Embellishing Bob gets put up in the Derby Trial
Churchill Downs opened on Saturday and Embellishing Bob and Bayern battled the entire mile of the $150,000 Derby Trial and at the wire it was Bayern who kept his nose in front. But after a steward’s inquiry looking at the stretch run, the stewards disqualified Bayern for drifting out late into Embellishing Bob, giving Embellishing Bob the win. Sent off at odds of 9/2, Embellishing Bob stayed half a length behind Bayern (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) early on as Bayern set the opening quarter in 23.23 seconds. As they went into the turn Bayern maintained his lead with Embellishing Bob always right on his hip, a half length back. Those two separated themselves at the furlong pole from the field, but all of a sudden Myositis Dan came roaring from the back. The three of them hit the wire together, with just two noses separating the top three, with Bayern a nose ahead of Embellishing Bob and another nose back to Myositis Dan. Since Bayern’s drifting only effected Embellishing Bob, he was placed second behind that runner.
Awesome Return gets up to win the Snow Chief
Awesome Return had to go wide on the final turn, but he had all the momentum late as he got up to win the $250,000 Snow Chief Stakes at Santa Anita on Saturday. Sent off at odds of 4/1, Awesome Return was fifth early on as long shot Pray Hard went out to set the early pace. Pray Hard had that lead to the quarter pole when Aotearoa (BetPTC.com Longshot) took over at the head of the lane, but the come from behinders all came roaring. Awesome Return and Patriots Rule both came flying down the outside and got up to finish 1-2, with Alert Bay (BetPTC.com Top Selection) rallying up to get third after having to wait for room.
In the $250,000 Melair it was favored Rovenna (BetPTC.com Top Selection) who once again dominated the fillies and mares race for state breds. Rovenna sat just off the pace as Wonderful Lie went up to the lead going onto the backstretch at a huge price. Wonderful Lie brought that lead all the way into the stretch, but Rovenna was let loose by Victor Espinoza at the eighth pole and they battled with Wonderful Lie all the way to the wire, with Rovenna prevailing by a neck.
Top Kisser stayed just off the pace in the Spring Fever and was able to get up for a huge win in the $125,000 event. Top Kisser was making her first start since last July, but looked fresh as a daisy as she blew by Mark’s Mine (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) in the stretch to win by almost four lengths. In the Tiznow Stakes it was Storm Fighter who went right to the front and never looked back, scoring over favored Rousing Sermon (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) to get the win.
Grand Contender wins a hard fought edition of the Texas Mile
Grand Contender made a big move on the turn and had to win a tough stretch battle with Taptowne to win the Grade 3 Texas Mile at Lone Star Park. Grand Contender (BetPTC.com Top Selection) was third early on as Skip the Pinot and Smack Ridge went out to set the pace as a pair of long shots. Grand Contender and Richard Eramia took command into the lane, but Taptowne (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) came right after Grand Contender and they battled to the wire, with Grand Contender holding on to win by half a length. Taptowne finished second ahead of the late closing favorite Bourbon Courage (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) who ran third, with Stachys (BetPTC.com Longshot) who got 4th at 22/1, completing an ice-cold super that paid $400 for a $2 bet.