Oaklawn News

Oaklawn Report


Tuesday, July 11, 2017


It Tiz Well became the sixth graduate from the Honeybee Stakes to win a stakes race and eighth overall winner to emerge from the 1 1/16-mile race for 3-year-old fillies; Hall of Famer and eight-time Oaklawn leading trainer Steve Asmussen won four of the six stakes during the Iowa Racing Festival, including the $250,000 Iowa Derby (G3) with Oaklawn maiden winner Hence. 


It Tiz Well Becomes Eighth Honeybee Graduate to Win with Delaware Oaks Score


Tommy Town Thoroughbreds LLC's It Tiz Well became the eighth graduate of Oaklawn’s 2017 Honeybee Stakes to return and win in the $300,000 Delaware Oaks (G3) Saturday at Delaware Park. It Tiz Well, the 4-5 favorite for Hall of Fame trainer Jerry Hollendorfer, finished a half-length ahead of Proud and Fearless in the 1 1/16-mile race contested over a fast track. The winning time was 1:43.55.


It Tiz Well ($3.60) was ridden by Drayden Van Dyke, who grew up near Oaklawn and won an Eclipse Award as the country’s outstanding apprentice of 2014. The filly was was making her third start since winning the $200,000 Honeybee Stakes (G3) March 11 at Oaklawn.


The Honeybee, which drew 11 starters, was the final major prep for Oaklawn’s biggest race for 3-year-old fillies, the $400,000 Fantasy Stakes (G3) April 14.


It Tiz Well became the sixth Honeybee starter to return and win a stakes race, following Ever So Clever (Fantasy), Benner Island ($200,000 Eight Belles, G2), Someday Soon ($75,000 Tomboy), Chanel’s Legacy ($65,000 Panthers) and Elate ($50,000 Light Hearted). Two other Honeybee starters, My Sweet Stella and Lovely Bernadette, returned to win allowance/optional claiming races.


My Sweet Stella sold Monday for $222,000 at the Fasig-Tipton Summer Selected Horses of Racing Age Sale.


It Tiz Well raised her career earnings to $466,840 with her Delaware Oaks victory, her fourth in eight starts overall.


Festival Fun


Eight-time Oaklawn training champion Steve Asmussen won 4 of 6 races in the annual Iowa Festival of Racing last week at Prairie Meadows. He won Friday’s $100,000 Iowa Distaff Stakes (Danzatrice) and $250,000 G3 Iowa Derby (Hence) and Saturday’s $100,000 Iowa Sprint Handicap (Union Jackson) and $300,000 G3 Prairie Meadows Cornhusker Handicap (Iron Fist).


Union Jackson and Iron Fist were ridden by Ricardo Santana Jr., Oaklawn’s champion jockey the last five years.


Hence ($9.40) broke his maiden Jan. 16, becoming Asmussen’s 500th career Oaklawn winner. Hence ran seventh in the $500,000 Southwest Stakes (G3) Feb. 20 at Oaklawn before winning the $800,000 Sunland Derby (G3) March 26 at Sunland Park. He then ran 11th in the Kentucky Derby and ninth in the Preakness.


Even-money favorite Union Jackson ($4), an allowance/optional claiming winner at the 2016 Oaklawn meeting, finished a half-length ahead of Apprehender, with Storm Advisory another neck farther back in third. Apprehender won Oaklawn’s King Cotton Stakes in 2013 and 2014. Storm Advisory was the 2017 King Cotton winner.


The Iowa Festival of Racing began with Danny Caldwell’s Dreamin ($16.40) winning Thursday’s $100,000 Saylorville Stakes for filly and mare sprinters. Caldwell has topped the owner’s standings at Oaklawn the last four years.


Caldwell claimed Dreamin for $25,000 out of an eighth-place finish March 17 at Oaklawn. Dreamin won an April 7 starter/optional claimer at Oaklawn and her last three starts at Prairie Meadows. She sold for $125,000 Monday at the Fasig-Tipton Summer Selected Horses of Racing Age Sale.


Cleverness, a Feb. 25 allowance/optional claiming winner at Oaklawn, finished second in the Iowa Distaff.


Finish Lines


Oaklawn-raced Oak Brook finished second in the $100,000 Arlington Handicap (G3) at 1 3/16 miles on the turf Saturday at Arlington Park. … Oaklawn-raced Toews On Ice ran second $55,000 Special Stakes for sprinters Saturday at Albuquerque. … Oaklawn-raced Vertical Oak and Noble Freud ran second and third, respectively, in the $150,000 Victory Ride Stakes (G3) for 3-year-old filly sprinters Sunday at Belmont Park. … Ship Disturber beat $20,000 claimers Friday at Ellis Park for his fourth consecutive victory and sixth overall this year. Ship Disturber is North America’s co-fifth-winningest horse in 2017, according to Equibase, racing’s official data gathering organization. The 5-year-old gelding won two races this year at Oaklawn.