Jubawithatwist back on top in Coin Collector

A brief, heavy rain shower passed through the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia late Saturday afternoon and left the racing surface at Charles Town in sealed and sloppy. But the early rains could hardly dampen the enthusiasm surrounding the featured $75,000 Coin Collector Stakes for state-bred three-year-olds, which attracted a stellar field of sophomore boys.

Named in honor of a two-time West Virginia Breeders Classic hero from the early 1990s, the Coin Collector featured a talented group that would have made its namesake proud. All seven of the starters had been the odds-on favorite in their previous outing, and they were a combined 14-for-22 at the race’s 4 ½-furlong distance.

But only one – Jubawithatwist – had previously won a stake.

Having drawn the favorable outside slot while being able to face three-year-olds for the first time this year, Jubawithatwist was eventually made the 7-5 favorite for owner-trainer Kristy Petty, while Marshall Peanut was the 5-2 second choice for owner-trainer-breeder Michael Atkins. Pork Chop Pete, an impressive debut winner who then failed as the odds-on choice while facing winners and trying two turns for the first time most recently, was the 9-2 third choice for trainer Javier Contreras.

When the gates opened, Pork Chop Pete and Marshall Peanut broke in tandem and to the lead while Time to Rock settled into third. Jubawithatwist, Indicator and You Bet a Fortune reserved off the torrid early pace. 

Pork Chop Pete and Marshall Peanut dueled for command down the backside and by the opener in 21.98. They were still engaged turning for home when several of the genuine closers began to uncork their late bids.

Pork Chop Pete disposed of Marshall Peanut approaching the head of the lane. Meanwhile, a three-wide Jubawithatwist launched his rally while Indicator, wider still, also revved up a run.  

Jubawithatwist avoided any real trouble and closed willingly in the lane to prevail by a half-length while getting the 4 1/2 furlongs in 51.98. Pork Chop Pete held the place spot in a game effort, while Indicator finished third in his first stakes out and first try against winners. Marshall Peanut faded to fourth late.

“Having the outside tonight was such a big advantage,” Larrosa said. “He had been drawing inside and getting stuk down in there. Tonight, I knew there was a lot of speed inside me and I could just let him settle and then make his run late. He really does finish strong. He’s definitely a real nice horse.”


A sophomore son of Juba owned and trained by Kristy Petty and bred by the late John A. Casey, who also owned and bred the race’s namesake, Jubawithatwist notched his first win in three seasonal tries and now owns five wins and over $200,000 banked from nine career outings.He gave an early indication that he does not intend to yield his title as state-bred champion of his generation without a fight.     

Jubawithatwist inched past Pork Chop Pete to win the Coin Collector. Photo by Coady Photography.

“I was so happy to see him draw the outside for this race,” Petty said. “Plus, he was able to finally race against straight three-year-olds. Ideally, 4 1/2 furlongs is not his best distance, but this race gave him a chance to race three-year-olds. He’s going to be better in the two-turn races this summer and fall. Then maybe next year we’ll stretch him out a little more and try the big one [West Virginia Breeders Classic at nine furlongs].”

One race earlier, Waterloo Rose (Wilfredo Santiago) forged a 13-1 surprise in a two-turn allowance for fillies and mares when she rallied from well off the pace and widest of all on the far turn and through the lane en route to a 4 1/2-length score. A six-year-old Flat Out mare trained by Tonya O’Neill for owner Laughing Rabbit Stable, Waterloo Rose notched her second straight score, third win in six seasonal tries and now owns a 5-4-5 slate and $77,000 banked from 43 career outings after getting the 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:19.90 as an overlooked outsider.

A race before that, Soul Catcher (Arnaldo Bocachica) scored as the 5-2 second choice when he rallied from just off the pace and overhauled a game Caffeinennicotine to win by 1 ½ lengths. A sophomore son of Mo Town trained by Jeff Runco for owner David Raim, Soul Catcher notched his first win in four seasonal tries and now owns a 2-2-1 slate and just shy of $50,000 in purse earnings from eight career outings after getting the seven furlongs in 1:26.65 over the sealed, sloppy surface.

“He’s going to be a nice one,” Runco said. “David gave a lot of money [$95,000] for him as a yearling. We’ve had high hopes for him all along. He had a breathing issue last year and he had nasal surgery, and they ended up taking out about a golf ball-sized tumor out of his sinus. He’s come back really good. We’re just going to give him some time to run through his conditions.”

Runco also noted that his top trainee, Coastal Mission, is slated to run Saturday in the Grade 3, $100,000 Maryland Sprint on the Preakness Stakes undercard at Pimlico. Coastal Mission, the reigning West Virginia-bred horse of the year and full-brother to former Maryland Million Sprint champion Lewisfield, captured the $100,000 Frank Whiteley Stakes at Laurel Park last out as the 3-2 favorite and boasts 12 wins and $655,000 banked from 19 career outings.