SARATOGA SPRINGS — Trainer Chad Brown’s domination of turf racing at Saratoga Race Course and throughout the U.S. is well-established.
But this is ridiculous.
Brown finished 1-2-3 with three horses in the Grade I Diana last Saturday, but at least Sistercharlie, Rushing Fall and Homerique had some competition from outside Brown’s barn.
He pulled off another Chad-fecta on Friday, but after four horses scratched from the Grade III Lake George, no other outcome was possible, since the remaining three were all trained by Brown.
For the record, Regal Glory won the Lake George for her second straight stakes win under Luis Saez, followed by Blowout and Dogtag, and, especially under the circumstances, Brown was pleased with how each of his horses ran.
“It’s never happened before, and it’ll probably never happen again, so it was definitely unusual, but we’re happy,” Brown told the New York Racing Association. “All three fillies seemed to run well, and Regal Glory just had a little more today.”
“Yeah, it was a little weird, but that’s alright. It’s still racing,” Saez said. “I knew the 7 [Blowout] was going to be the speed, so the first key was to break and try to be close.”
That’s what Saez did, sensing that Blowout, who had won on the front end last time out, was getting away with pretty slow early fractions in the Lake George.
She covered the first quarter-mile in 24.99 and the half-mile in 48.66.
Regal Glory settled in third down the backstretch, but stuck close to the pacesetter. When they got into the stretch, she moved to a short lead on the outside and was able to get to the wire a half-length ahead of Blowout (ridden by Jose Ortiz), with Dogtag (Javier Castellano) another length and three-quarters back.
“She has a big turn of foot in the stretch, so that’s why we tried to look on the first turn, and everything worked perfect,” said Saez, who rode Regal Glory to victory in the Pennsylvania Oaks at Parx on June 1. “That’s why I came out and tried to push them so they would move a little bit. Then when that happened, I was perfect in that spot.
“She always tries. Last time, that was an impressive win, and I really liked her today. I know I’m going to have [enough] horse in the stretch.”
“This time around, what I did was I told all the jockeys, ‘Look, just try to ride your own race and do the best you can to win. Outside of that, if you want to talk to your individual clients or representatives that are here today, please do so and draw up a plan,'” Brown told NYRA. “I thought that was the fairest way to do it, only because it was my horses in the race. As it turns out, I thought all three fillies ran pretty well.
“I thought these horses were so close. Maybe the odds were a little off, but these horses are so close, that’s why they were all in this race. I do my best to really treat the horses individually and give them the best chance to run in the races they’re supposed to run in individually, and these three horses really fit the Lake George well. That’s why they were here today.”
Saez comes into the weekend on a tear in stakes races, having won the feature the last three days. He was on Sky of Hook in the Rick Violette on Wednesday and My Italian Rabbi in the Stillwater on Thursday.
Saturday’s card at Saratoga was canceled due to a forecast of extreme heat and humidity, but Saez is scheduled to ride in five stakes on Haskell Day at Monmouth Park, including Maximum Security in the Haskell.
His only stakes horse on Saratoga’s Sunday card is Coach Rocks in the Shuvee, but she’s cross-entered in the Molly Pitcher on Haskell Day and will scratch from the Shuvee, according to West Point Thoroughbreds.
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