Oct 24, 2021
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Public Sector impresses in G2 Hill Prince; points to G1 Hollywood Derby

by NYRA Press Office

Klaravich Stables’ Public Sector maintained a streak of graded stakes victories by capturing Saturday’s Grade 2, $400,000 Hill Prince, a nine-furlong inner turf test for sophomores at Belmont Park.

Expertly piloted by Irad Ortiz, Jr., the bay son of Kingman settled five lengths back in third down the backstretch before making a sweeping move in the stretch to wear down Never Surprised to win by a neck. The victory garnered a career-best 91 Beyer Speed Figure.

Public Sector arrived at his nine-furlong debut off two sharp Saratoga graded stakes coups, taking the Grade 2 National Museum of Racing Hall of Fame on August 6 and the Grade 3 Saranac four weeks later.

“He had been training really well and he’s a horse that just continues to improve,” Brown said. “It was a great ride. Irad gave him a great trip and the horse really responded well to him.”

The victory marked a ninth graded-stakes triumph during the month of October for Brown, seven of which were at Belmont.

Brown applauded the pacesetting runner-up Never Surprised, who also rounded out the exacta in the Saranac.

“The pacemaker is a good horse and runs fast numbers and, I thought, a legitimate contender to win the race,” Brown said. “When they kicked on for home, there was a moment there I didn’t think we’d be able to reel him in. I have a lot of respect for that horse.”

Public Sector is scheduled to make his next start in the Grade 1, $400,000 Hollywood Derby on November 28 at Del Mar. He will be following a familiar path as Brown and Klaravich Stables teamed up to capture last year’s Hollywood Derby with multiple Grade 1-winner Domestic Spending, one of the likely favorites for the upcoming Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Turf.

Peter Brant’s three-time Grade 1-winner Raging Bull breezed five-eighths in 1:01.80 in company Sunday with graded stakes winner Orglandes over firm Belmont inner turf.

“They both worked great,” Brown said.

Raging Bull, a last out third in the Grade 1 Woodbine Mile on September 18, will make his next start in the Grade 1, $2 million Breeders’ Cup Mile on November 6 at Del Mar. The 6-year-old Dark Angel bay was 10th in last year’s Mile.

Michael Dubb, Madaket Stables, Wonder Stables and Michael J. Caruso’s Orglandes finished a game second in the Grade 3 Fasig-Tipton Waya last out and will target the $100,000 Zagora on October 31. The daughter of Le Havre won her graded stakes debut last year when shipping to Del Mar to capture the Grade 3 Red Carpet going 11 furlongs.

“It was nice to get her back on track in her last race,” Brown said. “We had some high hopes for her and things just didn’t pan out. Hopefully she can continue to turn things around.” 

Sail By breezes in preparation for G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf

Treadway Racing Stable’s homebred Sail By breezed three-eighths in 37.40 over the Belmont inner turf Sunday in preparation for the Grade 1, Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf on November 5 at Del Mar. 

“It started off a little slower than I was anticipating, but that was fine. She’s done everything and she’s ready – she just needs to maintain herself,” trainer Leah Gyarmati said. “I had the rider on the radio and I said, ‘You need to pick it up.’ And she took off. She looked fantastic going down the stretch and galloped out great. I was happy with that. 

“She’s a nice filly and she’s smart,” Gyarmati added. “She’s almost too easy to ride. She’s not rank. She’s just going to do whatever you ask. I was happy with it. She came out of it great and cooled out great. She was squealing and happy.”

Sail By closed strongly to break her maiden at first asking in June at Belmont in a six-furlong maiden special weight and followed with a similar closing effort in the five-furlong Colleen on August 1 at Monmouth Park.

Following a pace-setting third in the off-the-turf P.G. Johnson in September at Saratoga Race Course, the Astern bay stalked and pounced to victory in the 1 1/16-mile Grade 2 Miss Grillo last out on October 16 over firm going at Belmont. 

“She has several races under her belt and they’ve been spaced nicely,” Gyarmati said. “She really just needs to maintain her fitness. We just have to keep her happy. She gallops very forwardly, too.”

Sail By will ship to California on October 31 and will be met there by Gyarmati, who saddled Treadway Racing Stable’s Coasted to a game runner-up effort in the 2016 Juvenile Fillies Turf at Santa Anita, rallying from last-of-14 under Hall of Famer Mike Smith to miss by a half-length to New Money Honey.

“I feel like it was one more jump and we had it. She ran huge,” Gyarmati recalled. “It was frustrating. She was sitting last and of course there was traffic, so you just wonder how much that had to with the fact that we didn’t get up there in time. That said, I can’t complain about finishing second at the Breeders’ Cup.”

Coasted won that year’s P. G. Johnson and finished third in the Grade 3 Miss Grillo and although the two fillies have followed a similar path, Gyarmati said Sail By is handier.

“She’s shown she can do whatever depending on the pace of the race,” Gyarmati said. “When she sprinted, she came from last first time out. She was as professional as could be – tipped out, took off and kept going.

“When there was no pace in the longer races, she ends up being closer," Gyarmati added. “She’s versatile and that’s a good thing when you’re not sure what you’re going to be running against.” 

Junior Alvarado, aboard for Sail By’s last two efforts, is confirmed to ride at Del Mar. 

Shifty She registers 94 BSF in G3 Noble Damsel score; Ny Traffic mapping a path from Hudson to G1 Cigar Mile

Chris Pallas and Harvey Rothenberg’s Shifty She paired up a career-best 94 Beyer for her impressive gate-to-wire score in Saturday’s Grade 3, $200,000 Noble Damsel, a one-mile Widener turf test for fillies and mares.

The 5-year-old Gone Astray mare missed her 4-year-old campaign with a tendon issue but has enjoyed a productive season after joining the barn of trainer Saffie Joseph, Jr., winning 3-of-6 starts. 

“She was very gutsy,” said Joseph, Jr. of the Noble Damsel effort. “She always shows up and her numbers were trending in the right direction. It was a competitive race also and you could finish second or third and still run your race, but I’m glad she got the job done and is a Grade 3 winner.”

Shifty She was reunited Saturday with jockey Edwin Gonzalez, who had piloted the hard-trying bay to victories in the open-company Powder Break in May and the Ginger Punch against Florida-breds in June, both at Gulfstream Park.

“He's 3-for-3 on her now. He gave her a very good ride,” Joseph, Jr. said. 

Joseph, Jr. said he knew he’d landed a talented mare when she battled gamely on the lead in her seasonal debut traveling one-mile over firm Gulfstream turf in April to finish a close fourth off a 16-month layoff.

“I gained so much respect for her that day. There was a wicked speed duel but she never gave in off the layoff,” Joseph, Jr. said. “She gives you her all each and every time.”

Joseph, Jr. said Shifty She’s long-term target is the Grade 3, $500,000 Pegasus Filly and Mare Turf on January 29 at Gulfstream.

 “That's the dream goal. The Pegasus is at home at Gulfstream so it makes sense to backtrack from that and maybe get one more race in before,” Joseph, Jr. said.

Joseph, Jr. said Shifty She bounced out of the race in good order and will ship back to his care at Gulfstream this afternoon. 

John Fanelli, Cash is King, LC Racing, Paul Braverman and Team Hanley’s New York-bred Ny Traffic breezed a half-mile in 48.27 Sunday over the Gulfstream main track.

The 4-year-old Cross Traffic gray, bred by Brian Culnan, enjoyed a productive sophomore season through a record of 7-1-3-1, including a game runner-up effort to Authentic in the Grade 1 Haskell at Monmouth.

Ny Traffic opened his current campaign with a dominant 6 3/4-length score in a seven-furlong state-bred optional claiming sprint, garnering a career-best 103 Beyer. He returned with a good second to Informative in the Grade 3 Salvator Mile ahead of off-the-board efforts traveling nine furlongs in the Grade 3 Monmouth Cup in July and the Grade 2 Charles Town Classic on August 27. 

Joseph, Jr. said he is hoping that Ny Traffic will return to winning form in Saturday’s 6 1/2-furlong $150,000 Hudson on Empire Showcase Day with an eye towards a start in the Grade 1, $750,000 Cigar Mile Handicap on December 4 at the Big A.

“His comeback at seven [furlongs] at Belmont was in a New York-bred race and he ran well. After that we ran him long at Monmouth and it was OK,” Joseph, Jr. said. “I've always wanted to bring him back to one turn because that seven-eighths race was so impressive. If he runs well our target would be the Cigar Mile in December, but we'll go one race at a time.”

Joseph, Jr. said Ny Traffic has worked consistently well at Gulfstream dating back to late September.

 “He's coming into good form,” Joseph, Jr. said. “He worked very good this morning. All being well he should run a good race.” 

Queen’s Plate-winner Safe Conduct targets $150K Gio Ponti

Safe Conduct wrote his name into the history books in August with a game head score in the $1 million Queen’s Plate, first leg of the Canadian Triple Crown at 10 furlongs over Tapeta at Woodbine Racetrack.

Trained by Phil Serpe, the Bodemeister sophomore followed with a fading eighth in the 1 1/2-mile Breeders’, the third leg of the Canadian Triple Crown contested over a yielding E. P. Taylor Turf Course.

“He just doesn't want any part of soft ground,” Serpe said. “It had rained a lot up there and he just wasn't getting a hold of the track.”

Safe Conduct has kept good company through his sophomore season, winning a 1 1/16-mile optional-claimer over firm Belmont turf in May by 2 1/2-lengths over Public Sector, who has won his last three starts in graded company including Saturday’s Grade 2 Hill Prince.

Safe Conduct exited that effort to finish fourth in the off-the-turf Grade 3 Pennine Ridge in May and faded to eighth in the Grade 1 Belmont Derby Invitational in July over good going.

 Serpe said he is hopeful Safe Conduct will find firm footing in the $150,000 Gio Ponti, a 1 1/16-mile test for sophomores on November 26 at the Big A.

“If you look back at his last race on a firm turf, it was an impressive race. He flew home. That's the type of race we're looking forward to seeing him running on the grass,” Serpe said. “We were very happy to win Canada's biggest race. There's a lot of prestige behind it. I'd love to see him come back now and get his turf races sorted out.”

 Safe Conduct worked a half-mile in 51.69 Sunday over the Belmont inner turf. 

“He went a nice easy half, but he did it well,” Serpe said.

Philly Eagles and Make Mischief breeze for stakes engagements

Tracy Farmer’s Philly Eagles, with exercise rider Janelle Castonguay up for Hall of Fame trainer Mark Casse, breezed a half-mile in 50.26 Sunday over the Belmont inner turf in preparation for the $100,000 Chelsey Flower, a 1 1/16-mile turf test for juveniles fillies on October 31.

“I was happy with the way she went,” said Casse assistant Shane Tripp. “The turf was a little bit soft from the rain we had last night, but she did it well within herself.”

A maiden winner at Doncaster in June for her former trainer Alice Haynes, the Havana Gold bay made her North American debut with a solid fourth in the 1 1/16-mile Grade 2 Miss Grillo over firm Belmont turf October 2 where she was bumped at the break and checked.

“I really loved the effort she gave. It was a pretty stout group,” Tripp said. “She's doing well and has acclimated well. I like where she's at now compared to Saratoga. I’m looking forward to leading her over.”

Gary Barber’s multiple graded-stakes placed New York-bred Make Mischief worked five-eighths in 1:00.91 Friday over Big Sandy in preparation for the 1 1/16-mile $250,000 Empire Distaff on Saturday’s Empire Showcase Day card.

“She worked really well. She loves it here. I like the way she gets across the main track,” Tripp said.

The Into Mischief bay graduated at first asking in June 2020 over Big Sandy and followed with runner-up efforts in the Grade 3 Schuylerville and Grade 2 Adirondack, both at Saratoga.

Through nine sophomore starts, Make Mischief has posted a record of 3-1-2, including a win in the Maddie May in February at the Big A and a close third in the Grade 1 Acorn in June at Belmont. She finished second by a neck last out in the nine-furlong Fleet Indian on August 27 at the Spa.

 “She's a warrior that will give you everything she has every time. I'm pleased with how she's coming into it,” Tripp said. “She's an open-company type horse. Her last effort upstate against state-breds was impressive. I expect her to run well.”

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NYRA Press Office

Trainer Ken McPeek has garnered plenty of knowledge and experience since starting his first runner in 1985. He’s known for his fearlessness when taking a gamble with his horses, like when he sent out Sarava to a shocking 70-1 victory in the 2002 Belmont Stakes for the dark bay’s first try against graded company, and more recently, scored a Grade 1 Preakness victory with upset filly Swiss Skydiver in 2020.