Race of the Week 2017
HRN Original Blog:
Kentucky Oaks Runner

Groupie Doll Does it Again!

Groupie Doll wins her second Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Sprint.
Photo: Don August
Groupie Doll was absolutely devastating last year when capturing the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint, drawing away to win by 4 ½ lengths for her 5th consecutive win.This year the story was different, but the result was the same. In a field of 12 high class sprinters, Groupie Doll demonstrated exactly what it takes to make a true champion at Santa Anita in the 2013 Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint.
Breaking from post 11 Groupie Doll came out fast and sat 4th behind a blistering pace set by Sweet Lulu with Teddy’s Promise and Judy the Beauty in third. The opening quarter went in :22.19 with the half in :44.19. As they rounded the far turn Teddy’s Promise took over briefly but Groupie Doll and jockey Rajiv Maragh loomed up on the outside and quickly seized control, leading the pack into the homestretch with a one length lead. As the champion forged to the front Judy the Beauty was switched to the outside and began to close with a vengeance as Dance Card came rushing from the back. With the crowd on its feet Groupie Doll came under frantic urging by Maragh, but with each and every stride Judy the Beauty ate into her lead. With her legacy hanging in the balance Groupie Doll surged under the wire with just ½ a length to spare, the undeniable best, her champion’s heart on full display.
Judy the Beauty was gallant in defeat and loses nothing with this runner-up effort. She defeated Groupie Doll in their last start by 1 ¾ lengths, but today was all Groupie Doll. She’s had a rougher year than expected, finishing third in the Gardenia Stakes (gr.3) in her 2013 debut in August, but after setting a track record in the Presque Isle Downs Masters Stakes (Gr.2) everyone seemed to think the old Groupie Doll had returned. Her seemingly easy defeat at the hands of Judy the Beauty in the Thoroughbred Club Of America Stakes (Gr. 2) one month later again threw that noting into doubt. When it counted most Groupie Doll showed up. The Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint is her last race before being sold this year at auction, but I think the champ made sure she went out with a pretty resounding bang.


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 Meet Brian Appleton 

Thoroughbred Horse Racing is my passion.  It started when at the age of 9 I found a book called Come On Seabiscuit by Ralf Moody on my Mother’s shelf.  Reading that book was one of the most exciting things I ever did as a kid. I read that book so many times that I had entire chapters committed to memory and the dust jacket worn and ripped beyond recognition from so much use. From that point on I was hopelessly addicted, reading every book on horse racing I could get my hands on, especially racehorse biographies. In 2009 I began my own blog called Rail Runner on wordpress and have continued to blog there to this day.

Curlin is probably my favorite racehorse of all time. Being able to attend six of his races will always be one of the highlights of my life. Whenever I need to re-find some inspiration in my life all I need to do is watch one of his incredible victories and relive the memories. Rachel Alexandra ranks right up there too. As any horse racing fan will tell you it’s almost impossible to choose just one favorite and I am no exception. Phar Lap and Citation are another two of my all time favorites and the list could go on and on.

I was homeschooled my entire life by my parents and graduated High School in 2006 at the age of 17.  Currently I am completing my Marketing degree with the hopes of entering the Thoroughbred Horse Racing field as a writer/journalist , or in the marketing/advertising/promotions side of the industry.

It is my dream to someday become a thoroughbred racehorse owner and win major races across the United States. Who wouldn't want that, right?  For about 1 ½ years I was part owner in a racehorse, Lord Greystoke raced, and owned by Hibiscus Stables. I was able to attend one of his races at Belmont Park on Kentucky Derby day, May 2, 2009 and it was an incredible experience. While Lord Greystoke finished 7th in the race, being able to stand in an owner’s box not 30 feet away from Penny Chenery’s owner’s box was one of the most amazing feelings in the world.

Later in the year Lord Greystoke was finally able to break through with a 4 ½ length win which made me feel like one of the world’s most accomplished thoroughbred owners and further fueled my appetite. I think it would be rally neat to win the Appleton Stakes (Gr.3) at Gulfstream Park, even though I'm generally a bigger fan of dirt racing I can't help but think it would be neat for me to win a race with the same name as my last name.

That’s me in a nutshell, just a very passionate, driven young guy that wants to be a part of this amazing sport and share the adventure with other fans.

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