Smart Ellis is the Joe Btfsplk of Thoroughbred race horses. Bltfsplk
is the Al Capp character in Li’l Abner who is the world’s biggest jinx.
He walks around with a perpetually dark rain cloud a foot over his head.
Once he appears on any scene, dreadfully bad luck befalls anyone in his
“Steadied, five wide into stretch; bit awkward start; off slow,
steadied; rallied, bump late; inside, bumped, steadied,” are but five of
Daily Racing Form’s trouble line comments on Smart Ellis in his nine
career starts. He seems to encounter the Bermuda Triangle in every race.
Richard Mandella is hoping for clear sailing for Smart Ellis in
the Grade III Sir Beaufort Stakes scheduled for one mile on turf on
“He was born in trouble,” said the Hall of Fame trainer, who
conditions the chestnut son of 2004 Kentucky Derby winner Smarty Jones
for long-time clients Wertheimer and Frere, who also bred the chestnut
colt. “Even one race (on turf at Del Mar in July) he won he had
With an erratic local weather pattern of late, there was a
chance the race could be moved to the main track. “He’ll probably run
any way,” Mandella said.
The field for the Sir Beaufort: Fit to Rule, Edwin Maldonado,
4-1; Press Baron, Victor Espinoza, 10-1; Smart Ellis, Julien Leparoux,
9-2; Big Bane Theory, Joe Talamo, 9-2; Midnight Crooner, Martin Garcia,
3-1; Conspiracy, Garrett Gomez, 8-1; Battle Force, Mike Smith, 6-1; and
Silentio, Rafael Bejarano, 9-2.