Saturday September 7th Hastings preview
One of the biggest days on the calendar is upon us this afternoon as the most talented horses on the grounds will compete for purses of $450,000 in total. The $250,000 B.C. Derby is the premier event but not to be outdone will be the best three year old fillies running for $100,000 in the B.C. Oaks. Completing the stakes action is the $50,000 Delta Colleen and the $50,000 S.W. Randall Plate. All four stakes will be contested at a mile and an eighth.
First up will be the older mares in race six as nine will go postward in the $50,000 Delta Colleen.
Barry Lee and Concepcion Mabanta’s CONVERGENT will take on stakes mares again after an unsuccessful try on BC Cup day. She is a solid distance runner but with no high claiming or allowance races filling going lo she is going to take on the big girls again. Learie Seecharan rides for trainer Frank Ma.
Mort Hall, Praven Sorensen and Phil Hall’s BEAR was a bargain buy for just $3,500 at the Hastings Paddock Sale earlier this year. She has three wins and two runner-up efforts in five starts since the sale and recently was second to HERE’S HANNAH in the Distaff early last month. She going well so don’t count her out Sahin Civaci is back in town and he will be aboard.
Curtis Landry’s RAIDER has been a gem of consistency throughout her excellent career. She will likely go over the $300,000 mark in earnings after todays race. She is a versatile filly that can adapt to any pace situation which is a big plus. She is a top chance. Rico Walcott is in from Edmonton to ride for trainer Greg Tracy.
George Gilbert’s GOOD LUCK TO YOU had been having a great season prior to her last trip over the mountains to Century Mile. She did have a valid excuse as she was squeezed out and bumped hard at the start. Her previous five races were all solid and if any of those efforts is put forth today then she has a good shot. Enrique Gonzalez is in the tack for trainer Phil Hall.
Cherie Moryson, Mark and Larry Fielding’s NOTIS THE JEWELL got off to a slow beginning this year as she came in late and been to trying to catch up with a tough division of older mares. She has a solid record at the nine furlong distance and if she can get a contested pace then she could make things interesting in the stretch. Jose Asencio rides.
The Foundation Stables SAILINGFORTHESUN has raced well in her four starts this year but hasn’t been able to knock off the best mares in this tough older division. She almost pulled off the upset last fall at this distance and will need a similar performance if she is to win. She is at her best when on the lead going long and perhaps that will be the strategy today. Amadeo Perez will take instructions from trainer Rob Anderson.
The RNH Stable’s YUKON BELLE has tried to take her show on the road in order to get a much needed victory but was not the case in her last two starts. Her Seattle start was a mess as she would not load into the gate and then the fight was on and after a couple of minutes she loaded but was obviously not on her game and finished well back. She ran better in Edmonton but suffered from a wide trip and could only rescue fifth money. Hopefully the home cooking will help her. Antonio Reyes rides for Barbara Heads.
The Deltin Stable and Ed Welsh’s DAZ LIN DAWN has had a good summer out in Edmnton winning two starts back which was her first trip to the winners circle in a couple of years. She still sports a brilliant lifetime record of 10 wins from 21 starts and 9 of those have come here at Hastings. Dane Nelson is traveling in from Edmonton to be at the controls for Nancy Betts.
The superstar filly HERE’S HANNAH has drawn the outside post and has been saddled with a heavy burden of 130 pounds as she attempts to keep her unbeaten streak alive this year. She has only been beaten once in 12 starts and has never been headed at the wire with her regular jock Richard Hamel up. She’s racing farther, has more weight and an outside post and with all of that taken into account she will still probably win the money anyways.The John Morrison trainee is a special horse that will get a much tougher test than she’s had in her previous races in 2019. These are moments where champions shine.
Next stake is the $100,000 B.C. Oaks for three year fillies.
The rail was drawn by the NATHC’s AMAZONIAN who was a good second the final prep for the Oaks last time out. She has yet to miss the board in her brief career and has really improved since the blinkers were take off three starts ago. Richard Hamel will be in the tack for trainer Glen Todd.
Wayne Bakke, Nathan Hoines and Jodee Hoovestal’s IM EVIN IM LEAVIN is the best Alberta filly and is taking a run at the best from Seattle and Vancouver which makes this a true Northwest championship race. She tipped her hand two starts back when finishing second behind eventual Canadian Derby winner EXPLODE in an allowance race. She followed that up with a comfortable win in the Century Casino Oaks the premier race for fillies in Edmonton. She will team up with high percentage rider Rico Walcott for Greg Tracy.
Joy Cameron, Lana Brindley, Rob and Vicky Gilker’s BUTTERSCOTCH BLEND is another that took a step forward when removing blinkers and she posted an impressive win in the $50,000 CTHS Sales Stake two weeks back. She definitely loved the extra distance and was sharp early and near the lead and then ran away for a nice victory. Jose Asencio is back aboard.
The Sargent Stable’s KILLARNEY LASS has had a total reversal of form in her last two as she crushed a field of optional claimers (and she was eligible to be claimed for $30,000) by 14 lengths then blitzed five other rivals in the Washington Oaks by nine widening lengths. She is a tough one to gauge on how good she is but she is on a roll and trainer Frank Lucarelli seldom ships horses here so I got to believe he thinks she has a big chance. Rigo Sarmiento is up.
The Century Horse Racing Club’s WHOOP IT UP has pretty much toiled in the low to mid-level claiming ranks and winning those races with authority. She has since scored an allowance win and then was recently second behind IM EVIN IM LEAVIN in the Century Casino Oaks. She is sharp and Damario Bynoe gets the call again from Alberta based trainer Rod Cone.
The NATHC’s NORTHERN GRAYSTAR has been a pleasant surprise for her connections after getting beaten double-digit lengths in her first two starts she has come back to prove she is a legitimate filly and one that could upset today. She has speed and is at her best near the lead. Mario Gutierrez and trainer Glen Todd team up.
Tim Bankers TWIRLING DEVON was an upset winner of the $50,000 Irish Day Handicap early last month rallying from well back for the victory. She had no chance in the Washington Oaks as loose leader KILLARNEY LASS ran way and hid but with more speed signed on in this one she could be a factor late. Kevin Orozco up from Seattle will be the helm for Cindy Krasner.
Russ and Lois Bennett’s SUNBURST is a filly going the right way after losing to SUMMERLAND two back when that one was afforded an easy uncontested lead. SUNBURST rebounded with a huge run last time and easily ran by her competition. She seems like a filly that will love more ground and with some early speed in here she should get a decent pace to run at. Antonio Reyes rides for trainer Barbara Heads.
George Gilbert’s SUMMERLAND has suffered a couple of defeats in her last two and needs to regain her prior form if she is to win at this nine furlong trip. Her last race was marred by a terrible beginning as she hopped at the start and then proceeded to rush up and set a fast pace and actually did well to hold third place. When at her best she is almost impossible to beat. Enrique Gonzalez is in the saddle for trainer Phil Hall.
The big one of the day is next and it is the $250,000 B.C. Derby.
The inside post belongs to Rob and Sheena Maybin’s DOOBIEDOOBIEDOOBIE who was a narrow loser in an allowance race going long last race time out. This will be his first try with stakes calibre. Jose Asencio gets the call.
Canmor Farm’s EXPLODE has been the dominant three year old at Hastings this year and then traveled to Century Mile racking an allowance win and the Grade 3 Canadian Derby three weeks ago. He showed more early interest in the Canadian Derby and that could serve him well in this Derby that doesn’t feature a lot of early speed. He is the one to beat. Amadeo Perez will once again get a leg up from trainer Mark Cloutier.
The Tod Mountain Thoroughbred’s STAY FANTASTIC ran his best race of his brief career last time checking in second in the Derby Trial. He has some
positional speed and should in mid pack early. Antonio Reyes takes over for the injured Alex Marti for trainer Christine Ammann.
Peter and James Redekop’s ALL GOOD has been a private purchase since his last race at Los Alamitos which a second place finish in a non-winners of a race other than maiden or claiming event. He has worked stylishly since arriving in Vancouver and should be a pace factor but he will get tested for class. Tough call but has potential. Rigo Sarmiento is up for Phil Hall.
The Riversedge Racing Stables CALL IT A WRAP has been taking home decent pay cheques in stakes races on the prairies this season banking just over $50,000. He returns to his home province where he has captured both of his career victories. He will love the distance but he will need to be better if he is to win the big prize. Wilmur Galviz his Alberta pilot in here to ride for trainer Tim Rycroft.
James and Peter Redekop’s FINAL JEOPARDY was bought privately after his impressive second place run in the Grade 3 Dwyer Stakes at Belmont Park. The horse he lost to came back to win the Travers at Saratoga. He was slowly away and then bumped away from the gate in the Canadian Derby which cost him any shot of winning as the early tempo was slow and the horses up front had a huge advantage. He will be fitted in blinkers and will likely be a lot closer to the lead which will help his chances as there is not much early speed. He is the class of the race but will still need his best. Enrique Gonzalez and Phil Hall are the jock-trainer combo.
Blue Willow Dairy, Westana Ranches, Debra McComas, Don Danard and Jill Lindell’s FLATOUT WINNER was an expensive $75,000 claim from Churchill Downs in June. He definitely didn’t care for the surface at Century Mile as he turned in fourth and sixth place performances there. He worked nicely over our track and will get Rico Walcott in the tack for Greg Tracy.
The North American Thoroughbred Horse Company’s FIVE STAR GENERAL ran to the hype in the Derby Trial cruising in wire-to-wire fashion. He was pressured through some quick early splits but turned back all challenges and drew off to a nice win. He has good tactical speed and with a long run to the first turn he should be able to be in control and then it will be his race to win or lose. Mario Gutierrez has returned from Southern California to try and get his first BC Derby victory for owner-trainer Glen Todd.
Kim Peacock and Lance Giesbrecht’s WHISKEY BOUND has been an honest runner that shows up every time he is led over to the starting gate. He cost a mere $2,000 at the 2017 CTHS yearling sale so the connections are obviously thrilled with him. He will likely settle well back off of the pace and then produce his usual solid last quarter mile run and hopefully he gets a big chunk of the purse. Sahin Civaci rides for trainer Keith Pedersen.
The final stake on the day is the $50,000 S.W. Randall Plate.
Gordon Christoff’s BRAVE NATION took a shot with the best milers in the grade 3 Longacres Mile last month and wound up tenth. He has the class and showed that by almost beating CALGARY CAPER last fall in the Premiers.
He is better suited to this longer distance and with Amadeo Perez could be an upset chance for trainer John Snow.
Len Houweling, Doug Corsan and Mel Snow’s SLEW’S DA BOSS scored an impressive rail skimming win in the CHS Sales stake two weeks ago. This is a much tougher test but he is coming into this one off of an easy win. Antonio Reyes is back aboard.
Lana Brindley, George Robbins, Rob and Vicky Gilker’s NOT YET was a fast closing fifth in his latest in Seattle after a tardy beginning. The slow starts are becoming a trend and he will need every break to go is way if he is to threaten for the win. Jose Asencio is up.
NATHC and Marcia Dawn Bower’s PITCH COUNT was a $50,000 claim for Oaklawn Park last April. He has been in the hunt in his races, which have all been stakes, since arriving at Hastings. He should be positioned just in behind his stablemate HE’S THE REASON and will have every chance from there. Mario Gutierrez rides for Glen Todd.
Joanne Todd and the Nite and Day Stable’s R W STANLEY has taken awhile to get through his allowance conditions but has looked razor sharp in his last two starts. He is rapidly improving and gets a real stern test today. Rigo Sarmiento will be the new pilot for trainer Brian O’Connell.
Peter Redekop’s APALACHEE BAY was s good third in his last behind the heavily favored Gato Guapo at Century Mile. He is a proven stakes runner here at Hastings and is always a top threat. Enrique Gonzalez and Phil Hall will team up.
The North American Thoroughbred Horse Company’s HE’S THE REASON has stamped himself a top older horse winning impressively in the $50,000 Lieutenant Governors and then running, arguably better, but after a three way speed duel was reeled in late by CALGARY CAPER. There is not much early speed in this edition of the Randall Plate so I expect him to have a comfortable early lead and he should be tough to catch. Richard Hamel rides for Glen Todd.
Brett Mason’s MORE POWER TO HIM was stakes winner in his first start at Emerald Downs and then went unplaced in the Grade 3 Longacres Mile. This nine furlong trip should suit him nicely and if he can get some pace help he could threaten for the win. He definitely has the class to beat this field. Kevin Orozco is the irons for Seattle based trainer Kay Cooper.
Kim Peacock and Lance Giesbrecht’s CALGARY CAPER just continues to keep rolling at the ripe old age of eight. He easily swooped by his rivals in the BC Cup Classic at this mile and an eighth distance on his way to surpassing the $400,000 mark in career earnings.The pace scenario does not seem as favorable for him today but rider Sahin Civaci knows him well so the Phil Hall trainee might be sitting a bit closer early. He’s always dangerous at this distance.
Racing resumes next Saturday, September 14th and Sunday, September 5 both days will be the regular 1:50 p.m. first post.
A reminder that the CTHS yearling sale is this Tuesday, September 10th at 3:00 p.m. at the Thunderbird Show Park in Fort Langley. The preview will be held Monday, September 9th at 3:00 p.m.
Good luck everybody and enjoy Derby/Oaks day at Hastings Racecourse.