Photo: Gerry Hart, Assiniboia Downs
On a Sunday evening in mid-July I was reviewing the
weekend’s stakes winners when the $30,000 Harry Jeffers Stakes at Assiniboia
Downs caught my eye. It wasn’t really that particular stakes race that I
noticed, but it was the winner of the race, Edison. When I saw the name I immediately began to wonder why I
recognized that three-year-old colt, especially when he had just won an obscure
race in Winnipeg, Canada.
After a quick visit to the Horse Racing Nation database, a pedigree query, and a look at the
past performances for the Harry Jeffers Stakes, I realized that I knew Edison
has a horse that had been mentioned as a talented member of the Todd Pletcher
Edison was foaled on March 7, 2011, the product of a mating
of Bernardini and Heart of Grace. That dam won only one race and earned a mere
$8,000. She had two previous foals that each also had only won a single race.
Yet, at the Fasig-Tipton March 2013 sale, Edison brought just shy of one
million dollars, $950,000 to be exact. The obviously impressive two-year-colt
was purchased by Demi O’Bryne, agent for a Michael Tabor and John Magnier ownership
As do many of that group’s promising juveniles, Edison was eventually
sent to the barn of trainer Todd Pletcher, which at that time meant a trip to
Gulfstream Park. Edison’s racing career began on Dec. 22, 2013, and since then
he has run a total of six times. There is nothing unusual about that, but what is
interesting is that Edison has travelled 5,799 miles to do it.
A – Edison’s
career began on the turf course at Gulfstream Park when he ran in a maiden
special weight going a mile and a sixteenth. He finished fifth in a field of
eight beaten by five lengths at odds of 18.30-1, unusually high for a Pletcher
first-time starter. His running line said that he made a middle move and showed
His second start came a month later on Jan. 26, 2104, again
on the Gulfstream grass. This time his odds had dropped to 8-1 and now he beat
a field of nine leading gate to wire in the nine furlong MSW.
B – As the
Pletcher barn headed north to Belmont Park for the spring meeting, so did
Edison. On May 10, 2014, now a three-year-old, the Bernardini colt ran in a
first level allowance race at Belmont on a turf course labeled, GOOD. Here
Edison finished third, in contention throughout the race, beaten by five and a
Sometime between a May 26th Belmont workout and June 21st,
Edison was sold to trainer Robertino Diodoro representing his primary ownership
group. For those of you who don’t know Diodoro, he is a very successful trainer
(2014 stats as of 8/18/14 were 573: 143-98-87 for $2,325,911) who currently has
strings of horses at Del Mar and Canterbury Park in Minnesota. Diodoro is
reported to always be on the look out for horses to purchase.
C – Edison went
into training at Canterbury Park and made his first start for the new ownership
a winning one when he won a first level turf optional claiming allowance at
odds of .70-1.
D – Diodoro
decided to change things up by trying to race Edison on the dirt, so he sent
his horse to Assiniboia Downs in Canada on July 16th. It isn’t very often that
a million dollar two-year-old shows up at AsD to run in one of their stakes
races. The bettors sent him off at odds of .90-1. Edison again won, but now it
was in come from behind fashion.
It was at this point that I became interested in the travels
of Edison. Prior to the Haskell, I stopped in Pletcher’s Monmouth Park barn to
ask his assistant Anthony Sciametta if he knew about Edison’s change of
ownership. Sciametta is also Pletcher’s assistant at Gulfstream during the
winter and had worked with Edison there. He had not heard about the change, but
he was quite intrigued and said, “I’m sure they paid good money for him.”
I was quite curious about what would come of Edison. I
wondered whether this once highly sought after juvenile would spend the rest of
his career toiling at low-level racetracks.
E – Fast forward
to this past weekend, when Diodoro sent Edison to Northlands Park in Edmonton
to run in the $200,000 Canadian Derby (G3), a race that the trainer had also
won in 2013.
Edison was sent off as the 2.60-1 second choice in the field
of eleven three-year-olds. As you can see in the video, he drew off to win by more
than 11 lengths to become a graded stakes winner. The winner’s share of the purse was $110,000 (US),
bringing Edison’s career stats to 6: 4-0-1 for $181,186.
I have added Edison to my stable mail so that I can continue
to follow the career of a horse that may have just begun to tap into the potential that he promised at that Fasig-Tipton sale in 2013.