September is an extremely busy month, especially because it involves the end of Saratoga, moving the horses home, and returning home to Long Island before I have to head off again to the Keeneland Yearling Sale. It was great to round out the Saratoga meet with a win from American Know How, who had quite the meet finishing third, second, and then breaking his Maiden on September 4. Unfortunately, the meet was decimated by bad weather and it cost us the chance of winning far more than we did, but I’m still very pleased with the way the horses and team performed. With Axelle staying behind to run our Belmont string while we are at Saratoga, things can sometimes get a little difficult. It was wonderful to see everyone acquitted themselves extremely well, enabling Deep Cover to ship from Belmont and win at Laurel for My Racehorse on August 20. An enormous thank you to Axelle and everyone on her team for putting in the time and effort that led to that success.
Grace, Willow, Maggie, George, Boo and I came home on Tuesday, September 5. I had popped back a few times during the Saratoga meet, but getting everyone home again and settled is a great feeling after a number of weeks away, and it makes for an entertaining/exhausting week.
On Saturday, September 10, I flew down to Kentucky Downs where Cynane put in a rather perplexing performance in the Global Tote Juvenile Fillies Stakes. She didn’t seem entirely happy and was rather wound up for a filly who is normally very relaxed. I will chalk up the effort to her being upset with her surroundings. Straight after that race, Keith Mason very sweetly drove me two and a half hours up to Lexington for the Keeneland September Yearling Sale where we purchased seven yearlings. The market is extremely strong — as it has been for the previous two years — with a very good group of horses. A special mention to the team at Oracle Bloodstock for shortlisting 4,000 yearlings down to a number that is manageable for me to look at. Words cannot express how grateful I am for their work and the talent they bring to the table. Big thank you to John Zanotti, Rainbow’s End Racing, West Paces, Steven Rocco, West Point Thoroughbreds, and Santa Rey Stables for their continued support through the yearling sales.
While I was at the sale, I was very pleased with a couple of our two-year-old NY-breds: Needed ran an excellent third in a Maiden Special Weight on September 15 and looked like she will be very live in her next start, and Johnny V gave Ez Roll a very good ride to finish second in a Maiden on September 17. Ez Roll got a bit of a stop/start trip the whole way around but was clearly the best and should also be extremely live when he runs back with a pair of blinkers.
Earlier that same day, Sonic Speed ran in what can only be described as a debacle of a race that had him finish ninth. It was decided to wheel him back five days later at The Meadowlands where he was victorious for Zilla Racing and their partners. He’s a very cool horse who takes his racing well and seems very happy in our barn at the moment.
We currently have a number of two-year-olds who are sitting on big efforts and the filly we purchased at Goffs in Ireland for Steven Rocco will be heading to the US shortly. Our October split of horses are also gearing up for the end of next month where several will ship down to the Fair Grounds to take advantage of their winter turf course.
For now, it’s very nice to be back home for a little while.