HRN Original Blog:
Zipse At The Track

Runhappy: Another exciting winner for Super Saver



In one of the more interesting career debut performances you will ever see, the 16th winner for freshman sire, Super Saver, was unveiled yesterday at Turfway Park, and if yesterday’s ninth race at the Northern Kentucky oval was any indication, Runhappy would seem to be aptly named.

Coming in off a trio of bullet works, Runhappy was well bet to go to post as the 5-2 second choice in the 11-horse maiden special weight. He came out of the gate looking nothing like a potential star, though. After the awkward beginning, the bay juvenile colt was back in tenth, spotting the early leaders a double digit length head start. That sizable deficit would be short lived. Like a shot, Runhappy began picking off horses, and quickly took over. By the time the large field hit the far turn, he was clearly in front of the field. On a track not playing especially fast, Runhappy had gone from tenth place, to five lengths in front, in a sharp :45.08 half mile.

If the stumble out of the gate was not enough, the talented colt proceeded to add drama and demonstrate more of his racing immaturity. First he blew the turn for home, and then he, with rider Adrian Garcia in tow, ran erratically throughout the entire stretch. Through it all, Runhappy still hit the wire a romping winner by more than eight lengths over the runner-up, Worth the Gamble, and in racehorse final time of 1:17 flat for the 6 ½ furlongs. The big win margin, and the solid time would not seem to fit with all the things he did wrong in the race. Like I said, it was one of the more interesting career debut performances you will ever see.


What do you think? I didn’t oversell it a bit, did I?

Obviously, there’s a long road to hoe before he makes the big time, but the son of the 2010 Kentucky Derby winner, clearly has a good deal of talent under the hood.

Owned by furniture magnate Jim McIngvale, and trained by Laura Wohlers, Runhappy is out of the Broken Vow mare, Bella Jolie. A winner or 2-of-9 in claiming ranks, she like his sire, adds distance bloodlines to Runhappy’s pedigree profile. McIngvale snatched him out of the Keeneland September sale last year as a yearling for $200,000.

An early bird nomination for the Louisiana Derby, look for Runhappy to join the 2015 Kentucky Derby trail sooner, rather than later, in hopes of joining his sire as a winner on the first Saturday in May. 


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Meet Brian Zipse

Brian has been a passionate fan of horse racing his entire life. Taken to the races at a very young age, he has been lucky enough to see all the greats in person from Secretariat, Forego, and Ruffian through Rachel Alexandra, Zenyatta, American Pharoah and Justify. Before coming to the Nation, Brian displayed his love for the sport through the development of his horse racing website, which quickly became one of the most popular blogs in the game. His new racing partnership venture, Derby Day Racing, invites more fans to experience the thrill of racehorse ownership.

The Editor of Horse Racing Nation from 2010-2017, Brian authored a daily column as Zipse at the Track, created the popular racing show, HorseCenter and added his editorial flare to the overall content of the website. Now a Senior Writer for HRN, Brian continues to contribute his thoughts on racing, as well as hosting HorseCenter. A big supporter of thoroughbred aftercare, he serves as the President of The Exceller Fund.

Brian's work has also been published on several leading industry sites. He has consulted for leading contest site Derby Wars, is both a Hall of Fame and NTRA poll voter, and is a Vox Populi committee member. 

A horse owner and graduate of DePaul University, Brian lives just outside of Louisville with his wife Candice and daughter Kendra.

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