Mid-Atlantic racing roundup, August 20
Julio Correa. Photo by Jim McCue, Maryland Jockey Club.
Stakes action was here, there, and everywhere, including Laurel Park, Charles Town, and Monmouth.
Following, a quick roundup of what went on:
- It was a stakes-filled afternoon on Maryland Pride day on Saturday. Where Paradise Lay kicked off the action, winning the Star de Naskra Stakes by half a length. He rated off the pace, then rallied in the stretch and outkicked Tappin Cat. The winner is owned by Sagamore Farm, trained by Stanley Hough, and was ridden by Feargal Lynch.
- Julian Pimentel had a great day, with three stakes wins. The first came in the All Brandy Stakes, as the fifteen-day turnaround was no trouble for My Sistersledge. She was well off the pace early, got by leading Ghoul’s Night Out in the last eighth, and held on to win by ¾ of a length. My Sistersledge is very familiar with the Laurel turf course, as she’s won the Maryland Million Ladies each of the past two years. She’s owned by John and Cheryl Banner and trained by Mike Trombetta. Pimentel also scored aboard English Minister in the Find and 3-5 Introduced in the Miss Disco.
- A four-win afternoon on Sunday, including a win in the meet finale with Pantyhose, propelled Julio Correa to the jockey title, with 35 victories. Trevor McCarthy, who had won the past three riding titles at Laurel, finished second, with 30 wins. Sheldon Russell rounded out the trifecta, with 23 scores.
- The trainer race did not have the same drama, as Claudio Gonzalez easily took the training title with 24 wins. Gonzalez won three races over closing weekend, further extending his advantage to 10 wins over second-place Mike Trombetta.
CHARLES TOWN RACES
- A five-win week extended Arnaldo Bocachica’s meet total to 95 victories. His hot streak included a hat trick Thursday night. Bocachica had 11 mounts over the weekend and 10 of them finished first or second; the 11th finished third on Saturday night. Bocachica has 30 wins more than his nearest competitor, Christain Hiraldo.
- Perhaps the highlight of Bocachica’s week was a win aboard K Town Brass in the $50,000 Robert Leavitt Stakes on Saturday night. The 4/1 shot was sent to the lead early, then held off the late challenge of Rush to the Castle by a neck. The three-year-old gelding is owned by James Boyer and Coleswood Farm, and trained by leading trainer Jeff Runco.
- Runco has 71 wins at Charles Town this year, 15 more than Ronney Brown in second. Tim Grams rounds out the top three and is having a strong season, with 42 wins from 164 starts, a 26 percent strike rate.
- Saturday’s Monmouth Oaks was expected to be a stroll in the park for Jaywalk, who was sent off as the 1/5 favorite. However, the Jersey-bred Horologist had other ideas. She rated right off Jaywalk, who was pressured early by Sweet Sami D, then pounced on the second turn. Jaywalk and Horologist battled down the stretch, but Horologist proved the best, pulling clear in the last eighth to win by ¾ of a length at 5/1. The winner is owned by There’s a Chance Stable, trained by John Mazza, and ridden by Angel Suarez. This was Horologist’s second stakes win of the Monmouth season, following a victory in the Smart N Classy Handicap on July 9.
- The class drop proved the trick for Standard Deviation, as he won Sunday’s Jersey Derby as the even-money favorite. He rated in last place in the five-horse field in the early stages, before making a bold four-wide sweep to the lead. Jockey Joe Bravo hand-rode him for the last eighth of a mile, as he coasted to a 3 ¼-length victory. In his prior start, he finished seventh in the Belmont Derby. He’s owned by Klaravich Stables and trained by Chad Brown. This marked the first running of the Jersey Derby since 2013.
- Jockey Maria Maysonett won her first career race on Saturday, piloting 7/5 Malekith in the eleventh race. He was well out of it early, then rallied five wide on the second turn and held sway in the stretch to win by ¾ of a length over I Am the Man. This marked Maysonett’s third mount in the United States, with her first ride coming last Sunday at Monmouth. She’s married to Francisco Maysonett, also a Monmouth regular rider.
- Aided by a four-win afternoon on Saturday, Nik Juarez extended his lead in the jockey standings, with 80 victories so far. Paco Lopez is a clear-cut second with 66 wins, 25 clear of third-place Jose Ferrer.
- Trainer Jorge Navarro won four races over the weekend, giving him 54 victories on the season. Kelly Breen won two races on Sunday, earning him sole control of second place, with 26 triumphs. The top four trainers at Monmouth — a list that also includes Jason Servis (24 wins) and Jose Delgado (15) — all are winning at at least a 27% clip.
LATEST RACING NEWS
Maryland-bred Lewisfield, a multiple stakes winner, is set to make his first start since December in a Saturday allowance at Laurel Park.
Hopeful Growth is among the contenders for Saturday’s G3 Delaware Oaks, and trainer Anthony Margotta is hoping this is the first of an Oaks trio.
Jockey Victor Carrasco, a fixture in Maryland, has decamped to Monmouth Park for the summer in search of new challenges and opportunities.
Laurel Park’s Friday featured allowance includes five runners with at least $400,000 in earnings, topped by seven-time stakes winner Alwaysmining.
Oaklawn stakes winner Piece of My Heart is a slight morning line favorite for Saturday’s G3 Delaware Oaks, which this year is a Kentucky Oaks prep.
Jockey Trevor McCarthy will gun for his second straight Kent Stakes win when he climbs aboard morning line favorite Gufo Saturday at Delaware Park.