Tuesday, September 06, 2016

Ivan Fallunovalot Returns a Winner

Multiple Oaklawn stakes winner Ivan Fallunovalot was a two-length winner of his comeback race Thursday night at Remington Park. He was making his first start since winning the $100,000 King Cotton Stakes for the second consecutive year Jan. 30 at Oaklawn. A quarter-crack kept the 6-year-old Texas-bred gelding from running again this year in Hot Springs.

Ridden in Thursday’s allowance race by Lindey Wade, Ivan Fallunovalot ran 6 furlongs over a good track in 1:08.72 and paid $3.20 as the 3-5 favorite.

Apprehender, winner of the King Cotton in 2013 and 2014, finished second for trainer Gene Jacquot, an Oaklawn regular.

Trainer Tom Howard of Hot Springs was using the race as Ivan Fallunovalot’s prep for the $150,000 David M. Vance Sprint Stakes Sept. 25 at Remington, a race the gelding has won the last two years.

Owned by Lewis Mathews of Bismarck, Ark., Ivan Fallunovalot won for the 13th time in 22 career starts and increased his earnings to $560,808. On behalf of Mathews, Howard claimed Ivan Fallunovalot for $25,000 at the 2014 at Oaklawn meeting.

The Texas Thoroughbred Association named Ivan Fallunovalot its 2015 Horse of the Year and champion older horse in February.

Ricardo’s Rides

Ricardo Santana Jr. rode 14 winners to finish ninth in the standings at the 40-day Saratoga meet that concluded Monday. Oaklawn’s leading jockey the last four years was riding regularly at Saratoga for the first time.

Santana’s 14 victories came from 192 mounts. He also had 20 seconds, 21 thirds and ranked 11th in purse earnings ($1,215,489).

Santana rode his 14 winners for nine trainers, including four for seven-time Oaklawn champion Steve Asmussen, the jockey’s biggest client in Hot Springs. He also rode three winners for John Terranova and one each for David Cannizzo, Kiaran McLaughlin, Rusty Arnold, Al Stall, Gary Contessa, Jaime Mejia and George Weaver.

Eleven of Santana’s 14 winners paid double digits, including Derby Champagne ($60), Copingaway ($54), For Honor ($49) and Gap Year ($42.80).

Santana is named on six horses Friday at Belmont Park.

Hart to Hart

Chris Hartman, Oaklawn’s leading trainer in 2015 and runner-up this year, tied for 10th at the 39-day Del Mar meet that closed Monday. He compiled a 7-5-4 record from 36 starts, and his stable earned $247,500 in purses.

Hartman took 18 horses to Del Mar, but was active at the claim box throughout the meeting. He also won three races at the recently concluded Ellis Park meeting.

Ellis Park Wrap

Seven-time Oaklawn training champion Steve Asmussen won 16 races to capture the title at the 30-day Ellis Park meeting that ended Monday.

Asmussen, who was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame last month, also led all trainers in purse earnings ($390,521). The Ellis Park division was overseen by Christy Hamilton, who has worked as an exercise rider for the trainer in Hot Springs.

Other Oaklawn regulars who cracked the top 10 at Ellis Park were Brad Cox and Chris Richard (seven victories), Kenny McPeek (six) and Ron Moquett of Hot Springs (five).

In the jockey standings, defending champion Didiel Osorio finished fifth with 20 victories. Chris Landeros tied for sixth with 18 victories. Jon Court was eighth with 16 victories. Osorio won four races this year at Oaklawn. Court (29 victories) and Landeros (23) were sixth and ninth, respectively, in this year’s Oaklawn standings.

Finish Lines

Royal Copy, from the first crop of 2012 Arkansas Derby winner Bodemeister, finished second, beaten a neck, in the $350,000 Hopeful Stakes (G1) for 2-year-olds Monday at Saratoga. Royal Copy is trained by Oaklawn regular and Hall of Famer D. Wayne Lukas. … Big Gray Rocket, a 2-year-old Tapit colt, broke his maiden by 6 ¾ lengths Monday at Del Mar for Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert and Frank Fletcher of North Little Rock, Ark. Big Gray Rocket, a $450,000 Keeneland September Yearling Sales graduate, covered 6 ½ furlongs over a fast track in 1:17.12 and paid $2.80 as the 2-5 favorite. Fletcher has campaigned several Oaklawn stakes winners and covets the Arkansas Derby more than any other race. … Oaklawn-raced Scuba and Hawaakom ran 1-2 in the $200,000 Greenwood Cup Stakes (G3) Monday at Parx. Scuba ran third in a 2015 allowance/optional claimer at Oaklawn. Hawaakom beat $30,000 claimers last year at Oaklawn. … Brad Cox, fourth in the 2016 Oaklawn trainer standings this year, won the final race of the Saratoga meeting Monday to move closer to a career high for victories in a year. Sassy Little Lila represented Cox’s 92nd victory this year. He won 98 races last year. Cox ($4,115,375) has already set a career high for purse earnings this year. … The Cox-trained Cash Control, fourth in the $100,000 Pippin Stakes Jan. 17 at Oaklawn, ran second in the $350,000 Kentucky Downs Ladies Turf Stakes Saturday at Kentucky Downs. … Hogy, third in a 2015 allowance/optional claimer at Oaklawn, finished second in the $350,000 Kentucky Downs Turf Sprint Stakes Saturday at Kentucky Downs. … Johnny Ortiz, who has overseen trainer Kellyn Gorder’s Oaklawn division in recent years, finished seventh with his first career starter as a trainer Monday at Ellis Park.

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