Vacation Dance triumphant in the Atlantic Beach (NYRA/Coglianese)
NYRA Press Office
OZONE PARK, N.Y.— Sleeping Giant Stables, America’s Pastime Stables and KimDon Racing’s Vacation Dance earned a career-best 86 Beyer Speed Figure for his gate-to-wire score in Saturday’s $120,000 Atlantic Beach, a six-furlong outer turf sprint for juveniles, at Aqueduct Racetrack.
Trained by John Kimmel and piloted by Kendrick Carmouche, the New York-bred and New York-sired Vacation Dance broke alertly and took command through splits of 22.30 seconds and 44.65 over the firm going. The multiple stakes-placed No Nay Hudson, who was expected to be a pace threat, broke awkwardly from the inside post under Paco Lopez and forced to track in second position.
Vacation Dance was a half-length in front at the stretch call, but had plenty in reserve to pull away from No Nay Hudson for a 1 1/4-length win in a final time of 1:08.41.
“Kendrick said he will be very rateable but when he saw Paco had a tough break with the other speed horse, he decided to go on and take the lead,” Kimmel said. “He’s doing well this morning. He ate all his dinner last night, that’s for sure.”
A grey son of the late The Lieutenant, Vacation Dance was a debut maiden winner in September at Saratoga Race Course under Carmouche, but Hall of Famer Javier Castellano took over for the Futurity and provided a similar prominent trip.
Kimmel said Vacation Dance was hampered by missing a breeze into the Futurity, a race he entered after scratching from the 1 1/16-mile Pilgrim on October 2 here due to the wet going.
“I thought he would move forward off his previous event,” Kimmel said. “He went into it on a light training program and then he hadn’t worked for 15 days going into the Futurity because of the all the bad weather. Plus, he was the only horse in that race that had only one start, so we had reasons to think he would move forward – and he did.”
Kimmel said that Vacation Dance will now attempt to switch surfaces for the $500,000 NYSSS Great White Way, a seven-furlong sprint over the Big A main track on December 17.
“We’ll breeze him a couple times on the dirt and see if it looks like something he’ll be able to do,” Kimmel said. “If he’s totally discouraged by it then we’ll give him the winter off.”
Bred in the Empire State by Harry Landry and James Hogan, Vacation Dance is out of the Zensational mare Matinee Express. He was purchased for $90,000 at the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic 2-Year-Olds in Training Sale.