Titoschangedmyluck, Simply Super win Colonial stakes

Apprentice rider Jeiron Barbosa earned the first stakes win of his career Saturday at Laurel Park, steering Music Amore to an upset in the Searching Stakes.

He enjoyed that experience so much that he came right back and grabbed a second stakes win Tuesday at Colonial Downs. Barbosa steered Titoschangedmyluck between horses in the lane, and the Social Inclusion filly powered through to register a 13-1 upset in the $150,000 Keswick Stakes for two-year-old fillies that are Virginia-bred, -sired, or -certified.

The Keswick was preceded two races earlier by the boys’ version of the race, the Hickory Tree. That went to Simply Super under pilot Horacio Karamanos.

Titoschangedmyluck entered the Keswick winless in two prior tries. She ran second on debut at 28-1 odds, but in her follow-up, she was bumped and lost rider Maddie Rowland.

“She was a little beat up [after the second start] so we gave her a little bit of time,” trainer James “Chuck” Lawrence said. “She actually blossomed in that little bit of time.”

When the gates opened in the Keswick, morning line favorite Naval Empire, a winner at first asking over the strip, broke outward and a bit slowly and never really got involved en route to an eighth-place finish. Meanwhile, Barbosa had Titoschangedmyluck, a homebred for Lawrence and Matthew Schera, in mid-flight, a few lengths behind longshot leader Bee Mountain, off at 33-1.

Bee Mountain took the field through an opening quarter-mile in 22.30 seconds, was up by a couple at the head of the lane, and still held a narrowing advantage after a 45.68-second half-mile as Karamanos, riding her for Ferris Allen, tried to nurse his mount along.

Briefly in upper stretch, it looked like Barbosa would steer Titoschangedmyluck outside of the leader, but as that one drifted out slightly, an opening appeared between horses. For a moment, four runners – Cocktail Dreaming, Rebel Consort, Titoschangedmyluck, and Bee Mountain – were stacked up across the track.

But Titoschangedmyluck soon broke away from those runners, going on to win by 2 ½ lengths in 58.59 seconds for five furlongs over a fast main track. Rebel Consort, off at 37-1, finished second, while Livana (12-1) rallied along the outside for third. Post time favorite Cocktail Dreaming finished fourth.

Titoschangedmyluck paid $29,80 and topped an exacta that returned $315.70 for a one-dollar wager and a trifecta that was good for $2,791.20.

Two races prior, the bettors figured the Hickory Tree to be a two-horse race, and they were right. Post time favorite Heldish (4-5) and second choice Simply Super (3-2) hooked up with about three-eighths of a mile to go and were never separated by more than a half-length the rest of the way. 

Heldish, under Sheldon Russell, led most of the way, but a late surge put Simply Super on top by a half-length at the wire. Running time for the five furlongs was a sharp 56.74 seconds, and those two runners were more than five clear of the rest.

“I’m so happy to win, especially at Colonial Downs,” said winning rider Horacio Karamanos. “I had to wait for the moment and ask him when I needed it.”

Simply Super now has two wins from four career starts for trainer Michael Maker and owners Maxis Stable. The Maryland-bred Super Saver colt now has earnings of over $127,000.

Jockey Jeiron Barbosa celebrates as Titoschangedmyluck wins the Keswick Stakes. Photo Coady Photography.