Bankit Returns in $125K NYSSS Thunder Rumble

December 1, 2022

Bankit wins the Evan Shipman Handicap Aug. 12 at Saratoga (Janet Garaguso)

By Keith McCalmont – NYRA Press Office

OZONE PARK, N.Y.— Winchell Thoroughbreds and Willis Horton Racing’s multiple graded-stakes placed Bankit will face two other reigning New York-bred Champions in Sunday’s $125,000 NYSSS Thunder Rumble, a seven-furlong sprint for eligible New York-sired 3-year-olds and upward, at Aqueduct Racetrack.

Trained by Hall of Famer Steve Asmussen, the 6-year-old Central Banker bay boasts a record of 35-7-11-5 for purse earnings of $1,189,655. The versatile horse has won at distances ranging from 5 1/2-furlongs to nine furlongs while posting wins at five different tracks.

He was named the New York-bred Champion Older Dirt Male last year for a campaign that included wins in the John B. Campbell at Laurel Park and a 13 1/4-length romp over fellow state-breds in the Commentator at Belmont Park.

“His talent and Steve’s training ability to keep him on form as long as he has been and to keep him as sound as he is has made him a great asset to have,” said David Fiske, racing manager for Winchell Thoroughbreds. “His biggest strength at this point is his soundness. He’s able to train consistently. Just the fact that he’s as sound as he is and competes as well as he does is a huge asset.”

Bankit launched his 6-year-old season in February with a sixth-place finish in the Group 2 Godolphin Mile at Meydan before two starts against state-breds at Saratoga Race Course, including a nose win in the Evan Shipman Handicap and a distant second to returning rival Somelikeithotbrown in the off-the-turf West Point presented by Trustco Bank on August 26 over a muddy and sealed main track.

Fiske said that Bankit, who returns from a three-month layoff, will remain in training and in search of future stakes success at both Aqueduct and Oaklawn Park where he finished a close second in the 2020 Grade 3 Razorback Handicap.

“He’s been incredibly consistent and professional. I suspect he’s in with a good chance. He’s still one of the better New York-bred older horses, so we’ll see what he can do,” Fiske said. “I don’t know if he’ll stay in New York the entire winter. On occasion, we have taken him to Oaklawn. We’ll just have to see. He’s competitive in open company and he likes the surface down there.”

Bred in the Empire State by Hidden Brook Farm and Blue Devil Racing, Bankit will exit the outermost post 8 under Jose Lezcano.

Somelikeithotbrown captures the West Point Aug. 26 at Saratoga (NYRA/Coglianese)

Skychai Racing and David Koenig’s multiple graded-stakes winning millionaire Somelikeithotbrown [post 1, Jose Ortiz] is the reigning New York-bred Champion Turf Male.

Trained by Mike Maker, the 6-year-old Big Brown bay sports a ledger of 29-10-6-4 for purse earnings in excess of $1.6 million led by graded success in the 2019 Grade 3 Jeff Ruby Steaks over the Turfway synthetic; and turf scores in the 2020 Grade 2 Bernard Baruch Handicap at the Spa; the 2021 Grade 2 Dinner Party at Pimlico; and the Grade 3 Mint Million two starts back on September 10 at Kentucky Downs.

Somelikeithotbrown, who enters his first start at the Big A from an off-the-board effort in the Grade 1 Turf Mile on October 8 at Keeneland, posted his lone career dirt score in the aforementioned West Point.

Bred in New York by Hot Pink Stables and Sand Dollar Stables, Somelikeithotbrown is out of the Tapit mare Marilyn Monroan.

My Boy Tate [post 5, Manny Franco], trained, bred and co-owned by Michelle Nevin with Little Red Feather Racing, is the reigning New York-bred Champion Sprinter.

The 8-year-old Boys At Tosconova gelding earned state-bred honors last year on the back of a three-win campaign that included scores here in the six-furlong Hollie Hughes and the one-mile Haynesfield. My Boy Tate was disqualified from victory and placed fourth in his seasonal debut here in the seven-furlong Say Florida Sandy in January. He has finished no worse than fifth in five state-bred starts since, including a two-length win last out in the 6 1/2-furong Hudson on October 30 at Belmont at the Big A.

A veteran of 35 starts, My Boy Tate, who won this event in 2019, has posted 8 of his 11 career wins at the Big A.

Cypress Creek Equine and Arnold Bennewith’s Dreamer’s Disease [post 4, Kendrick Carmouche] enters from a gate-to-wire score in the Delta Mile on November 5 at Delta Downs for trainer Ricky Courville.

The 4-year-old Laoban colt, bred in Kentucky by Southern Equine Stables, will make his first start at the Big A since December 2020 when seventh in the NYSSS Great White Way.

Dreamer’s Disease, who owns a record of 17-3-2-0 for purse earnings of $222,955, boasts wins on turf and dirt and will likely be part of the pace presence in Sunday’s test under Kendrick Carmouche.

Rounding out the field are multiple stakes-winner Ocala Dream [post 2, Javier Castellano], who adds blinkers; Chowda [post 7, Dylan Davis], whose full-brother Lobsta won this event last year; three-time winner Neuro [post 6, Eric Cancel]; and the maiden Cicciobello [post 3, Jose Gomez].

The Thunder Rumble is slated as Race 8 on Sunday’s nine-race card, which also features the $125,000 NYSSS Staten Island in Race 7. First post is 12:20 p.m. Eastern

America’s Day at the Races will present live coverage and analysis of the Aqueduct fall meet on the networks of FOX Sports. For the broadcast schedule and channel finder, visit

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