The Chosen Vron Scores 17th Stakes Win in Thor’s Echo

May 25, 2024

The Chosen Vron asserts his dominance once again in the Thor’s Echo (Ernie Belmonte/Past The Wire)

Santa Anita Press Box

ARCADIA, Calif.— It’s now 17 stakes wins and counting for The Chosen Vron after rolling to another comfortable victory in the $100,000 Thor’s Echo Stakes for California-breds going six furlongs Saturday at Santa Anita.

Breaking from the rail under regular rider Hector Berrios aboard, The Chosen Vron (1-9) tracked pacesetter Sawasdee (17-1) in second before ranging up to the leader on the outside near the three-sixteenths pole and then kicking clear to score by 2 ¼ lengths.

“That was exactly the same as our practice run,” Berrios said. “Taking the inside post bothered me because I wanted to go outside. But he settled well. I thought he felt comfortable. He made everything easy. I wasn’t stressed at all. He’s a nice horse.”

Trained and co-owned by Eric Kruljac, The Chosen Vron was timed in 1:09.37 on a fast track. Sawasdee, ridden by Diego Herrera in his stakes debut for trainer Craig Dollase, held second by 3 ¼ lengths over second-choice Moose Mitchell (10-1) and jockey Umberto Rispoli.

“He is a cool horse,” Kruljac said of The Chosen Vron. “I’m really truly speechless when you think about the whole three years of racing, what he has been through and what he has done.”

Sawasdee was returning to dirt after four straight starts on either turf or synthetic.

“He ran well,” Dollase said of Sawasdee. “It was the perfect run and he really improved. We’ll see down the road.”

Added Herrera of the runner-up: “I rode him a month ago and he was really green and never relaxed. Craig took the blinkers off and put him on the dirt. He’s come a long way since I last rode him.”

Fractions for the race were 22.51, 45.27 and 57.36.

Yet another trip to the winner’s circle for The Chosen Vron (Ernie Belmonte/Past The Wire)

Following the scratch of Big City Lights, who was expected to be The Chosen Vron’s chief rival, there was no show wagering. The Chosen Vron returned $2.10 and $2.10. Sawasdee paid $3.80 for place.

The Chosen Vron is now 23: 18-1-2 with the $60,000 winner’s share pushing his earnings $1,419,678. Kruljac owns The Chosen Vron in partnership with Sondereker Racing, Robert S. Fetkin and Richard Thornburgh.

The Chosen Vron is a 6-year-old gelding by Vronsky out of the Tiz Wonderful mare Tiz Molly. He was bred by Tiz Molly Partners.

In two previous starts this year, both at Santa Anita, The Chosen Vron won the GIII San Carlos going seven furlongs March 16 and the Kona Gold at 6 ½ furlongs April 27. He has now won 13 of his last 14 starts with the lone defeat being a fifth-place finish in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint Nov. 4 at Santa Anita.

The Thor’s Echo is one of five stakes on California Gold Rush Day at Santa Anita.

“For a unique and real perspective on horse racing, I read Jonathan Stettin’s column Past the Wire.” Bob Baffert, Multiple Triple Crown winner, Eclipse Award winner, Hall of Fame Champion Trainer

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