Diamond Oops: A Fan and Family Favorite

July 2, 2021

Diamond Oops: A Fan and Family Favorite  
Joseph: Chance It Will Always Have a ‘Special Place’
Saturday’s Rainbow 6 Jackpot Pool Guaranteed at $100,000

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL  Diamond Oops has become a fan favorite at Gulfstream Park, where he has won five stakes between his numerous and productive trips out of town. The multiple graded stakes-winning millionaire also holds a special place in the hearts of trainer Patrick Biancone and his family, particularly his daughter and assistant, Andie.

“He’s the best friend of my daughter. They go everywhere together. She rides him every day,” Biancone said. “We have a great time with that horse. I trained the mother, the grandfather, the grandmother – I trained the whole family.”  

A Grade 2 winner on turf and dirt who is also Grade 1 stakes-placed on both surfaces, the ever-versatile Diamond Oops will test his dirt sprinting skills Saturday in $200,000 Smile Sprint Invitational (G3) at Gulfstream Park.

The Smile, a six-furlong stakes for 3-year-olds and up, will be featured on Saturday’s 12-race program that will be headlined by the $350,000 Princess Rooney (G2), a seven-furlong ‘Win and You’re In’ Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series event for fillies and mares.

“Diamond Oops is versatile, but you can see by his numbers that he’s a much better horse on the dirt than he is on the turf,” Biancone said.

The 6-year-old son of Lookin At Lucky captured the 2019 Smile Sprint before finishing second back-to-back in the six-furlong Vanderbilt (G1) over Saratoga’s main track and the Shadwell Turf Mile (G1) at Keeneland.

The tough-as-nails Kentucky-bred launched his 2020 campaign with a very respectable fourth-place finish in the Pegasus World Cup Invitational (G1) while running outside his comfort zone in the two-turn 1 1/8-mile event. He went on to win the 5 ½-furlong Turf Sprint (G2) at Churchill Downs and the six-furlong Phoenix (G2) over Keeneland’s main track.  

Diamond Oops finished fourth in the April 30 Turf Sprint at Churchill in his 2021 debut before capturing a six-furlong overnight handicap at Gulfstream June 5.

“He ran a really good race on the turf at Churchill. He got stuck on the rail but finished very strongly to be fourth,” Biancone said. “The prep race for this race, I think, was a very good race.”

Biancone, who owns Diamonds Oops with Diamond 100 Racing Club LLC, Amy Dunne and D P Racing LLC, said the Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1) at Del Mar is the ultimate goal.

Joseph: Chance It Will Always Have a ‘Special Place’

Trainer Saffie Joseph Jr. has skyrocketed onto the national thoroughbred scene in the past couple of years, but Gulfstream’s leading trainer during the current Spring/Summer Meet isn’t about to forget Chance It, one of his first stakes performers who helped to fuel his rapid rise to prominence.

“I love him. He definitely has a special place,” said Joseph, who will saddle Chance It for a start in Saturday’s $200,000 Smile Sprint Invitational (G3) at Gulfstream. “I play with him all the time. Just his personality, there’s something you love about him. He’s not the most talented horse I’ve had. There is that special feeling for him, for sure.”

Chance It was the hero of the 2019 Florida Sire Stakes Series, winning the $100,000 Dr. Fager and the $400,000 In Reality, before going on to win the Mucho Macho Man in his 3-year-old debut. The son of Currency Swap was sidelined for 14 months with a soft-tissue issue following a fifth-place finish in the Tampa Bay Derby (G2).

Shooting Star Thoroughbreds LLC’s 4-year-old Florida-bred returned to action in a stakes-quality optional claiming allowance May 23 at Gulfstream, finishing second, beaten by less than a length by Double Crown.

“You always want to win if you can, but it was a long road to get him back. To see him show up and run back to form was satisfying,” Joseph said. “Since the race, he’s move forward a lot, training-wise. He’s training as good as he ever trained. If all goes well, I think he’s going to run a big race. He’s obviously has to run a lifetime top to win it, but we feel like he’s sitting on a big race.”

His time away from the races was beneficial for the unpredictable colt, mentally as well as physically.

“Mentally, he’s relaxed more. Before, he used to go on his hind legs a lot. It would scare us how high he would go,” Joseph said. “Just getting older, he’s kind of knocked off that behavior. Very rarely will he do it now. Before, he used to do it frequently and scare you. Now, he’s much more focused and relaxed.”

Joseph will also saddle e Five Racing Thoroughbreds’ Sound Machine for a start in the $350,000 Princess Rooney Invitational (G2) on Saturday’s Summit of Speed program at Gulfstream.

The 4-year-old daughter of Into Mischief, who captured the Musical Romance against Florida-bred competition last time out, is rated as a 12-1 long shot for the seven-furlong sprint for fillies and mares, which is a ‘Win and You’re In’ Breeders’ Cup Challenge Series event.

“I just feel we’ve never gotten the best out of her. There’s more than we’ve seen. We’ve tweaked a couple of things. It’s like we’re just missing something,” Joseph said. “Last time she won, but that kind of race isn’t going to win this kind of race. She’s going to have to step up her game again. I feel like he has this kind of race in her, but we haven’t seen it yet.”

Saturday’s Rainbow 6 Jackpot Pool Guaranteed at $100,000

The 20-cent Rainbow 6 jackpot pool will be guaranteed at $100,000 Saturday at Gulfstream Park.

The popular multi-race wager has gone unsolved for one racing day following last Wednesday’s mandatory payout.  

The jackpot pool is only paid out when there is a single unique ticket sold with all six winners. On days when there is no unique ticket, 70 percent of that day’s pool goes back to those bettors holding tickets with the most winners, while 30 percent is carried over to the jackpot pool.

Saturday’s Rainbow 6 sequence will span Races 7-12, including the $200,000 Smile Sprint Invitational (G3) in Race 10 and the $350,000 Princess Rooney Invitational (G2) in Race 11.

Diamond Oops is the 5-2 morning-line favorite for the six-furlong Smile, which drew a field of eight, including comebacking Chance It, razor-sharp Miles Ahead and three Kathy Ritvo-trained entrants, Double Crown, Frosted Grace and Ournationonparade.

Michael McCarthy-trained Ce Ce, a multiple Grade 1 winner, has shipped from Southern California to take on seven fillies and mares in the seven-furlong Princess Rooney. Juan Arriagada-trained Estilo Talentoso, who captured the Bed ‘o Roses (G3) at Belmont, was installed as the 5-2 morning-line favorite, ahead of Ce Ce, who is rated second at 3-1.

Gulfstream Park Press Release

Photo: Sound Machine the Musical Romance ( Ryan Thompson Photo)

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