- As advertised by Barclay Tagg, Showing Up (Strategic Mission) loves the turf. He pocketed a fairly easy $600,000 for owners Roy and Gretchen Jackson in the Colonial Turf Cup, tracking down daylight leader Kip Deville for a three length win. Unlike the Jackson’s Barbaro, who went from turf to dirt, Showing Up is going the other way, and who knows, maybe he’ll sweep the Grand Slam of Grass and earn for the owners the $5 million bonus that they wouldn’t have gotten anyway even if Barbaro had won the Triple Crown. His 6-1 morning line was a pipe dream, and he was a pretty solid favorite at 5-2.
For the Jacksons, it's pretty unbelievable that they are able to enjoy Showing Up as "consolation" after losing Barbaro to injury.
"I'm pretty speechless," Gretchen Jackson finally stammered. "It seems like a composite of 35 years of racing in six months of all that could happen."One of the many bummers about Barbaro’s injury is the fact that we knew he could run on the turf, and that opened up some intriguing possibilities, including the Arc, reportedly mentioned as a desire of Ms. Jackson. Plus, we’ll never know how good he could have been on the grass. The general feeling, which was expressed by Edgar Prado, was that he was a better horse on the grass. But who knows, maybe the Jacksons will make it to the Arc with this one instead.
"We don't know why this is happening," Roy Jackson added, "but we know you have to enjoy the good times." [Washington Post]
- Latent Heat was all kind of awesome taking his allowance race over a sloppy track at Belmont. Indeed, Highland Cat’s came off the dirt, so good job of weather forecasting by Bill Turner, who apparently tunes into the Weather Channel on a regular basis. Latent Heat may be the only one of the horses in California that ran in one or more of the Derby preps there to have won out of state. He was 1-5 (and was 3-10 in his other win).
And perhaps he would like to try the grass as well. He’s by Maria’s Mon out of True Flare (Capote), a graded winner on the grass in France and here (the Grade 2 San Clemente and Rare Perfume), and a half sister to four other horses who have won grass stakes here or abroard (both in the case of War Zone.
Frankel also took the sixth race with Cotton King (Awesome Again), a Stronach-bred graduating in his second start. His prior was back in September, a 7th place finish in a race won by Political Force, subsequently second in the Nashua to Bluegrass Cat (and the last time he's been seen on the track in the afternoon). Cotton King's 417 Tomlinson mud number was easily the highest in the field. He was 20-1 in his debut, and nearly 8-1 here.
Extreme Supreme (Deputy Minister) was second, also at 7-1; another sharp one off a layoff for John Ward, and as I noted in this post, his second dam is a half to Roberto, so watch out for this one on the grass.
- Frankel didn’t fare so well in the G2 Beverly Hills at Hollywood on Saturday, in which his Dream Lady ran dead last. The winner, Memorette (Memo) is another horse who has made a successful surface switch. She competed in the three-year old filly division on the dirt early last year before trying the grass in the Hollywood Oaks, and after not winning since December 2004, got her second in three starts, as well as her first graded stakes win here.
And how about Film Maker (Dynaformer); they don’t make them much tougher than her these days. In her debut as a six-year old, she took the All Along at Colonial in a dominant three length win. It was her 18th consecutive appearance in a graded stakes win, and her sixth win in that sequence to go along with nine in-the-money finishes, wow. Two of those races were second and third place finishes in the BC Filly and Mare Turf, and you can bet that she’s headed there again to give it another shot. The first registered foal out of the Mr. Prospector mare Miss Du Bois, Film Maker has an unraced juvenile half-sister named South Ocean Blvd (Capote) and an unnamed yearling full brother. [Brisnet]
- Todd Pletcher is planning an invasion of Iowa. He plans to send no less than six horses to Prairie Meadows for the Iowa Festival of Racing, and will be competing in that state for the very first time. "The schedule just worked out for us.....We have a stable at Churchill Downs for the first time, and that makes it a little easier ."
Pletcher said he plans to send Master Command for the Cornhusker Breeders' Cup; Circle the World for the Iowa Derby; Bishop Court Hill for the Iowa Sprint; Cowgirls Don't Cry for the Prairie Gold and Lassie and Bella Shambrock for the Prairie Gold Juvenile. [Des Moines Register]