Tyler’s Tribe in a work at Keeneland Oct. 22, 2022. (Coady Photography)
Oaklawn Barn Notes by Robert Yates
HOT SPRINGS, Ark.—Iowa-bred sensation Tyler’s Tribe is scheduled to make his 3-year-old and two-turn debut in Thursday’s seventh race, a $103,000 entry-level allowance at 1 mile.
Tyler’s Tribe, co-owned and trained by Tim Martin of Hot Springs, hasn’t started since finishing third in the $150,000 Advent Stakes for 2-year-olds at 5 ½ furlongs Dec. 9 at Oaklawn.
Martin said Tyler’s Tribe bled through the anti-bleeder medication Lasix during the race, which led to a break of approximately one month at the trainer’s nearby farm in Royal. The gelding returned to Oaklawn in early February and has four published workouts in advance of his comeback, the last a 5-furlong bullet (:59.40) March 23 under regular rider Kylee Jordan. Martin said Tyler’s Tribe scoped clean following each work and believes a two-turn race won’t be as physically taxing on the gelding, thus lessening the chances of bleeding again.
“My gallop boy, Kylee, they think he’ll go long and I think it’s easier on the horse,” Martin said. “I may be wrong, but I believe it. This will be four months in between races. I gave him like 70 days before I ever started back breezing him.”
Tyler’s Tribe had been under consideration for Saturday’s inaugural $200,000 Hot Springs Stakes for 3-year-olds at 1 mile before Martin opted for the allowance spot, an extra written by Oaklawn racing secretary Pat Pope. The move allows Tyler’s Tribe to run on Lasix. Martin said he regularly breezes with the medication.
“I think the distance is going to better for the bleeding,” said Martin, who has 149 career Oaklawn victories. “If there’s speed in there, I think he’ll rate. Kylee said he’ll rate. She’s always said that. He’s good. He’s come back good. I’ve scoped him after every work. Clean as a whistle.”
Tyler’s Tribe, the 8-5 program favorite, is scheduled to break from post 6 under Jordan. The early 9-5 second choice is Echo Again, a hot 2-year-old prospect last summer for Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen.
Tyler’s Tribe won his first five career starts, all dirt sprints at Prairie Meadows in Iowa, by a combined 59 ¾ front-running lengths before being eased after bleeding in the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint (G1) Nov. 4 at Keeneland. The use of race-day Lasix is prohibited in the Breeders’ Cup.
From the first crop of millionaire Grade 1 winner Sharp Azteca, Tyler’s Tribe has a 5-0-1 record from seven lifetime starts and earnings of $320,169. A $34,000 yearling purchase, Tyler’s Tribe is a four-time stakes winner for Martin and co-owner Thomas D. Lepic.
Probable post time for Thursday’s seventh race is 3:50 p.m. (Central). The race is strictly for 3-year-olds.
In conjunction with moving to four-day race weeks (Thursday-Sunday) in March, Oaklawn will offer free parking, excluding valet, free programs and $1 hot dogs each Thursday throughout the month. … Grade 3 winner Rocket Can arrived Tuesday morning to run in Saturday’s $1.25 million Arkansas Derby (G1) for Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott and owner Frank Fletcher of North Little Rock, Ark. The Into Mischief colt had previously been based in Florida. …
Key of Life ($7) represented the 33rd career Oaklawn stakes winner for trainer Brad Cox in last Saturday’s $150,000 Purple Martin for 3-year-old filly sprinters. Cox, a two-time Eclipse Award winner as the country’s outstanding trainer, recorded his 282d career victory in Sunday’s third race with Opening Night ($6.20). …
Opening Night was the 717th career Oaklawn winner for jockey Ricardo Santana Jr. Santana is the seventh-winning jockey in Oaklawn history. …
Jockey Francisco Arrieta rode two winners Sunday to push his 2022-2023 Oaklawn total to 62 and equal his single-season career high in Hot Springs. Arrieta won the first race aboard favored West Side Girl ($3.60) and the fifth race aboard favored Polterer($7.40). Arrieta rode 50 winners in his Oaklawn debut in 2021 and shared the 2021-2022 title with 62 victories. … West Side Girl and Polterer gave trainer Greg Compton his first career Oaklawn double. Compton, a North Little Rock, Ark., native, recorded his first of 47 career Oaklawn victories to date in 2009.