Mid-Atlantic racing roundup, February 5, 2020

by | Feb 6, 2020 | Breaking, Racing, Regionwide, Top Stories

Carlos Mancilla

Sue Mancilla (far right) and husband Carlos Mancilla (second from right) celebrate a win by Top Me Off, with Charlie Marquez up, at Laurel Park. Photo by The Racing Biz.

Plenty of racing action took place throughout the Mid-Atlantic this past week.

Here’s your five-minute read to get caught up on all of it:


  • Factor It In may be a late bloomer, but he’s more than made up for lost time. He improved to 2-for-2 in 2020 in Thursday’s feature, winning a n/w3x allowance optional claiming race by 3 ¾ lengths. Feargal Lynch smartly rated off a three-pronged speed duel in the early stages, then made a five-wide move on the turn. It took a little while for Factor It In to get going, but once he switched leads, he was able to power away. So far, he’s won five times from twelve starts, while earning more than $150,000. Carlos Mancilla trains for owner Michael Schefferes. 
  • Shipping from Parx, Senior Investment proved victorious in a n/w3x allowance optional claiming event going long on Friday. He rated just off favored leader Jefazo on the inside, and when that rival gave way, Senior Investment was right there to pick up the pieces. He cruised under the wire 1 ¼ lengths in front, going 1 1/16 miles in 1:43.71. Emmanuel Esquivel was in the saddle for owner Richard Malouf and trainer Scott Lake. Senior Investment apparently likes it in Maryland; he was third in the 2017 Preakness Stakes.
  • Friday also saw the on-air debut of new analyst Naomi Tukker, who appeared alongside Stan Salter and Keith Feustle. Tukker was a member of the Godolphin Flying Start program from 2017-2019, and previously worked in television production for NYRA.
  • Bye Bye Bertie continued a hot start to her career on Saturday, winning her third straight race in the featured n/w2x allowance optional claiming race. She got a great trip rating off the early leader, then moved on the turn and grinded past for the length win. She’s now 3-for-4 lifetime, and it wouldn’t be a surprise at all to see her in stakes company soon. The 4-year-old filly is owned by Romans, Spring, and Zoom and Fish Stables, trained by Hamilton Smith, and was ridden by Trevor McCarthy.
  • McCarthy has assumed a commanding lead in the jockey standings, winning 17 times from 96 rides. Sheldon Russell and Carol Cedeno are the only other jockeys with double-digit wins.
  • A five-win week for Claudio Gonzalez keeps him well out in front with 20 winners. Jamie Ness, Carlos Mancilla, and John Robb are all tied for second, with 9 victories each. Mancilla is the hottest of the trio; his wins have come from just 21 starters.


  • Thursday night was a showcase for Charles Town’s leading jockeys, as Denis Araujo and Arnaldo Bocachica combined to win five out of eight races. Araujo turned in a pair of winners, taking race 3 with Zippy Jo and race 6 aboard Charitable Rose. However, Bocachica one-upped him with a hat trick. The winning rides were with Swiss Sunrise in race 1, Lou’s Chardonnay in race 4, and Lady Madison in the 8th race.
  • Aaron’s Tap worked a great trip to win Friday’s feature, an open West Virginia-bred allowance race. The favored gelding stalked the pace early in the 4 ½ furlong contest, drew alongside the early leaders turning for home, and drew clear for a 1 ½ length win in 51.24. Bocachica and leading trainer Jeff Runco teamed up for the win, for owner Smart Angle LLP. 
  • That race began a natural hat trick for Bocachica on Friday’s program. He also won the 5th race with Star of Night, followed by the 6th race aboard Gallanor. Boca’s 25 wins are more than double the 12 amassed by Araujo, who is second.


  • After a brief sojurn to Laurel, Fix Me a Sandwich returned to his favorite track on Monday, and won his fourth race in a row over the Parx oval. Sent off as the 1-2 favorite in the $16,000 claiming event, he broke on top, as he usually does. From there, he coasted to a 9 3/4 length victory, going 6 ½ furlongs in 1:16.62. Frankie Pennington was the winning rider. Going into the race, he was owned by John Fanelli and Joseph Taylor, but he was claimed out of the race by Big E Stables LLC and Philip Aristone.
  • Later on the Monday card, Promised Storm pulled off an 11/1 upset in the featured n/w2x allowance optional claiming race for fillies and mares. She rated three-wide off the pace, then bid for the lead nearing the far turn and drew off to a 2-length victory. This was her first win of the year, in her second start. She’s owned by Jennifer Trueheart, trained by Regina Brennan, and was ridden by Luis Ocasio.
  • Mychel Sanchez leads the way in the jockey standings, with 13 victories, two ahead of Angel Rodriguez. Joseph Taylor is on top in the trainer race, with eight wins. Four trainers are right in behind, with six wins each.


About The Author

John Piassek

John Piassek is currently the communications manager for the Maryland Horse Breeders Association. He's written for the Racing Biz since 2015, and has also written about mid-Atlantic racing for Danonymous Racing and the Daily Gallop. In the past, he's worked for America's Best Racing, Freehold Raceway, Tioga Downs, Saratoga Race Course, and Monmouth Park. He graduated from Loyola University Maryland in 2018 with a degree in marketing, and is a member of the inaugural Maryland Thoroughbred Career Program class of 2017. Find John on twitter: @theyreoff.

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