October 2016 Issue - page 10

Page 10
October 2016
PENNSYLVANIA EQUESTRIAN
Awesome Slew Dazzles with Seven Length Win in G3 Smarty Jones
Parx Racing capped off its
Labor Day weekend with a ter-
rific Monday afternoon program
that featured four stakes includ-
ing three of its major stakes of
the year. Topping the card were
the G3 $300,000 Smarty Jones
Stakes at one mile and one-six-
teenth for three-year-olds, the G3
$300,000 Turf Monster Handicap,
a five-furlong turf sprint, the G3
$200,000 Greenwood Cup, a mile
and a half main track marathon,
and the $200,000 Turf Amazon
Handicap, a five furlong turf
sprint for fillies and mares.
Live Oak Plantation’s Awe-
some Slew put on a show in the
7th running of the Smarty Jones.
Under a masterful ride from
jockey Paco Lopez, the Awesome
Again colt broke beautifully from
the outside gate in the overflow
field of fourteen and was able
to win the short run to the first
turn. Lopez had to use some
horse to get that early lead as the
timer showed, hitting the opening
quarter in a strong 23.0. From
there though, Lopez was able to
get his horse a breather up the
backstretch, running the second
quarter mile in 24.3 for a half that
turned into a very comfortable
47.3. The other thirteen were
all vying for position in behind
the free running leader, hoping
for their chance later on, but that
chance would never materialize.
Lopez had a ton of horse, let
loose on the far turn, and began
to open up. At the quarter pole
the lead was three, by the time
they hit the eighth pole he had
roared away to an eight length
lead as the others wobbled in his
wake. A brilliant ride and a terrif-
ic performance equaled a blowout
win as Awesome Slew left no
doubt who was best on this day,
gearing down at the end for a
thoroughly convincing 7 length
victory. Trained by Ed Plesa, Jr.,
he went off as a 10-1 shot and re-
turned a handsome $23.40 to win,
stopping the timer in 1:42.92.
The Turf Monster Stakes
result was the shocker of the day.
23-1 shot Doctor J Dub held off
35-1 Two Notch Road to win
the race by half a length. The
whole complexion of the race
was changed the moment the
gate opened when 8-5 favorite
Power Alert stumbled badly and
was bumped by the rival just to
his inside, a disastrous beginning
from which he would not recover.
Doctor J Dub got a terrific start
and vied for the early lead with
second choice, Pool Winner.
Midway up the backstretch, Pool
Winner, on the outside of the two,
held a slight lead, but by the time
they reached the far turn, winning
jockey Sheldon Russell had
Doctor J Dub almost a full length
in front. The two remained
one-two coming to the top of
the stretch, at which point Pool
Winner did not corner well and as
Doctor J Dub straightened away,
he suddenly found himself about
two and a half lengths in front.
Pool Winner desperately tried to
get himself back into it and now
from the back on the far outside,
long shot Two Notch Road was
closing fast. Doctor J Dub would
hold tough, though, staying on to
win the first stake of his career.
Owned by Drawing Away Stable
and trained by Jena Antonucci,
the six-year-old gelded son of
Sharp Humor paid $49.80 to win
and finished out in :58.73 over a
course labeled firm.
On paper, the Greenwood
Cup looked pretty simple. One
speed horse with five closers.
Get the speed horse to the front,
set a nice, comfortable pace and
then pull away. And that is ex-
actly how it played out. Jockey
Kendrick Carmouche, four time
riding champion at Parx, had the
controlling speed with Scuba. He
made the lead through the open-
ing sixteenth of a mile and never
looked back. An easy quarter of
25.73, a stroll to the half in 51.55
and a leisurely mile in 1:44.62
and the race was over. Because
the early fractions were slow the
late runners were all in pretty
close pursuit, but with three fur-
longs to run, Carmouche finally
gave Scuba more rein and off he
went. Drawing away quickly
around the far turn, he’d opened
a three length lead at the top of
the stretch and came home a full
five lengths in front. Owned
by DARRS, Inc. and trained by
Brandan Walsh, the five-year-old
gelded son of Tapit went off as
the 6-5 favorite and paid $4.40 to
win. The final time for the mile
and a half was 2:32.76.
The outstanding turf sprint-
er and heavily favored Lady
Shipman had to work for it, but
she proved best to win the Turf
Amazon Stakes. The four-year-
old Midshipman filly nearly beat
the boys last year in the Breeders
Cup Turf sprint, losing by a neck
to Mongolian Saturday, and she
was on display here with her
speed and class. She broke on
top and led through the opening
sixteenth, but longshot Your Pace
or Mine rushed up on her inside
and held a short lead to the far
turn. Lady Shipman stayed right
with her, though, and was back
in front with a quarter mile to go.
Your Pace or Mine fought on,
finally giving way at the eighth
pole, but Everything Lovely, who
had been sitting a nice, ground
saving trip in behind the lead-
ers swung off the fence for the
final eighth of a mile and made
a strong run, but Lady Shipman
was simply too tough. She held
her rival at bay and came home
just better than a length in front.
Owned by Ralon Investments,
trained by Kiaran McLaughlin
and ridden by Joel Rosario, Lady
Shipman got bet down to 1-5 and
paid all of $2.60 to win. She cov-
ered the five furlongs on the grass
in :58.06. It was the 13th win in
19 lifetime starts for the turf and
she’s once again expected to be
very much a part of Breeders Cup
day out at Santa Anita.
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