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Blog - EVENTS/TRAVEL

Bahamian Squall pulls away to win the Smile Sprint Handicap at Calder Race Course (Photo courtesy of Coady Photography).

Bahamian Squall had never won a graded stakes race entering the Grade 2 Smile Sprint Handicap on Saturday at the Summit of Speed at Calder Race Course.

A dominant performance in the Smile not only provided Bahamian Squall with his first graded win but also punched his ticket to compete against the best sprinters in the world in November.

The 4-year-old Gone West colt dispatched 11 opponents in the $350,000 Smile Sprint to earn an automatic starting spot in the $1.5 million Xpressbet Breeders’ Cup Sprint on November 2 at Santa Anita Park via the Breeders’ Cup Challenge “Win and You’re In” series.

Bahamian Squall close to the front under jockey Luis Saez but proved much the best in the stretch when he pulled clear to win by 1 ¾ lengths. Trinniberg, winner of the 2012 Breeders’ Cup Sprint, finished second as the 5-2 favorite.

Saez said he made sure to keep an eye on Trinniberg in the Smile.

“On the turn, I moved a little bit when I saw the other horse, the big favorite [Trinniberg], come inside,” Saez said. “I moved and my horse responded good.”

The Smile Sprint was his first win in four starts this year after closing 2012 with a dominant win in the Sunshine State Stakes in December at Gulfstream Park for trainer David Fawkes and owner-breeder Donald R. Dizney.

Fawkes won the Smile Sprint in 2010 with Big Drama, who went on to win the Breeders’ Cup Sprint. Fawkes said he preferred not to look too far ahead with Bahamian Squall.

“It’s tough to keep them healthy for a long time,” Fawkes said. “We’ll look at something at Saratoga [for his next race].  Every horse is different but we’ll follow a similar path.

“Fortunately, good horses stay good for a long time.”

The Summit of Speed is Calder’s signature racing event each year with four graded stakes on the main track for sprinters as well as two turf sprint stakes.

STARSHIP SOARS IN PRINCESS ROONEY

Princess Rooney - inside

Photo courtesy of Coady Photography

Starship Truffles made it look easy in the Grade 1 Princess Rooney Handicap with a visually impressive 3 ¾-length runaway victory under Edgard Zayes.

Starship Truffled raced in fourth early in the Princess Rooney before taking charge on the turn. She opened a commanding lead in the stretch and coasted to victory.

Runner-up Judy the Beauty finished strongly as the 11-10 favorite in the 12-horse field but never seriously challenged the winner.

Marty Wolfson trains Starship Truffles for owner Chasing Tails Stables. The Ghostzapper filly won for the fifth time in eight starts in 2013 and picked up her second stakes win of the year. Starship Truffles won the Musical Romance Stakes in April at Calder.

LILY SHINES IN AZALEA

azalea-inside

Photo courtesy of Coady Photography

Wildcat Lily out finished game runner-up Dreaming of Susie in the Azalea Stakes to post her first career graded stakes win.

Wildcat Lily raced in second behind Dreaming of Susie for the first half-mile of the six-furlong race, accelerated to the lead with about an eighth of a mile left, and then held off a late bid from her resurgent rival in the final strides for the win.

Manny Azpurua trains Wildcat Lily for owner Rontos Racing Stable. The 3-year-old D’wildcat filly won the Leave Me Alone Stakes at Calder on June 8 in her previous race.

“She ran good, but not as good as I had hoped,” said Azpurua when asked what his plans are next for Wildcat Lily. “I have to wait and see. We have to take our time.”

MARGARITA TIME IN CARRY BACK

The Carry Back - inside

Photo courtesy of Coady Photography

Mico Margarita overhauled pacesetters R Free Roll and Rockyshomerun in the stretch and sprinted clear to secure his first career stakes win in the Carry Back Stakes.

“I knew there were going to be a lot of tough horses, but I knew my horse was tough, too,” said winning jockey Ricardo Santana Jr..

The Run Away and Hide colt won an allowance race at Churchill Downs in his most recent start for trainer Steve Asmussen and owners J. Kirk and Judy Robison. He improved to three wins, two seconds and three thirds from 10 career starts.

For Equibase charts from the Summit of Speed card, click here.

 

Image Description

Mike Curry

A native of Philadelphia who grew up in nearby Wilmington, Del., Curry was editor of Thoroughbred Times TODAY before joining the America's Best Racing team in May 2012. He credits his grandfather for the inspiration to repeatedly sneak off to Delaware Park as a 16-year-old and the 1989 rivalry between Sunday Silence and Easy Goer for his passion for horse racing. Curry graduated from the University of Delaware in 1997 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and a concentration in Journalism. He worked for the Wilmington News Journal and was Sports Editor of the Cecil Whig before moving to Lexington in 2005.

Image Description

Mike Curry

A native of Philadelphia who grew up in nearby Wilmington, Del., Curry was editor of Thoroughbred Times TODAY before joining the America's Best Racing team in May 2012. He credits his grandfather for the inspiration to repeatedly sneak off to Delaware Park as a 16-year-old and the 1989 rivalry between Sunday Silence and Easy Goer for his passion for horse racing. Curry graduated from the University of Delaware in 1997 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and a concentration in Journalism. He worked for the Wilmington News Journal and was Sports Editor of the Cecil Whig before moving to Lexington in 2005.

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