The Fair Grounds Racing Club had an impressive run! Its two Spendthrift Farm sprinters earned $326,500, and a portion of these winnings were donated to support a pediatric cancer research trial study at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles per the wishes of Spendthrift owner B. Wayne Hughes.
As we mentioned in our January post, Club colt Excitations was sold to Purple Rein Racing, a new stable created by L.A. Lakers owner Jeanie Buss that also gives back to charity. We are very proud of his race record with the Club (10: 2-4-1) that included wins at Fair Grounds and Keeneland, and his career-best second-place finish in the G2 Amsterdam Stakes (6 1/2 F) at Saratoga last summer.
Since his move to Purple Rein Racing, Excitations was first based at Oaklawn Park in Doug O’Neill’s stable, but has since joined his runners at Santa Anita Park and has been training well in sunny Southern California. Unfortunately the weather did not cooperate on the day of his return to racing on March 2nd; it was reminiscent of Kentucky Derby Day 2017 and Excitations’ Pat Day Mile run, when we learned that the colt was less than enthusiastic to compete over a sloppy track!
In this 6 1/2 furlong allowance race in March at Santa Anita in which he faced a tough field including Ten Blessings (third in the G1 Malibu Stakes last December at SA) and Illinois Derby winner Multiplier, Excitations finished 7th ahead of second favorite Red Lightning, who didn’t care for the muddy track either! We look forward to his “real” return to racing over a fast track and continue to follow his progress, updates and photos on the Doug O’Neill Racing Stable facebook page.
We are equally proud of Efforting’s race record under the Club (9: 3-5-0): two wins at Fair Grounds, as well as a victory in the Acadiana Stakes (7 F) and a second-place finish in the Louisiana Legends Soiree Stakes (1 mile), both held at Evangeline Downs last summer. It was originally planned for the filly to be retired as a broodmare for Spendthift this spring, but she has since been sold to a syndicate called Horseplayers Racing Club, consisting of a number of Club members who wish to keep her racing during 2018. The filly will continue to be trained by Al Stall Jr. and race the Louisiana track circuit.
Following her decisive win by two 1/4 lengths in a 6 furlong allowance race on February 17 at Fair Grounds for the Club, she returned to this track on March 8 under new ownership in another 6 furlong allowance; this race proved to be too quick of a turnaround for her as she finished 6th. Al is now giving her some more time between races and is pointing her next toward the Louisiana Legends Sprint (5 1/2 F) at Evangeline Downs on May 26. We will be watching her triumphant return to the track and hope for continued success for this special filly!
Thanks for reading!
Editor, Antebellum Turf Times