Connie Swingle winning the Unzip Me at Santa Anita Oct. 1. Benoit Photo
Air Force Red prominent In $80,000 Lure
ARCADIA, Calif.—Unbeaten in three tries down Santa Anita’s unique hillside turf course, Nick Alexander’s homebred Connie Swingle seeks her third consecutive win and her second straight hillside turf stakes victory as she heads a field of nine fillies and mares aged three and up in Saturday’s $100,000 Senator Ken Maddy Stakes at about 6 ½ furlongs down the hill.
The Senator Ken Maddy honors the late California state senator who represented California’s Central Valley for nearly 30 years and was a tremendous supporter of Thoroughbred racing throughout his career in public office.
A gutty neck winner versus sophomore fillies in open company in the ungraded Unzip Me Stakes down the hill Oct. 1, Connie Swingle, a 3-year-old California-bred filly by Grazen out of the Sky Mesa mare Sky Marni, handled older competition going five furlongs on turf at Del Mar two starts back on Sept. 2, drawing clear by a half length under regular rider Kyle Frey
Race Is Named In Honor Of State Senator Who Was An Enthusiastic Supporter Of Racing
Trained by Phil D’Amato, Connie Swingle, a two-time stakes winner, will face open company for the third time in a row on Saturday. Remarkably consistent, she’s been lights-out in two hillside turf tries, taking an open first condition allowance by 2 ¾ lengths on May 7 and a classified allowance down the hill on June 11 by 5 ½ lengths.
A virtual gate to wire winner of both of her hillside starts, “Connie,” who is 9-6-2-1 overall, will likely be winging on the front end as she tries to enhance her bankroll of $411,564.
A solid 1 ½ length allowance winner in her only hillside try on Sept. 30, Freedom Flyer, a 4-year-old Kentucky-bred daughter of Constitution out of the Carson City mare Rebuke, looms dangerous with Juan Hernandez back aboard for Leonard Powell.
Owned by Marsha Naify, Freedom Flyer, who is 18-3-5-3 overall, seeks her first stakes win.
|The Senator Ken Maddy|
|Race 9 of 10 post time 5 p.m. PT|
|1. Royal Address Joe Bravo Leonard Powell 4-1|
|2. Stella Noir Ryan Curatolo Jonathan Wong 6-1|
|3. She’s So Nice Ricardo Gonzalez Phil D’Amato 9/5|
|4. Act of Serendipity Edgar Payeras Genaro Vallejo 50-1|
|5. Freedom Flyer Juan Hernandez Librado Barocio 30-1|
|6. Amy C Umberto Rispoli Neil Drysdale 15-1|
|7. Lexington Honor Ramon Vazquez Phil D’Amato 8-1|
|8. Connie Swingle Kyle Frey Keith Desourmeaux 15-1|
|9. Lady Jane Hector Berrios Phil D’Amato 3-1|
|10. Aqua Seafoam Shame Eduardo Maldonado George Papaprodromou 12-1|
Air Force Red a Standout In $80,000 Lure
In what appears to be a wide-open affair for 3-year-olds and up at one mile on turf, the Leonard Powell-trained Air Force Red figures prominently among a field of six in Saturday’s $80,000 Lure Stakes, which is restricted to horses which have not won a stakes of $55,0000 at one mile or over other than statebred in 2022.
With three wins from eight starts this year, Air Force Red, winless in his last three tries, comes off a fifth-place finish going about 6 ½ furlongs down the hillside turf in the Grade II Eddie D Stakes Oct. 1. Fourth, beaten 3 ½ lengths by rising star Hong Kong Harry two back in the Grade II Del Mar Mile (turf), Air Force Red will be reunited with Juan Hernandez, who rationed his considerable speed to a half-length allowance win coming down the hill four starts back on June 12.
With Hernandez apparently taking off California-bred Carmelita’s Man, with whom he had won three consecutive races, Air Force Red could garner some additional pari-mutuel notice. Owned by Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners and Holly Golightly, Air Force Red, a 4-year-old ridgling by Air Force Blue out of the Mizzen Mast mare Mesana, is winless in two tries at one mile on turf, but all three of his lifetime wins have come over the Santa Anita lawn.
Although winless in six tries at one mile on turf, Phil D’Amato’s Gregorian Chant is a well accomplished sort who may go favored on Saturday. Third, beaten two lengths while finishing three quarters of a length in front of Air Force Red as the 2-1 favorite in the Oct. 1 Eddie D, this 6-year-old English-bred gelding has five wins from 12 tries over the Santa Anita turf, including a victory in the Grade III San Simeon at six furlongs out of the turf chute in March, 2021.
Owned by Old Bones Racing Stable, LLC and Slam Dunk Racing, Gregorian Chant, winless in his last four starts, will be ridden for the third time in a row by Umberto Rispoli. With an overall mark of 23-7-1-5, he has earnings of $428,623.
|The $80,000 Lure Stakes|
|Race 1 of 10 Post time is 1 p.m. PT|
|1. Carmelita’s Man Mike Smith Dean Pederson 3-1|
|2. Prince Abama Hector Berrios Phil D’Amato 5/2|
|3. Gregorian Chant Umberto Rispoli Phil D’Amato 2-1|
|4. Lambeau Victor Espinoza John Shirreffs 15-1|
|5. Air Force Red Juan Hernandez Leonard Powell 5/2|
|6. Mr. Impossible Joe Bravo Simon Callaghan 12-1|
Santa Anita Press Release