SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y.— John Oxley and Breeze Easy’s Boppy O garnered a career-best 70 Beyer Speed Figure for his determined neck score in Wednesday’s Grade 3, $175,000 With Anticipation for juveniles traveling 1 1/16 miles on the lawn at Saratoga Race Course.
“He came back great and ate good last night,” said Shane Tripp, assistant to Hall of Fame trainer Mark Casse. “We’re real pleased with him.”
Boppy O made his turf debut in the With Anticipation and rebounded from a distant 10th-place finish in the Grade 3 Sanford over the Spa main track on July 16. He earned his second-lifetime win from three starts, adding to a debut maiden score by 1 1/2 lengths sprinting five furlongs in May at Gulfstream Park.
In the With Anticipation, Boppy O was piloted by Dylan Davis from just off the pace and stuck his head in front at the three-quarters call, digging in down the stretch under urging to hold off a late bid from Battle of Normandy and provide his sire, Bolt d’Oro, with his first graded winner. The win was also the first graded score at the Spa for Davis, who rode Our Flash Drive and Make Mischief to stakes victories for Casse this summer in the De La Rose and Yaddo, respectively.
Boppy O is a half-brother to the Casse-trained graded stakes winner Pappacap, who has earned three Grade 1 placings on dirt in addition to a victory in last year’s Grade 2 Best Pal. Boppy O is the second foal out of the Scat Daddy mare Pappascat to score a win on the turf.
“He didn’t run that good in the Sanford and then we worked him on the grass and he worked awfully good,” said Tripp. “I don’t think it was completely a shock. We’re really fortunate.”
Oxley, a longtime friend and client of Casse, said he was pleased the Hall of Famer recommended the colt at last year’s Keeneland September Yearling Sale where he was purchased for $190,000 by Oxley and Breeze Easy.
“We’ve been together 25 years and Mark picked him out,” said Oxley. “We bought him with Breeze Easy, 50/50. We were delighted to get him and Mark thought he was a very nice-looking yearling and well-bred. A half-brother to Pappacap. His half-brother was dirt, but he is by Bolt d’Oro, so he’s got some breeding for turf.”
The With Anticipation is one of more than a half-dozen graded victories at Saratoga for Oxley, who said each victory at the Spa is special.
“I remember many [wins here],” Oxley said. “We won the Spinaway here with Pretty City Dancer, a dead-heat by the way, and we won the Hopeful here with Sky Mesa, that was [in] 2002. They all come back. You remember the good ones. The losers I dismiss.”
NYRA Press Office
Photo: Boppy O wins the Grade 3 With Anticipation (Janet Garaguso)