Ticker
  • Tequilita (5-2) returns to the winner's circle in the Grade 3 Charles Town Oaks.Posted 13 hours ago
  • Sharp Azteca (1-2) draws clear in the Grade 2 Kelso.Posted 18 hours ago
  • West Coast (4-5) leaves the field far behind in the Grade 1 Pennsylvania Derby.Posted 18 hours ago
  • It Tiz Well (5-1) bests Abel Tasman in the Grade 1 Cotillion.Posted 19 hours ago
  • Coal Front (4-5) refuses to let American Pastime by in the Grade 3 Gallant Bob.Posted 19 hours ago
  • Page McKenney (6-1) digs down and holds on in the Pa Derby Champion Stakes.Posted 20 hours ago
  • Off Limits (8-5) glides by her competition in the Grade 3 Noble Damsel.Posted 21 hours ago
  • Capla Temptress (5-1) rolls home in the Natalma, while making her North American debut.Posted 6 days ago
  • Untamed Domain (3-1) kicks it in late to win the Summer Stakes at Woodbine.Posted 6 days ago
  • World Approval (2-1) shows he is much the best in the Grade 1 Woodbine Mile.Posted 7 days ago

Lemon Drop Dream Wins Count Fleet

Lemon Drop Dream Wins Count Fleet
Photo: Oaklawn Park
Mike McCarty’s Lemon Drop Dream and jockey Ricardo Santana, Jr. took advantage of a dream trip in the 41st running of the $300,000 Count Fleet Sprint Handicap (G3) at Oaklawn Thursday to give trainer Steve Asmussen his second consecutive win in the six furlong dash.

 

The 4-year-old  son of Lemon Drop Kid was brushed leaving the gate and dropped back as Heitai, the 3-5 favorite in the field of five horses, and Alsvid hooked up and set blistering fractions of :21 1/5 and :43 3/5 for the first half mile. Alsvid, ridden by Ken Tohill, shook off his rival inside the eighth pole, but Lemon Drop Dream closed with a powerful kick and strong urging from his rider to prevail by a neck in 1:09 on a fast track.

 

Apprehender was another 2 ¼ lengths back in third and was followed by Picko’s Pride and front runner Heitai, the winner of 4 straight stakes races in Louisiana and five of his last six efforts. Breeders’ Cup Sprint winner Secret Circle, who would have been the prohibitive favorite, was scratched earlier in the day by trainer Bob Baffert after it was discovered he had been given a tranquilizer prior to boarding the flight from California to Hot Springs on Wednesday.

 

“It was the best possible scenario,” said Asmussen, who won his first Count Fleet Sprint during Oaklawn’s signature Racing Festival of the South last year with Justin Phillip. “Heitai came in with the great form and somebody chose to tackle him. That worked out perfectly for us. It’s great to win this race two years in a row and the Racing Festival of the South is huge for us in the Midwest.”

 

Karl Broberg, Heitai’s trainer said, “That’s a tough way to lose a race when they go the half in forty-three and three. He got eye-balled, and hopefully, we can regroup and come back at five-eighths on the grass.”

 

The Kentucky-bred Lemon Drop Dream returned $16.20, $4.80 and $9.60 at odds of 7-1 . The victory was his fourth in nine starts and his first stakes score while he increased his bankroll to $168,130.

 

“We targeted this opportunity for him. He’s put together some really big sprint races this winter, but this is obviously his biggest win,” said Asmussen, who is well on his way to his third straight and sixth overall Oaklawn training title and who will saddle 9-5 morning line favorite Tapiture in the $1 million Arkansas Derby Saturday.

 

Stakes Quotes:

 

Trainer Steve Asmussen (1st, Lemon Drop Dream), won this race last year with Justin Phillip: “It was the best possible scenario. Heitai came in with the great form and somebody chose to tackle him. That perfectly worked out for us. It’s great to win this race two years in a row and the Racing Festival of the South is huge for us in the Midwest. We targeted this opportunity for him. He’s put together some really big sprint races this winter, but this is obviously his biggest win.

 

Trainer Chris Hartman (2nd, Alvid): “That’s a tough one. They were really cutting a run. They were flying. We knew we didn’t want to let him get away. I was hoping we’d be close. I didn’t think we’d be right on top of him.”

 

Trainer Karl Broberg (Beaten 3-5 favorite and 5th, Heitai) “That’s a tough way to lose a race when they go the half in fourty-three and three. He got eye-balled and hopefully we can regroup and come back at five-eighths on the grass.”

 

comments powered by Disqus

Related Pages

Related Stories

Top Stories