Aqueduct Racetrack Notes
- Dr Ardito one of three G2 Cigar Mile contenders for Brown; Sierra Leone possible for G2 Remsen
- Honor D Lady points to G3 Comely; Ny Traffic possible for G2 Cigar Mile
- Daddy Knows back in action in Sunday allowance
- Aqueduct Racetrack fall meet Week 4 stakes probables
OZONE PARK, N.Y. – Trainer Chad Brown reported that he is considering the Grade 2, $500,000 Cigar Mile Handicap presented by NYRA Bets on December 2 at Aqueduct Racetrack for a trio of his horses, including graded stakes-placed Dr Ardito, multiple graded stakes-placed Accretive and recent allowance runner-up Cascais.
Owned by Michael Dubb and Michael J. Caruso, the New York-bred Dr Ardito was a last-out narrow runner-up in the local Grade 2 Forty Niner on October 28 at a one-turn mile, finishing a half-length behind Everso Mischievous. The 5-year-old Liam’s Map gray collected a pair of stakes efforts against fellow state-breds this year in the Haynesfield on February 20 at Aqueduct and the Evan Shipman on August 11 at Saratoga Race Course.
“He ran against open company last time and did really well,” Brown said of Dr Ardito.
Klaravich Stables’ Accretive was most recently third in the Forty Niner after finishing a game second in the Grade 2 Vosburgh to Cody’s Wish, who exited that effort to score a second straight win in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile. The son of Practical Joke was a dual winner at the Spa this summer going six furlongs and one mile. He finished a close second in last year’s Grade 2 Amsterdam at Saratoga, beaten a neck by Gunite.
Three Chimneys Farm’s Cascais made his first start in nearly a full calendar year last out in an October 21 allowance going a one-turn mile at the Big A. The effort was the son of Into Mischief’s first start since last November, when he broke his maiden in gate-to-wire fashion going a one-turn mile to defeat eventual Grade 1-winner Tapit Trice.
Brown mentioned first-out maiden winner Sierra Leone as a possible contender for the Grade 2, $250,000 Remsen for juveniles going nine furlongs on December 2 at the Big A. The son of Gun Runner bobbled after the break, raced in between horses down the backstretch, but was able to surge to a 1 1/4-length victory under little urging from Manny Franco. The win garnered a 71 Beyer Speed Figure.
“I’m considering the Remsen,” Brown said. “He was very professional in his first time out.”
The Remsen offers 10-5-3-2-1 Kentucky Derby qualifying points to the top-five finishers.
Owned by Mrs. John Magnier, Michael Tabor, Derrick Smith, Westerberg, Rocket Ship Racing and Peter Brant, Sierra Leone was a sale-topping $2.3 million purchase at the 2022 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Yearling Sale. He is out of the Grade 1-winning Malibu Moon mare Heavenly Love.
In the Grade 2, $250,000 Demoiselle for juvenile fillies going nine furlongs Brown said he has Catherine Wheel under consideration following a third-out maiden score going a one-turn mile on November 3 here. The daughter of Into Mischief is owned by Richard Schermerhorn, Team Hanley, Thirty Year Farm, Hill ‘n’ Dale Equine Holdings and Stretch Run Ventures. The Demoiselle offers 10-5-3-2-1 Kentucky Oaks qualifying points to the top-five finishers.
Brown will saddle Chili Flag and Faith in Humanity in Saturday’s $135,000 Forever Together for fillies and mares going 1 1/16 miles.
Klaravich Stables’ Faith in Humanity, by Lope de Vega, will try to make amends from an uncharacteristic sixth in an allowance optional claimer on September 17 over the Big A outer turf. The effort was her first start since capturing her 4-year-old debut in the Grade 3 Honey Fox on March 4 at Gulfstream Park, where she fended off a late rally from White Frost to win by a neck. As a 3-year-old, Faith in Humanity was a half-length winner of the Grade 3 Pebbles at Belmont at the Big A, defeating next-out Grade 1-winning stable mate Gina Romantica by a half-length.
Brown said he was puzzled by her uncharacteristic performance last out.
“I’m not sure why she stopped so abruptly like that,” Brown said. “We didn’t find anything wrong with her. I’m not sure what happened. She’s been training great, so we’re looking to get back on track here.”
Madaket Stables, Michael Dubb, and Michael Kisber’s Chili Flag has finished no worse than third since joining Brown’s stable over the winter. The 4-year-old Cityscape chestnut earned her first stateside score in her third start in North America, defeating her eventual graded stakes-placed stablemate Idea Generation by 6 1/4 lengths in a first-level allowance in July at Belmont Park.
“It’s time to get her up to stakes level. She’s always trained like quite a nice horse,” Brown said.
Honor D Lady points to G3 Comely; Ny Traffic possible for G2 Cigar Mile
Final Furlong Farm and Madaket Stables’ Honor D Lady, who made a successful return to dirt last out in the Grade 3 Remington Park Oaks, is on target for the Grade 3, $200,000 Comely, a nine-furlong test for sophomore fillies on November 25 at Aqueduct Racetrack.
Trained by Saffie Joseph, Jr., the Honor Code dark bay was second on debut over the Gulfstream Park main track last September before making her next six starts over Tapeta or turf.
The $40,000 Keeneland September Yearling Sale purchase graduated last October over Tapeta at Gulfstream one month before finishing a close third in the Grade 3 Mazarine over the Woodbine Racetrack synthetic. Honor D Lady won the Honey Ryder over the Gulfstream green in her seasonal debut in May and hit the board in both the Martha Washington [3rd] over the Gulfstream synthetic in June and the Grade 3 Selene [2nd] on Tapeta in July at Woodbine.
Honor D Lady did not handle the soft going when last-of-10 in the Grade 3 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Oaks Invitational in August, providing the team an opportunity to return Honor D Lady to dirt last out on September 24 where she posted a prominent 2 1/2-length win in the Remington Park Oaks under Tyler Conner.
“After her first start, we always wanted to get her back on the dirt but she was running well on the turf and the Tapeta, so the timing wasn’t right,” Joseph, Jr. said. “She ran poorly on the soft turf at Saratoga, so we decided to try the dirt and it was a good decision because she won the Grade 3. She has a good pedigree, so that was huge to get on her resume.
“Right now we’re on target for the Comely. She’s going to work this weekend and then we’ll decide for sure,” Joseph, Jr. added.
Honor D Lady, a half-sister to stakes-winner Churchtown, is out of the Blame mare Complicated. Her third dam is multiple Grade 1-winning millionaire Educated Risk, who is a half-sister to Hall of Famer Inside Information.
Joseph, Jr. said multiple graded stakes-placed New York-bred Ny Traffic is possible for the Grade 2 Cigar Mile Handicap presented by NYRA Bets on December 2 at the Big A.
Owned by John Fanelli, Cash is King, LC Racing, Paul Braverman and Team Hanley, the 6-year-old Cross Traffic grey has banked $989,590 through a record of 23-7-5-2. The three-time stakes winner has hit the board in five graded events topped by a nose defeat to Authentic in the 2020 Grade 1 Haskell.
Last year, he captured the Affirmed Success against fellow state-breds at Belmont and the open-company Chocolate Town at Penn National before wrapping up his campaign with a fourth-place effort in the John Morrissey Handicap at Saratoga.
Ny Traffic returned from a more than one-year layoff in September here to win a 6 1/2-furlong optional-claiming tilt by 2 1/2-lengths while garnering a 96 Beyer. He followed last out here on October 29 at the same distance with a close second in the state-bred Hudson, rallying from fourth to finish one length back of Rotknee. The strong effort over muddy and sealed going registered a 98 Beyer.
“He was on the go for a long time and he needed a break. We gave him a nice break and he came back good,” Joseph, Jr. said. “If you give them the time, most of the time they’ll reward you in the end.
“He’s possible for the Cigar Mile,” added Joseph, Jr. “He’ll breeze tomorrow and we’ll go from there.”
Joseph, Jr. said Ny Traffic would appreciate the one-turn configuration of the Cigar Mile.
“I think he’s better one turn. His best is probably 6 1/2-furlongs to one-mile, so we’re going to keep him there,” Joseph, Jr. said.
Bred in New York by Brian Culnan, Ny Traffic is out of the Graeme Hall mare Mamie Reilly.
Daddy Knows back in action in Sunday allowance
Adelphi Racing Club, Cutair Racing, Dark Horse Racing Stable and trainer Ray Handal’s New York-bred Daddy Knows will return from a five-month respite in Race 3 on Sunday at Aqueduct Racetrack, a one-mile allowance for 3-year-olds and up.
The 7-year-old son of Scat Daddy enters from back-to-back optional claiming scores against state-breds in May and June at Belmont Park, winning each in prominent fashion and by narrow margins over next-out winners Hush of a Storm and Sundaeswithsandy, respectively. Both efforts garnered a career-best 92 Beyer Speed Figure.
Handal said the one-mile mile configuration out of the Wilson Chute at Saratoga Race Course led him to point the gelding towards a winter campaign at Aqueduct.
“He’s doing good and we just gave him the summer off because he’s a difficult customer,” said Handal. “He did so good for us through the winter and he won the ‘2X,’ and he probably doesn’t want to go two turns, so we were sensitive to the variables of Saratoga. We turned him out and gave him the whole summer off and he’s doing good coming back. We’re excited to have him back.
Hopefully, this is the first step of a nice, long and healthy campaign for him.”
Daddy Knows is currently amid his fourth stint with Handal, who first claimed him in July 2021 and reclaimed him another three times within the past 18 months. Handal most recently haltered him for $25,000 in January and has enjoyed wins in 3-of-4 starts since.
Handal said his previous experience with Daddy Knows gives him a strong advantage.
“I have his number and he’s a real difficult horse to train,” said Handal. “When I saw they dropped him back in for a tag, I talked to the guys and said we should go back in for him. He’s got a lot of quirks to him, but we know him really well and he’s got a lot of personality. He’s a stone-cold runner and every time you put him in the gate, he’s going to run as far and as fast as he can. They’re hard to come by.”
Daddy Knows, a half-brother to the graded stakes-placed New York-bred millionaire Mr. Buff, boasts a record of 38-8-7-6 with total purse earnings of $436,455. He will emerge from post 5 on Sunday in rein to regular pilot Katie Davis.
Handal recently celebrated a return to the winner’s circle with Constitutionlawyer, who took a 1 1/4-mile optional claimer on October 13 at Belmont at the Big A from just off the pace. The win marked his first in three starts since taking a 1 1/16-mile allowance tilt in May at Belmont.
“He came out of it good,” said Handal. “He’s been galloping all week and he’ll breeze Sunday.”
Handal said he is hopeful the Constitution gelding’s latest win is a step towards the nine-furlong $150,000 Queens County on December 31 here.
“We’ve got him pointed to a ‘3X’ with a cutback from two turns to a one-turn mile, and as long as he runs well in there, we’ll probably run him in the Queens County,” said Handal.
A $170,000 purchase at the 2020 Keeneland September Yearling Sale, Constitutionlawyer has banked $247,505 in total purses through a record of 16-3-1-3.
Aqueduct Racetrack fall meet Week 4 stakes probables
Friday, November 24
G3 Fall Highweight
Probable: Bold Journey (Bill Mott), Cowan (Raymond Ginter, Jr.), Durante (David Jacobson), Win for Gold (Michelle Giangiulio)
Saturday, November 25
Probable: Defining Purpose (Kenneth McPeek), Honor D Lady (Saffie Joseph, Jr.), Ichiban (Linda Rice), Julia Shining (Todd Pletcher), Just Katherine (Jose Jimenez), Raging Sea (Chad Brown)
Possible: Chop Chop (Brad Cox), Corningstone (McPeek), Warrior’s Ransom (Jamie Ness)