In 2006, broodmare La Comete produced a Speightstown colt who was
named Munnings and went on to win three graded stakes, including the
Grade 2 Woody Stephens and Grade 2 Tom Fool Handicap at Belmont. Three
years later, La Comete gave birth to a filly by Speightstown, and on
Saturday the full sister to Munnings will make her Belmont debut in the
Dream Supreme overnight stakes, a seven furlong race for 3-year-old
The filly’s name? Munnings Sister.
A Charles Fipke homebred, Munnings Sister has made six
starts to date, all in Northern California for trainer Tim McCanna.
After winning the California Wine Stakes on June 23 at Pleasanton in
her most recent start, she was sent to New York to train under
Barclay Tagg, but an injury she incurred during her journey delayed her
East Coast debut.
“She must have gotten hurt somewhere in transit because
she couldn’t move her head or neck or anything,” said Tagg. “She
couldn’t eat, she couldn’t put her head down, she couldn’t bite a fly,
she couldn’t move left or right or up and down. We worked on her, worked
on her, worked on her, and every time we felt we had her better she’d
get bad again. Every time we’d breeze her she’d get bad again. We had
the chiropractor work on her. We had the acupuncturist work on her.”
Tagg said Fipke sent Munnings Sister to New York to try
to earn graded black type, but the injury forced her to miss races like
the Grade 3 Victory Ride in July at Belmont and the Grade 1 Prioress
and Grade 1 Test in August at Saratoga Race Course.
“We missed all of the races we had been interested in,”
said Tagg. “This is the closest thing I could find to what we need. I
didn’t really want to run her seven furlongs first time out because
she’s never run over six furlongs in her life and is carrying top
weight. We’ve managed to get a series of breezes into her, but we don’t
know if she’ll be able to handle real pressure. But anyway, she’s a
lovely filly and she’s doing well, so we’re going to try it.”
Tagg said Fipke’s Jersey Town emerged from his victory in last Saturday’s Grade 2 Kelso Handicap in excellent shape.
“He was really stiff in his stall the next day,” said
Tagg. “I took him out and walked him around, and the more I walked him
the faster he got and the stronger her got. He finally had me all
broken out in a sweat trying to walk him. We walked him a couple of days
and grazed him every afternoon, and we started taking him back to the
track. Robin [Smullen, assistant to and exercise rider for Tagg] said
he feels better than he’s ever felt in his life.”
Tagg said that Sky Blazer, third in the Grade 2 Bernard Baruch Handicap, is probable for the Grade 3, $150,000 Knickerbocker on October 13, with Beau Choix under consideration for the Rob ‘n Gin overnight stakes on October 12.