Looms Boldly comes out of the Damon Runyon a winner (Susie Raisher)
Eyeing Clover Targets ‘Midwest Derbies’ as Long Term Goal
NYRA Press Office
OZONE PARK, N.Y.— Ten Strike Racing’s Looms Boldly made his stakes debut a triumphant one when taking on fellow New York-breds in Sunday’s $100,000 Damon Runyon at Aqueduct Racetrack. The sophomore son of Goldencents could return to racing action as early as next month according to Ten Strike co-owner Marshall Gramm.
Looms Boldly, trained by Brad Cox, was a pacesetting second-out winner in November at the Big A over next-out stakes placed Lifetime of Chance. He entered the six-furlong Damon Runyon off a distant third to returning rival What’s Up Bro in a February 20 state-bred allowance optional claimer going the same distance. He redeemed himself when returning to frontrunning tactics and fended off a late rally from graded-stakes placed Andiamo a Firenze to win the Damon Runyon by a half-length under Manny Franco.
Gramm, who owns and operates Ten Strike Racing with Clay Sanders, said Looms Boldly is under consideration for a pair of spots at Belmont Park in either the open company $150,000 Gold Fever on May 12 going six furlongs or the seven-furlong $125,000 Mike Lee against New York-breds on May 29.
“We haven’t discussed with Brad yet. We wanted to see how he comes out of the race, but the Mike Lee looks like a spot. It’s two months in between starts and we may try to find a sooner spot,” Gramm said. “If not a New York-bred race, there’s some regional six-furlong races we could run him in. He’s still eligible for the open a-other-than and I don’t know that we run him against olders in the two-other-than yet. We may look for something in April. Our options are good when you break your maiden and win a stake with an early 3-year-old. It really depends on how he’s training and what Brad thinks.”
Gramm said fitness was a likely factor in earning the victory on Sunday.
“He was just more fit going into the race,” Gramm said. “He’s a horse that takes a lot of training. He gets fat really quickly. When he came out of his maiden win in November, we gave him a little extra time and he came into that first race a little short. He was certainly ready for this spot. He looked a little bit loose once there was the scratch of the other speed and got up there and held on. We were extremely pleased and excited.”
A New York homebred, Looms Boldly is out of the Forestry mare See the Forest, who also produced Critical Value – a stakes-winner going both seven furlongs and one mile – as well as 10-year-old routing veteran Grit’n’grind.
Gramm said it’s too early to tell where the distance ceiling lies for Looms Boldly.
“He’s sort of blocky and built like a sprinter. The dam has thrown some sprinters and has a 10-year-old in Pennsylvania that’s a closing router,” Gramm said. “It’s a little undetermined in terms of the pedigree, but he’s likely to stick with sprints. There’s some New York-bred sprints that fit him nicely.”
The Cox-trained Eyeing Clover, owned by Ten Strike Racing in partnership with Michael E. Kisber and Colin Reed, finished fourth in the Grade 3 Gotham on March 4 as the lukewarm favorite. The sophomore son of Lookin At Lucky was sitting close to a swift pace down the backstretch and finished fourth beaten nine lengths by the victorious Raise Cain.
Eyeing Clover has since worked once at Churchill Training, going a half-mile in 49.40 seconds on March 18. Gramm said he will make his next start in the $200,000 Hot Springs on April 1 at Oaklawn Park with long-term goals including the $300,000 Texas Derby on May 29 at Lone Star Park, the $250,000 Iowa Derby on July 8 at Prairie Meadows, and the Grade 3, $300,000 Indiana Derby on July 8 at Horseshoe Indianapolis.
“I’m optimistic about his ability to get a distance of ground because the Gotham had a very fast pace that he was involved in and I thought he ran the second best of all the horses that were in the race,” Gramm commented. “We’re going to try him on the Arkansas Derby undercard in the Hot Springs. It’s a two-turn mile with a short stretch. Well go from there and hope this summer he can be an Iowa Derby, Indiana Derby, West Virginia Derby, Texas Derby kind of horse. It really just depends on how he handles a distance of ground.”
Bred by Mike Abraham, Eyeing Clover is out of the Forest Wildcat mare Floral Park, making him a half-brother to graded stakes winning female sprinter Heavenhasmynikki.
Ten Strike Racing’s New York-bred sophomore filly Majestic Return romped to a 6 1/2-length graduation at second asking on March 11 for trainer Michelle Giangiulio.
Majestic Return, bred in the Empire State by Marshall Gramm, Raymond Sauer and Mike Pietrangelo, was in control throughout and registered a 68 Beyer Speed Figure for the win.
Although turf will likely be in the daughter of Long On Value’s future, Gramm expressed desire to stick to dirt for the time being and even said he had considered her for today’s $100,000 East View.
“She’s got turf breeding and looks like a turf horse and has the quick turn of foot. Long On Value was a Grade 1 winner on turf that we campaigned toward the end of his career,” Gramm said. “We actually looked at the East View for her, but it was coming back on too short of rest. I think she would have fit in there, but it was only two weeks and we didn’t want to rush her. We may look for a state-bred a-other-than. Michelle liked her before her first start, and that first start was a learning experience. We think she’s got a big future and maybe in the long run she’ll run on turf, but we’ll probably spend a lot of the rest of the year on dirt.”
Majestic Return is out of the Majesticperfection mare Majestic Mist. She comes from the same extended family as English Affair, a graded stakes winner on grass, as well as turf graded stakes-placed Seruni.