Pimlico Day 14: CA-bred California Chrome has roots in Maryland

Pimlico Day 14: CA-bred California Chrome has roots in Maryland
Photo: Tony Leonard

California Chrome, the likely favorite for the 2014 Kentucky Derby, is a CA-bred. In fact, he’s never set hoof outside of the Golden State, as all ten (10) of his races have come at either Santa Anita, Del Mar or the late, great Hollywood Park.

But his bloodlines are far from being Californian. His sire Lucky Pulpit was bred in Kentucky, as was his grandsire Pulpit who was bred at the legendary Claiborne Farm. The latter won the Blue Grass Stakes in 1997 and followed that up with a 4th place finish in the Kentucky Derby.

California Chrome’s mom (dam), Love the Chase was bred in Maryland by the Bowman & Higgins Stable, but made her way to northern California, racing her entire, short career at Golden Gate Fields. A winner of just one of six lifetime races, her maiden win came in an $8,000 Maiden Claimer, after which Martin Perry and Steve Coburn privately purchased her for $8,000.

As they looked at Love the Chase one more time before the purchase, the groom joked, “Whoever buys this mare sure is a dumb ass,” Steve recalled. “Well, we’re the Dumb Ass Partners who bought her.”

Perry and Coburn raced her twice, both times she finished dead last. But it was discovered that she had an entrapped epiglottis, a condition that cut off her air supply while running, so she was retired. But her bloodlines are exceptional as her grandfather, Mr. Prospector can be found in the majority of Derby winners over the past quarter century. Her sire Not For Love (pictured above) has dominated the Maryland Million over the last decade and is the all-time leading sire in Maryland Million history. Not For Love (above) is the sire of the winners of five Maryland Million Classics (1 1/8 mile race) and stands at Northview Stallion Station in Chesapeake City, MD.

Maryland can be proud IF California Chrome can win the Kentucky Derby, then visit the Free State, birth place of his mom to try to win the second jewel of the Triple Crown in the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, MD.

Recapping previous posted selections from Thursday, April 24th at Pimlico, had just 4 winners from 9 races, (4 Top Selection; payoffs in BOLD) having $2 WIN pay-offs of $5.00 (1st race), $7.00 (3rd), $13.60 (4th) and $8.80 (7th).

The BEST BET of the Day (19: 4-6-5) No Brakes (4th race: 4-1 M/L; 5-1 PT) sluggish from the gate, saved ground off the early pace, gained momentum when put to a hustling ride mid turn, angled four to five wide into the stretch, advanced between rivals in mid-stretch, closed determinedly under strong left handed pressure while on his left lead and forged ahead to get the lead in the final yards to win by a ½ length and return $13.60 to WIN, $5.60 to PLACE and $3.60 to SHOW.

The LONGSHOT PICK (19: 5-5-0) Patriot Dream (8th race: 15-1 M/L; 15-1 PT) broke inward, regrouped and was sent up between foes to take over after a furlong, set the pace in the two path, took outside pressure from the three-eighths pole to the quarter pole and tired, finishing 8th.

FYI – the BEST BET of the Day selection will never be a M/L favorite and the LONGSHOT PICK will simply be the runner having the highest M/L odds among my top picks for an entire card.

PLEASE NOTE: Statistics provided for the BEST BET and LONGSHOT PICK in parentheses represent the Number of Picks: Wins-Places-Shows. For example, the BEST BET (10: 1-2-3) was picked 10 times resulting in 1 winner, 2 places and 3 shows. In the past, I would reset these numbers at the start of each meet. For 2014, I reset these numbers on Jan. 1st in order to chart results on a yearly basis.

Selections for Saturday, Apr. 26th at Pimlico Race Course are posted below and may be updated on race day morning after scratches are announced at approximately 10:00am EDT.

1st race – $5,000 Starter Allowance for 4 y.o. and up – 6 furlongs

#1 – Regal Warrior (7-5)

#6 – Singing My Way (1-1)

#7 – Jade’s Prince (12-1)

2nd race – $8,000 Maiden Claiming for F&M 3 y.o. and up – 1 1/16 miles

#2 – Purple Paisley (5-1)

#1 – Scienziato (4-5)

#3 – Femme de Joie (3-1)

3rd race – $5,000 Claiming for F&M 3 y.o. and up – 1 1/16 miles

#10 – Sister Sharon (3-1)

#6 – Go the Distance (8-1)

#5 – Political Miss (5-2)

4th race – $40,000 Optional Claiming for 3 y.o. – 6 furlongs

#2 – Tiger Tank (3-1) *** BEST BET ***

#5 – Tensas Carlos (15-1)

#4 – Wonderfella (3-5)

10 cent Jackpot Pick-5 Carryover: $55,137

5th race – $40,000 Maiden Special Weight for 3 y.o. and up – 1 1/16 miles on TURF

#3 – Forbidden Drive (9-2)

#1 – Acquant (3-1)

#2 – Milwaukee Woman (8-1)

6th race – $42,000 Allowance for 3 y.o. and up – 1 1/16 miles

#7 – Tooth n Claw (9-2)

#3 – Sparkling Jewel (6-1)

#8 – Handsome Harley (20-1)

7th race – $25,000 Claiming N2L for F&M 3 y.o. and up – 1 1/16 miles on TURF

#2 – Exchange Student (5-1)  $$$ LONGSHOT PLAY $$$

#8 – Mindfulness (10-1)

#11 – Glittering (9-2)

8th race – $75,000 Geisha Stakes for MD-bred F&M 3 y.o. and up – 1 1/16 miles

#5 – Addison Run (9-5)

#2 – Celtic Kate (3-1)

#4 – C C Gold (9-2)

9th race – $42,000 Allowance for 3 y.o. and up – 5 furlongs on TURF

#6 – In Mid Heir (8-5)

#1 – Hymn Note (12-1)

#2 – La Grey Zuliana (9-5)

10th race – $5,000 Claiming for F&M 3 y.o. and up – 6 furlongs

#10 – Bert B Don (9-2)

#6 – Bowman’s Boy (3-1)

#2 – Show Some Lovin (5-2)


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                Meet Gary Quill

  I am the most passionate person on the planet when it comes to thoroughbred horse racing! One sunny summer day in 1964 at Timonium Race Track is where my Dad and mentor introduced me to “The Sport of Kings”. Since that day, I have had the pleasure to visit over 40 different tracks across North America. Though an IT professional by trade, I’ve had a part-time gig with the Maryland Jockey Club since 1988.

here are thousands of rail-birds who claim to be great handicappers. Well, I don’t claim to be the best… just the most passionate and one that won’t tout “chalk”. Like a savvy stock broker, I look for value and often find it. Unlike the talking heads on horse racing television networks and the dozens of websites featuring handicapper’s opinions, I’m ACCOUNTABLE. That is, good or bad, you’ll always know how my previously posted picks performed along with a running record of my BEST BET and LONGSHOT Play of the Day selections for Maryland tracks (Laurel and Pimlico) at TheRacingBiz, see "The GQ Approach".

   In addition to focusing on the Maryland thoroughbred racing circuit, each year I follow the Derby Trail and post “GQ’s Derby Double Dozen” in early February. 

   My personal mission is to rejuvenate interest in thoroughbred horse racing. Being able to share my energy, thoughts and opinions on this sport via HRN will certainly help the cause.


"I lost $2 at Santa Anita and I've spent $3 million trying to get it back." - Mickey Rooney

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