Barn Notes: Thursday, July 17, 2014
In Today's Notes: Main Sequence Possible for Million; Coolmore's Adelaide Aiming to Secretariat; Motion Brings Stakes Hot Streak to Arlington with Interrupted; Ingrid Mason Lands 100th Arlington Win
MAIN SEQUENCE POSSIBLE FOR MILLION
The Niarchos Family's Main Sequence is currently possible for Arlington Million XXXII, according to trainer Graham Motion. The 5-year-old chestnut gelding was recently victorious in his first American start in the Grade I United Nations on July 6 for the Fair Hill-based conditioner and has since exited the race in fine form.
"Main Sequence is doing well and is a possibility for the Million," Motion stated. "He really came out of the race very well and I think he would fit in a race like (the Million)."
A son of champion American sprinter Aldebaran from the family of English Oaks winner Light Shift, Main Sequence was second in the Group I English Derby behind champion Camelot in 2012. Last year, as a 4-year-old, he was a game second to Mukhadram – recent winner of the Group I Eclipse Stakes – in the Group III Brigadier Gerard Stakes and was thought of highly enough to attempt the Group I Champion Stakes last October in his European swan song.
"He was keeping good company in Europe, but I would have been very happy if he would have simply hit the board in the United Nations," Motion continued. "Winning the race – and winning impressively – exceeded my expectations.
"He is a horse who doesn't want to be rushed. We will look at the Sword Dancer (Aug. 17 at Saratoga), as well, for him," Motion said. "I know the owners also have another horse possibly going in the Million."
The Niarchos Family's French-based Group I-placed Smoking Sun is also being aimed toward a possible run in the Million. The Pascal Bary-trained Group II winner was last seen finishing a good second in the Group I Singapore Airlines International Cup this Spring.
COOLMORE'S ADELAIDE AIMING TO SECRETARIAT
Adelaide, who was recently a game runner-up as the favorite in the Grade I Belmont Derby Invitational on July 6, has been confirmed as aiming toward the Grade I Secretariat Stakes, according to the International Racing Bureau. The son of Galileo seized the lead in mid-stretch at Belmont before being headed and beaten in a photo by Phipps Stable's Mr. Speaker.
Owned by Mrs. John Magnier, Michael Tabor and Derrick Smith of international powerhouse stable Coolmore, the Irish-bred was running on a mere 16 days of rest after a tough beat in the Group II King Edward Stakes over an arduous 1½-miles course at Royal Ascot. With a six-week gap between the only two summer Grade I races for turf sophomores in America, the consistent bay colt may appreciate the extra time. Never out of the exacta in five career starts, Adelaide landed the Group III Gallinule Stakes at The Curragh over the Secretariat's 1¼-miles distance.
MOTION BRINGS STAKES HOT STREAK TO ARLINGTON WITH INTERRUPTED
Graham Motion has been on a rampage in recent weeks, winning six stakes races at four different tracks so far in the month of July, including the Grade I United Nations Stakes at Monmouth and Grade II Delaware Oaks in back-to-back days on July 5 and 6. On Saturday, he brings his East Coast show to the Midwest with the aptly named Interrupted in the Grade III $150,000 Arlington Oaks.
"I'm pleased with her," Motion said. "We've had this race in mind for a while and she's training well. Part of the reason we're running being that it's graded and a mile and an eighth."
Owned by long-time Motion client Pin Oak Stud, Interrupted is a lightly raced daughter of Broken Vow exiting an efficient victory in the Listed $100,000 Penn Oaks over a grassy mile. Such was her third in four starts and first since her only failure – a third in the Grade III Florida Oaks in March behind Grade I Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf runner-up Testa Rossi and subsequent Grade III Arlington Classic male-conquering Istanford.
Out of the multiple stakes winning turf marathon mare Alternate (by Seattle Slew), she is a half-sister to multiple graded stakes-winner Alternation. Alternate herself won three stakes, including two editions of Robert G. Dick Memorial at Delaware Park, and placed in five graded stakes on both turf and dirt. She is also a half-sister to Pin Oak's Canadian Horse of the Year Peaks and Valleys. Motion trained both Broken Vow and Alternate.
"It's interesting that (Alternation) was a dirt horse. I definitely think distance is not a problem (for Interrupted). Whether she goes three turns (like her dam), we shall see," Motion commented. "If anything, I'm a little surprised with how precocious she's been. She won twice as a 2-year-old. That's one of the reasons, though, that we have taken it slowly with her."
A victory and positive shipping experience could open more Arlington doors for the charge, as fillies in the past have often gone on to compete in the Hatoof Stakes and Grade III Pucker Up later in the meet. "I really don't have any big plans with her after this. I'm taking it a little at a time," Motion explained. "There are certain 3-year-old races out there that would be appealing. If she can be competitive, that's what we hope for."
INGRID MASON LANDS 100th ARLINGTON WIN
Locally based conditioner Ingrid Mason joined the 100-win club at Arlington International Racecourse on Sunday when Dominant Suh won the seven-furlong claiming nightcap for owner Eduardo Condelas. An ex-jockey who trained her first registered starter in 2004, Mason has become a mainstay at Arlington over the last five years and now won 195 races, overall.
Mason is currently tied for second with veteran Mike Stidham with 21 victories at the 2014 meet and is 10 wins astern Larry Rivelli. She currently sports a meet strike rate of 33% and has hit the board with her charges an excellent 76% of the time.