Weekend Recap 6/9

Tale of a Champion pulls the upset in the Charles Whittingham at Hollywood

Jockey Joe Talamo has been having a career meet at Hollywood Park this spring, and he kept it going on Saturday as he guided Tale of a Champion to a win in the Grade 2 Charles Whittingham Memorial.  Sent off at odds of 11/1, the second longest price in the field, Tale of a Champion fell into a garden trip early on, sitting third behind Lucky Primo and Slim Shadey who battled up front through only moderate fractions.  Talamo made a decisive move at the top of the stretch to split runners and Tale of a Champion burst to the front.  Meanwhile race favorite All Squared Away (BetPTC.com Top Selection) went four wide and started to make up ground on the new leader.  But Tale of a Champion had much more left and even started to edge clear late to beat All Squared Away by a length.  Lucky Primo (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) finished up in third.

In the Manhattan Beach it was another upset, as 15/1 shot Kinz Funky Monkey (BetPTC.com Longshot) and Victor Espinoza went wire to wire to hold off favorite Judy in Disguise (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) to get the win by half a length.  The BetPTC.com exacta returned a nice $53.90 for every $1 wagered.

Black Diamond Cat shocks the field in the Ponche Handicap at Calder

Saturday was Summit of Speed Preview Day at Calder, and it’s possible that we’ll see some of the same runners back next month for the big card.  In the $75,000 Ponche Handicap it was Black Diamond Cat (BetPTC.com Longshot) and Luca Panici who pulled off a 15/1 upset to win the feature for the older boys.  Close It Out rallied from last to grab second, but both race favorites, Bahamian Squall and Jackson Bend finished off the board, running fourth and fifth respectively.  The U Can Do It was a prep for the Grade 1 Princess Rooney and saw a slight upset as Capitalism at Risk pulled off a 6/1 slight upset, going all the way and just holding on by a nose over a fast charging Oh Carole who just missed.

The Leave Me Alone Stakes looked wide open on paper and proved to be as 10/1 Wildcat Lilly (BetPTC.com Longshot) went nearly wire to wire, opening up on her competition to win by four emphatic lengths in the end.  Dreaming of Sophia held on for second while Street Girl rallied from last to get third.  The big disappointment in the race was heavy favorite Dreaming of Lucy who ran eleventh beaten seventeen lengths.  In the Unbridled Stakes it was R Free Roll who was allowed to free roll on the lead and was never challenged as he won off by nearly seven lengths.  Rockyshomerun (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) was second all the way around and finished in that spot at the wire while City of Weston (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) rallied up to grab the third spot.

Miz Ida up to win the Mint Julep Handicap at Churchill Downs 

Miz Ida and Shawn Bridgmohan had all the late momentum on Saturday in the $100,000 Early Times Mint Julep Handicap at Churchill Downs.  Sent off as the 7/2 second choice, Miz Ida set up shop in the fifth spot as Daisy Devine and Soft Whisper went out and battled on the lead early.  The classy Daisy Devine put away Soft Whisper at the top of the stretch and had a length lead in mid-stretch, but Miz Ida just kept coming after saving ground on the turn and got up late to win going away by a length and a quarter in the mile and one sixteenth event.  Miz Ida is trained by Steve Margolis.

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