Two-Year-Olds to Watch; Ready to Run as Three-Year-Olds in 2014
Two-Year-Olds to Watch; Ready to Run as Three-Year-Olds in 2014
Part 2 of 2
As a follow up to our “Two-Year-Olds to Watch; The Introduction” article, Lady and The Track checked in with Chuck and Maribeth Sandford, David Pope of Siena Farm, and Tracy Meyer of In The Clutch Equine – Meyer Racing Stables, to find out how the foals of 2011 are fairing as they prepare for their big 2014 three-year-old debut. From new career paths to the Winner’s Circle, each and every colt and filly has progressed in very different ways.
Chuck and Maribeth Sandford, of Sandford Racing, are in for an exciting ride down the 2014 Kentucky Derby Trail with two-year-olds Almost Famous, Brilliant Messi, Chas’s Legacy, Chivalrous, and Indy’s Legacy. Critics and experts are reporting that Almost Famous, who ranked 25-1 on the Wynn Las Vegas Early Kentucky Derby Odds list, is quite possibly the horse to beat the first Saturday in May. Most recently, Almost Famous was scratched from the Kentucky Jockey Club at Churchill Downs on November 30th due to a stone bruise but has recovered flawlessly with the workouts to prove it.
Chuck Sandford told us Almost Famous had “two very impressive wins” and will train at Palm Meadows in Boynton Beach Florida to prepare for the winter season at Gulfstream Park. Calvin Borel was aboard Almost Famous for his first win and Corey Lanerie for his second, in which the colt won by six lengths.
Almost Famous has progressed steadily with trainer Patrick Byrne. On November 21st the Unbridled’s Song colt was ranked 2/4 breezing three furlongs at Churchill Downs and clocked in at 36.40. On December 18th Almost Famous breezed four furlongs at 48:40 and was ranked 1/23 at palm meadows Training Center. We should expect to see Almost Famous hit the Gulfstream Park track with blinkers on in early January 2014.
Chuck Sandford also reported two-year-old Chas’s Legacy, “has been very impressive and has improved with each race.” Chuck Sandford added, “we will bring Chas’s Legacy to Gulfstream next year.” The Bernadini colt broke his maiden on November 7th with jockey Joseph Rocco, Jr. on the mount.
In addition to Chas’s Legacy and Almost Famous, the Sandford camp holds a couple of other shining stars including two-year-old Chivalrous and my personal favorite, two-year-old Brilliant Messi. The dark brown Bernadini colt Brilliant Messi has four workouts under his belt but has yet to race. Chivalrous, a Street Cry colt hasn’t yet raced either but was most recently ranked 2/8 after breezing 36:40 on December 1st at Churchill Downs.
Chuck Sandford added, “We also have a real nice AP Indy colt called Indy’s Legacy. Everyone shipped to Florida on December 2nd. The three un-raced colts are getting closer. Probably sometime in January we will get have them ready to go.”
Be sure to follow Sandford Racing on twitter for updates.
The Siena Farm homebred colts and fillies of 2011 are all making strides at various stages. David Pope of Siena Farm in Paris, Kentucky updated us on the status of American Bond, Ida Mae and Sweet Cindy Lou.
Two-year-old colt American Bond is back to galloping on the track at Payton Training Center in Ocala, FL. American Bond is in Todd Pletcher’s program at Payton, and will ship to Todd’s barn at Palm Meadows when he is ready. Ida Mae will join that program when she is ready.
David Pope stated, “When American Bond is ready to begin regular breezes, he will ship to Palm Meadows for the next step in the training program.” David Pope added, “American Bond should start breezing towards the end of the year, and I would hope that he gets a race at Gulfstream in February so I can escape the cold weather, even if it’s just for a weekend.”
“Ida Mae is at WinStar’s Training Center in Versailles, KY jogging on the track. She is a little behind in her development but seems to continue to improve.” David Pope added, “I would hope that within a month, that Ida Mae would be ready for Payton Training Center. Ida Mae is not far behind and may get out of chilly Kentucky before the winter weather gets bad. I’ve noticed that Street Sense’s progeny tend to be later horses, and so I want to let Ida Mae dictate her schedule, with the all-weather surface at WinStar, we really are not pressed to ship her South before she is ready.”
Two-year-old Sweet Cindy Lou was introduced to us back in June as the toughest of the three Siena Farm two-year-olds but now has another challenging career in her future.
David Pope said, “Sweet Cindy Lou has been retired from the racing stable and will be bred next year. David added, “Sweet Cindy Lou gets to be a horse and run free in the snow covered pastures and is getting a winter coat.”
David Pope generously shared a story with us about Sweet Cindy Lou stating, “Moneigh Mary” from ReRun visited the farm to assist Sweet Cindy Lou in painting her first masterpiece. Because Sweet Cindy Lou has a reputation for not being very sweet, I was a little concerned that she might not be cooperative. But she took right to the painting and her Original “Moneigh” will help fund some of the wonderful things ReRun is doing for retired racehorses and I have a neat Christmas gift for my little sister, the original Cindy Lou.”
Siena Farm has unique and interesting plans for 2014. David Pope filled us in on what to expect for the New Year stating, “Siena Farm always has new and exciting plans for the upcoming year. We are researching the practicality of installing an equine pool at the farm. Swimming is an excellent form of exercise and therapy and we believe it will benefit the horses. Just need to find a place to put it.”
David Pope added, “As of today, I have 23 broodmares to mate in 2014. The amount of data we sort through to determine the best mating for racing and/or commercial sales is mindboggling. But we believe it does help us make the best possible decision for each broodmare and hopefully give them the best possibility for success in the future.”
As always, you can keep up with the Siena Farm team by visiting the Siena Farm website or following Siena Farm on facebook and twitter. In conclusion David Pope added, “We are expecting 16 babies this spring so prepare yourself for more cute and adorable pictures!”
In The Clutch Equine – Meyer Racing Stables currently has two 2-year-olds fillies Medalbu and Desert Notion in the game. Medalbu broke her maiden first time out at Pimlico as she raced with stable mate Desert Notion who finished 3rd in that race. Doug O’Neill was interested in purchasing Medalbu for clients, and she transported back to Pimlico during Preakness week and was stabled there for a few days next to Goldencents and was escorted unto the track to train by Lava Man.
Tracy Meyer stated, “Fortunately for us, she was not sold and was returned home to us.”
Medalbu also got to experience Churchill Downs and red carpet treatment for the Debutante Stakes.
Tracy Meyer commented, “The race went in a scorching 1:10 and she was just not prepared for that kind of speed. Her next race in the White Clay Creek Stakes at Delaware Park also brought disappointment. An unfortunate incident in the gate by the crew caused a minor injury. She is fine now, but it required time off. Both were turned out in July and were brought back to the Training Center in Middleburg in the late fall to resume training.”
The two fillies are expected to race again sooner than later. Tracy Meyer stated, “Desert Notion is projected to race again the end of December, hopefully in a MSW at Penn National. Medalbu will be ready to race as a 3 year old in January. Since they are both PA breds, looking at races at Penn and Parx. Being both breeder and owner has its advantages with the additional purse money. They have both grown a lot since the summer and we are very happy with their progression and excited about their potential.”
The horses at In The Clutch Equine – Meyer racing Stables are truly a family affair. Tracy Meyer explained, “My husband Joey Meyer is still training and will continue to do so with all the horses we are raising. His expertise with young horses is amazing. He is one of the few hands on trainers in the business who does it all. Trainer, rider, farrier, stall mucker….he knows each horse inside and out.”
What’s next for Medalbu and Desert Notion? Tracy Meyer said, “We took Medalbu and Desert Notion to Laurel Racetrack on Dec 16 for easy works. We plan on taking them back to Laurel to work again on the 22nd, weather permitting.”
As far as the future of In The Clutch Equine – Meyer Racing Stables, Tracy Meyer told us, “We are excited about the next upcoming crop of two year olds. Supero was brought to the Training Center in September as a yearling to be broke, along with our other yearling, Janealee. They are both turned out again for the winter, and we plan on bringing them back to the Training Center in February to resume a 2 year olds in training program. We are very excited about Janealee. She is a full sister to Medalbu, and is NY bred. We plan on taking her to Saratoga in 2014.”
Tracy Meyer added, “2015 will be another exciting year as we introduce our next crop of 2 year olds which includes a MD bred Touch Gold colt and a WV bred Smarty Jones filly. Two of our broodmares are in foal. Malibu Moment (Malibu Moon) is in foal to Nicanor (full brother to Barbaro)…and Sky Can Fly (Peace Rules) is in foal to Cat Thief. Stay tuned!”
Keep up with Medalbu, Desert Notion, and the entire In The Clutch Equine team by following Meyer Racing Stables on facebook. Tracy Meyer also shares her beautiful photos and Equine Art on facebook. A must “like” page!
Lady and The Track will continue to track the triumphs and tribulations of the 2011 fouls as they begin their 2014 racing careers as three-year-olds and travel down the Kentucky Derby Trail. Good Luck! Safe Run!
Brilliant Messi, trained by Patrick Byrne and owned by Sandford Racing, takes a break from training to get a little dirty:
Chas’s Legacy, who is named after Chuck Sandford’s father, is enjoying his days at Palm Meadows Training Center: