Belle in SUNDAY

Brilliant Belle will be running this Sunday afternoon in race 7.  She will be breaking from her favorite post, one, in a 7 1/2 furlong grass race.  The conditions are $7500 claiming, a bit of a bump from her last race (a conditioned $6250 claimer) and she’ll have Jareth Loveberry aboard.

It will be Group 2 (Nierman – Zessman) in the paddock.

We really wanted to get a $6250 starter allowance but it didn’t fill so we had a pair of options: the $4000 starter where we would have to run for the $6250 tag or the $7500 race that we ultimately entered.

It will be interesting to see how she handles the extra distance, though she should be able to go a bit longer on the turf than she does on dirt.  We know she can handle the turf as she ran a nice 3rd in a turf race back in Kentucky.

We decided on this race to challenge her a bit, see if we have real turf ability which would option up options down the road and go with a higher claiming price to force anyone that wants to buy her to pay us what we bought her if they’re willing to take a risk on her.  She was tough against cheap but not sure if she can beat much higher than what’s in here…IF she can beat what is in here!

It’s a full field and we’ll break it down for you in the next couple of days.


Looking for a Race

We’ll be looking for another race for Belle as soon as next weekend.  Right now it looks like we’d have to run her back for $6250 and that’s not something we’re willing to do right now given her last performance.  We’d prefer to get her in a Starter Allowance or a higher claiming race ($10,000 or so) but we’ll have to see.  Maybe we’ll take a shot in an allowance?!

She’s been training really well and Nevada has been happy the way she’s bounced back out of this last race.  It sure would be fun to pick up another win in front of the home town fans – and prove that it doesn’t have to be Group 1’s turn in the Paddock for her to win!

“Belle is Brilliant!”

Hard to imagine things going better than they did yesterday.  Belle broke well, stalked the early pace and, under a patient ride from Orlando Mojica, found room in the lane and just blasted off to win by 4 3/4 lengths.

Kudos go out to Nevada and Veronica Litfin and team for getting her back on track – so to speak.  She was ready to roll and roll she did.  Also a very nice job by Orlando biding his time, keeping her relaxed, then finding a way through when the rail didn’t open up and letting her loose.

We’ll see how she came out of the race, let her get back to work and see what races remain in the meet.  Providing all is well and we get a race that fits, we may be able to get one more start in before the meet ends.

Here is the chart of the race: CBY081317USA9

Congratulations everybody!  Photos will be available downstairs in the track photographer’s office starting Thursday evening after 6:00 PM.

Race Preview: Brilliant Belle

Belle goes tomorrow in the 9th race with Orlando Mojica aboard.  She will be breaking from the rail in the 5 1/2 furlong dash over the main track for a tag of $6250.


2 Spell Winder (Donlin/Loveberry) – Morning line favorite has had a great meet and coming off an impressive victory in her last over lesser.  She will definitely want on or near the lead and if we go too we’ll know early on if our girl has any heart left.

3 Muster In (Cancahri/P Canchari) – First of two entries from the Luis Canchari barn.  This one comes back to the main surface after a try over the turf and a trip to Omaha which were not fruitful.

4 Desert Summer (Van Winkle/Goodwin) – Another coming back to the dirt after a turf try.  Was solid at $7500 last time here but going to need some speed to go after.

5 Wonder About Lola (Fields/Sanchez) – Winner of two of three from a barn having a very solid meet.  Moves up a tick and should be trying to stalk the early pace.

6 Gold Cup Skier (Bravo/R Mojica) – Certainly speedy Minnesotan had a rough go at $5000 ($7500 for state breds).  Showed no speed in that one but has shown it before.

7 Sandy’s Song (Canchari/A Canchari) – Luis’ second entry had been trying tougher here on and off the turf before also trying Omaha.  She has been competitive but not able to close the deal for about a year back in Pennsylvania.  The drop should be what she’s looking for.  She should be closer to the pace under Alex and will be a threat late.

Can we win here?  Sure.  But it really is hard to tell what our girl is thinking these days.  I thought her last race was a good spot for her to be in and she just folded her tents and went home when pressured.  That was surprising considering how dogged she was in her victory to kick off the Canterbury season.  Could be that her hoof hadn’t fully healed or it could be she’s only brave when she hits the front.  We, of course, can’t ask her so we gave her some class relief and we’ll see how she does.

With the rail I would anticipate her to get out well and try and clear a little bit before the speed on her outside comes down.  Ideally Spell Winder and Gold Cup Skier go and she can be a position to get past these late – if she’ll go ahead and allow it.

Should be interesting.  We’ll see soon enough.  Good luck everybody!

Belle In Sunday

Race 9 on Sunday will mark the return of Group 1 to the paddock!  Belle will be taking on a group of 8 other fillies and mares going 5.5 furlongs over the main track.  The race is for horses that have not won 4 races lifetime and a tag of $6,250.  She drew the rail with Orlando Mojica aboard.

So why would we run her under her purchase price?

Well, she’s had two really subpar races in a row.  The first she had an excuse with the stumble but in the last she was pressured on the outside and just gave up.  She seems to have bounced back from her foot injury but there may be some lingering mental issues for her.  We drop her down to try and get her some confidence as well as get a measure of how far off she may be.  If she really struggles with this group (it could happen) then we have a horse who has really tailed off.

She’s also won nearly $11,000 for us at this point.  We bought her for around $8,000.  Should she happen to get claimed at $6250 and happens to also win the race ($7500 winner’s share) she would have banked us $24,000 at a cost of about $8200 (including tax) plus expenses for 4.5 months (about $12,000) for a net profit of about $4,000.

Sure it’s not exceptional but in the grind it out world of lower level claiming, it’s the goal.

Of course all kinds of other things can happen: we could come in 9th and still get claimed; we could come in 9th and NOT get claimed; and any number of permutations which could result in net loss, break even or less profit.

You’ve got to run them where they have a chance of winning. Given her 14 Beyer and getting absolutely smoked last out, this may be her best chance given how badly she’s tailed off.

We will preview the race tomorrow.  Good luck and see you at the races!

She’s 5/2 on the morning line and second choice.