American Dubai had a very respectable third in a key Derby prep at Oaklawn Park — the $500,000 Southwest Stakes (Gr. III). A large field of 14 went postward and the three year old E Dubai colt broke sharp, chased the leader early and settled into second. After staying near the front throughout most of the 1 1/16th miles test, American Dubai ended up 3 1/4 lengths shy at the finish as Suddenbreakingnews came on in the stretch to triumph. The show” position finisher was bred by Mrs. C. Oliver Iselin, earned $50,000 for the effort, and is out of the Bates Motel mare, Smash Review.

Dannhauser, winning the Bert Allen Stakes at Colonial Downs in 2013. Photo courtesy Coady Photography.

Dannhauser, winning the Bert Allen Stakes at Colonial Downs in 2013. Photo courtesy Coady Photography.

Rounding out the day’s activity, the Larry Johnson-bred Spun Cupper took fifth in Laurel’s $75,000 Wide Country Stakes while the classy 8 year old Dannhauser ended up eighth in the $60,000 Old Man Eloquent Stakes at Gulfstream. Fresh off a maiden special weight score on New Years Day, Spun Copper finished six lengths behind victorious Great Soul. The 3 year old filly is by Hard Spun out of Sky Copper by Sky Mesa. The Kathleen O’Connell trained Dannhauser never really fired in his 11 horse field Monday afternoon. In December, the Johannesburg gelding captured a $32,000 allowance race at Tampa Downs and prior, took a third in the $60,000 Bert Allen Stakes. Dannhauser was bred by the Audley Farms and is out of the Smart Strike mare, Hatpin.

Up Hill Battle captures a 5 1/2 furlong maiden claiming sprint at Laurel February 12, 2016

Up Hill Battle captures a 5 1/2 furlong maiden claiming sprint at Laurel February 12, 2016

Two days earlier, Uphill Battle (pictured here, courtesy of Jim McCue) connected in a $27,000 maiden claiming race with a tight victory over Paradise Bird at Laurel. Bred by the Johnson Brothers Stable, the 3 year old daughter of Street Magician battled for top spot with the runner-up throughout the entire 5 1/2 furlong race and ended up a head better in 1:06.90. Trained by Mike Trombetta and ridden by Julian Pimintel, Uphill battle is out of the Saint Ballado mare, Pennyhill.

Earlier in the week, Rapid Rythym won a 5 1/2 furlong claiming sprint at Fair Grounds and earned the winner’s share of a $23,000 purse. The 4 year old daughter of Successful Appeal, sent off as the betting choice in a field of eight, won by a length in 1:05.20. Though she was last at the 3/8ths marker, Rapid Rythym raced inside on the turn then moved out under a drive in the upper stretch and split horses in the final furlong. Bred by the Lazy Lane Farms, the filly is by Patriot Miss out of Quiet American.