Tribalist ready to run in Eddie D
September 28, 2017 11:43am
Tribalist wins 2017 Green Flash Handicap
Photo: Benoit Photo

Tribalist doesn’t get to the races often, but when he does, he makes it count.

A six-year-old gelded son of the late Tribal Rule, Tribalist will be making only the seventh start of his career Friday when he runs in the Grade III, $100,000 Eddie D. Stakes for three-year-olds and up at about 6 ½ furlongs on turf.

Trained by Blake Heap and ridden by Victor Espinoza, Tribalist finished second by a head in his only previous start on the unique downhill course back on June 28, 2014.

Remarkably, he has had interminably long gaps of about one year each between three of his races, but has won his last four in a row despite trouble in almost every one.

“The first time he ran, he was knocked off stride leaving the gate and wound up hitting both tendons,” Heap explained. “Despite that, he ran third, but that’s why we had to stop on him all those times for so long, because the tendons would flare up.

“But honestly, he’s doing better now than he was at three. When he ran down the hill here it was the first out after a long layoff because of his tendons, and I could hardly train him for the race. That, plus he always seems to get in trouble.”

First race, Aug. 18, 2013: “Off bit slow, 4 wide lane;” second race, June 28, 2014, “four wide into lane, edged;” fifth race, July 30, 2015, “Broke thru gate, game;” and sixth start, Aug. 18, 2017, “steadied start, 3/8 & 5/16.”

“He has lots of ability,” Heap continued, “but he gets sawed off, breaks through the gate, something always seems to happen. Still, all that said, he can really run.”

The field for the Eddie D., the ninth of nine races: Prize Exhibit, Santiago Gonzalez, 10-1; Tribalist, Victor Espinoza, 4-1; California Diamond, Kent Desormeaux, 15-1; Om, Drayden Van Dyke, 8-5; Rocket Heat, Evin Roman, 8-1; Forever Juanito, Joe Talamo, 8-1; Guns Loaded, Rafael Bejarano, 6-1; Coastline, Flavien Prat, 12-1; Krsto Skye, Brice Blanc, 20-1; Zarqa Star, Martin Pedroza, 50-1; and Mr. Roary, Tyler Conner, 12-1.

Source: Santa Anita Park


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