Slider Slips Wide, Re-Rallies for Win in Speakeasy

October 7, 2023

Slider victorious in the Speakeasy (Ernie Belmonte/Past The Wire)

$1 Million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint Likely Next on Nov. 3 At Santa Anita

Mike Willman/Santa Anita Press Box

ARCADIA, Calif.— Although he drifted very wide turning for home, John Sadler’s Slider was all business from there to the wire, as re-took the lead from Irish-bred Dark Vintage to win going away by 1 ¼ lengths in Saturday’s $100,000 Speakeasy Stakes at Santa Anita.  On turf for the first time today in his third start, Slider got five furlongs over a firm surface in 55.96.

Breaking from post position two in a field of 10, Slider was immediately in control on the front end, but appeared to shy from something leaving the quarter pole, creating a huge opening at the rail for Dark Vintage, who took the lead by a length but was collared with about 60 yards to run.

A three-length maiden winner going 5 ½ furlongs on dirt at Del Mar on Sept. 9, Slider was heavily favored at 4-5 and paid $3.80, $2.80 and $2.20.

Owned by West Point Thoroughbreds, Hall Racing, LLC and Pearl Racing, Slider, a bay colt by Jimmy Creed out of the Congrats mare Days Like This, is likely headed now to the Grade I, $1 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint Nov. 3 at Santa Anita.

With the winner’s share of $60,000, he now has earnings of $125,600.

Ridden by Juan Hernandez, Dark Vintage was third heading to the quarter pole and nearly pulled off a considerable upset.  Off at 4-1 he paid $3.80 and $3.00.

April Vintage, one of two fillies in the lineup, rallied from off the pace to out-finish 100-1 shot Des Doigts by a neck and paid $5.40 to show while off at 15-1 with Antonio Fresu up.

Fractions on the race were 21.20 and 44.34.


A relieved Hector Berrios (Ernie Belmonte/Past The Wire)

Jockey Quotes

Hector Berrios, Slider, Winner: “He saw himself that’s why we drifted out so wide. When he felt the pressure coming from the other horse he returned inside, and he was able to win without any trouble. He grabbed the grass good no problem.”

Trainer Quotes

John Sadler, Slider, Winner: “We switched him to the grass today because we’re hoping to run in the (Grade I, $1 million) Juvenile Turf Sprint.  I think what happened there turning for home was a combination of being a little green and being on the turf.  I thought he was very impressive.  To stay collected the way he did and come back and get that horse, that was impressive.”

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