The first set of Canterbury Connections was a complete bust, We were seeking prices and found overmatched horses. More combatants are taking to other racetracks now that the season’s been done for a few weeks, so we’ll try again.
Many Canterbury horses are showing up in the entries at Hawthorne, and even though I only sampled Stickney for a few months it’s a track I enjoy taking a glance at. There are of course, other venues hosting Canterbury animals but let’s take a look at this weekend:
Friday – 10/4 – Hawthorne
Race 3 – Chongo – He isn’t the most experienced Midwest runner in the world but he sure is improving at the right time. He didn’t try to get on Hawthorne dirt this year but with turf racing virtually non-existent thus far in 2013, Chongo had to break his maiden on the main track. He did so very impressively despite the light figure, and improved in his summer in Minnesota. His pedigree has a fair amount of turf in it but nothing screams that he’s any better on one surface than the other, and he’ll be a much better price than some of the faces Chicago’s seen lately. Alex Canchari will don the green & black silks for the mount, a local who’s quite familiar with the Hawthorne track.
Race 9 – Image of Grandeur – 6-1 is a decent enough number right? He ran well enough up here to take place honors in three of his four efforts in Shakopee but has not cracked the win column this year. Our track is not quite as kind to closers as Hawthorne is, especially after dark. There isn’t an abundance of speed, and it appears the Robertson charge He’s Bonafide will take some catching should he be allowed to lope along. It doesn’t seem to matter what the pace scenario is, the later it gets at Hawthorne the better the closers rattle along.
Saturday – 10/5
Race 5 – (G3 Hawthorne Derby) – Dorsett – Yeah, we can’t really call him our own but he won the biggest race we run. After a “meh” race at Del Mar (move a bit WIDER Bejarano), they’ve regrouped with Terry Hamilton’s colt (pictured above) and will try another graded race. While he usually lands just a couple of lengths behind in these events, he is once again working well for this and lands in a nice inside spot to sit behind the front runners. He’s never touched Hawthorne grass but many of these fit that mold – he’s at least shown the versatility to take his act on the road and handle different courses. This is not exactly a horse that I bubble over with confidence in, but his price will be right and if he takes another step forward he’s got talent.
Keeneland – Race 8 (G1 Breeders’ Futurity) – General Jack – The 2013 Shakopee Juvenile winner has been off since a relatively easy score here on August 3. He’s the 5-1 second choice on the morning line in a race the connections are likely using to determine whether he has a future on the Kentucky Derby trail or whether he will stick to turf (for that matter, it could determine whether they try the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile or the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf). He was entered in a Grade 2 at Saratoga toward the end of August but was scratched. Now he boasts three solid drills at Churchill’s training track. Was second in a live maiden race at Belmont earlier this year… mixed signals on this guy’s future.
Remington Park – Race 8 – George Ray – He ended his season up here a winner, and he certainly will be given every chance from a pace standpoint to get two in a row for Tim Padilla. The nine-year-old seems to going well right now and will make his first appearance on Remington soil. As the year’s gone on he’s decided he’d rather sprint, and if his two routes up here this summer exit the equation he fits beautifully in this spot. There’s lots of early pace surrounding him in the gate, and as long as he can keep a traffic cop on standby he could be a decent price on the board. There is another Padilla charge trying the grass in the 9th, She’s Mighty Fast, who could be used with this horse in horizontal wagers but she may be a furlong or so short of her best distance.
Prairie Meadows – Race 9 – Cowboy Kudzu – We have seen a few of the faces in here, but the most recognizable one from this summer resides on the rail. However, Stacy Charette-Hill has not had the filly on the inside for a long time and her statistics may enough money that way to leave Cowboy Kudzu at a juicy price on the board. He started out nearly perfect as a two year old but is obviously delicate – He spent his three year old campaign on the pine. At four he’s been a mixed bag….must have needed his first couple at Remington then won here only to be vanned off. He needed time after that but returned with a decent third at much shorter. He’s been off since that time but must be feeling ok if he’s returning in this spot. He’s still 3 for 3 at 350 yards and should be a price. Take a look at the board when these hit the track though, as the more live Harris animal will probably show it with his price.
These are just a few of the locals stepping out elsewhere – Good luck betting them this weekend!
This blog was written by Canterbury Paddock Analyst Angela Hermann. Angela just completed her third year as Canterbury Park’s Analyst.