Carmelina, Going Up Capture $150,000 Dirt Sprint Stakes Saturday at Colonial Downs

A pair of Pennsylvania-bred/Virginia-Certified 2-year-olds made their Colonial Downs debuts August 5 in $150,000 5-furlong dirt stakes, and both came away with victories — though they occurred in very different fashion.

Cash is King and LC Racing’s Carmelina and Robert and Tammy Klimasewski’s Going Up got their pictures taken respectively in the Keswick Stakes for fillies and Hickory Tree Stakes for males. 

Carmelina captured the 5-furlong Keswick Stakes for 2-year-old fillies August 5 at Colonial (Coady Photography).

The former departed from post position eight in a nine-horse field, settled into third after the start then surged on the outside just before the wire to edge M3 Racing Stable’s Beachfront Breeze and No Guts No Glory Farm’s Remember Me. The Maximus Mischief filly crossed one-half length the best in :58.39 with Mychel Sanchez up. 

Robert Reid Jr. trains the winner who is now 2-for-3 with earnings of $134,800. She dominated while breaking her maiden June 18 at Parx and came to New Kent fresh off a fifth place finish in the Grade 3 Schuylerville Stakes at Saratoga.

Carmelina winning rider Mychel Sanchez and trainer Robert Reid Jr. are shown after the big win.

“You never expect to win especially asking her to come back for a third start in a month and a half,” said Reid. “She shipped all the way from Saratoga just two days ago so it was a lot of work to get here but she came through. Mychel gave a perfect ride. I raced here a bit 20 years ago so initially I was happy with an outside post,” added Reid. “But I got to look where the gate was at the 5/8ths pole and it starts almost right on top of the turn. Mychel broke her sharp though and got her tucked in so she didn’t lose too much ground on the turn.”

As for what’s next, Reid echoed the same thought his rider brought back after the race. “Mychel said the same thing we were thinking — that she wants to go a little farther, so I think a 7/8ths might be perfect.”

Going Up authored a gate-to-wire performance in the Hickory Tree Stakes with Ronnie Allen up (Coady Photography).

Going Up on the other hand did not need a late rally to capture the Hickory Tree. The Mineshaft gelding went to gate-to-wire in beating seven other freshmen males by a comfortable 6-3/4 lengths in :57.04. Jockey Ronnie Allen directed the winning effort for trainer Ron Potts. KP Racing Stables’ Jubawithatwist finished second and Ray Pennington’s King Kontie, the betting choice, was third. 

Going Up broke his maiden May 31 at Presque Isle then followed with a third in the Victoria Stakes at Woodbine July 16.               

“He’s been training well, he’s a cool dude and he takes everything in stride,” said co-owner Tammy Klimasewski. “Nothing bothers him. He acts like he’s been around the world three times. We couldn’t ask for a better trainer and rider. We have a great team.”

The winning connections of Going Up had to wait out a double objection to confirm their well-earned victory (Coady Photography).

“The result was not a surprise,” added Robert Klimasewski. “His mother was a great racehorse and he has dirt pedigree on both sides up and down. He’s been known to not let anybody go by him so when he gets out on the lead, he’s really tough, even in the mornings when they’re working. He outworks everyone and just won’t let anybody get by him.”

Colonial Downs returns to action Thursday with a 9-race card beginning at 1:30 PM. Next Saturday’s (August 12) “Festival of Racing” program will be drawn Wednesday and features three graded stakes — the G1 Arlington Million, G1 Beverly D and G2 Secretariat Stakes.