Friday, April 15, 2011

Revenge is sweet; takes short field at long price

Lime Rock Revenge, off from the races since being scratched from a start at Del Mar in late July last year, on Friday afternoon at Santa Anita looked like a horse who hadn't missed a beat.

And he wasn't going to be beaten.

The 3-year-old gelding broke maiden in his second start for trainer Doug O'Neill last year, then was scrubbed from a starter allowance at Del Mar and clearly needed some time off to overcome an injury or ailment. He went back into training late in December and has ramped up the work schedule since, with recent drills of a minute flat, 47-flat and 1:12.20 for five, four and six furlongs since moving from the synthetic at Hollywood Park onto the dirt at Santa Anita leading up to this start.

Still, he was sent off at nearly 8/1 odds this afternoon (equal to the morning line) in what was to be a five-horse field of $50,000 claimers that was scratched down to four. And Lime Rock Revenge promptly won like he should have been the favorite.

Kerwin John hustled Lime Rock Revenge from the gate to engage 6/5 favorite (and three-time winner) Montellano every step of the way. John's comeback gelding was on the lead at each call through blistering fractions of 21.24 and 43.70, which probably raised the confidence of Martin Pedroza aboard Chinese Praise and Rafael Bejarano aboard First Strike as they trailed the leaders through a seemingly suicidal pace.

Montellano folded. Lime Rock Revenge most certainly did not.

With Chinese Praise hitting his best best stride late -- and having covered the first six furlongs in a withering 1:08.98 -- Lime Rock Revenge dug deep enough to stay in front by a half-length at the wire over the closer. First Strike was five lengths beaten in third, while Montellano came home 18 1/2 lengths in arrears of the long-shot who ran him off his feet. Final time for 6 1/2 furlongs was a solid 1:15.86.

He paid $17.20 to win in a four-horse race.

The son of Limehouse-Genie's Flight, by Silver Hawk, was bred in Florida by A. Claire Silva and now has earned $39,400 from two wins in three California starts, with victories over synthetic and conventional dirt.

I recommended Lime Rock Revenge out of last year's Ocala Breeders' Sales Co. April auction of 2-year-olds in training, where he was a $16,000 RNA when run through the ring as Hip 1082. He was already gelded, perhaps decreasing interest in him as he'd never be a stallion prospect. But I liked that while his 15-race-maiden dam was never a winner, she'd already produced 11 winners from 13 prior foals (including stakes winner SILVER ON SILVER) and Lime Rock Revenge's second dam, T. V. Genie, was a G3-placed half-sister to five-times Horse of the Year KELSO.

If they can keep him sound, he just might be serious business.

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  1. Great looking win........ and nice pick as well...paid great for a four horse field.

  2. I decided to single "Revenge" in my early $0.50 Pick Four, followed by my main picks as singletons, for a ticket total cost of fifty cents. I actually built the ticket around my Race Three $20 Double of Mutually Benefit with Fairway Road, almost as an afterthought.
    They all came in, anchored by "Revenge." I'm glad I played it ten times, for a ticket grand total of only five bucks. Plus, I had Lime Rock Revenge on a straight $20 win bet.
    After that 43.70 half, I thought for sure he would stop, but he absolutely burned up the track. Nice lookin' horse and a nice score that paid my property taxes!

  3. Wow, Jack, that WAS a nice score. Congratulations!

  4. Silver Hawk has carried the Roberto line proudly through his mares, both on the track and in the breeding shed. How about his lesser-known son Hawkster? Since gaining notoriety as the broodmare sire of Afleet Alex (Maggy Hawk), there's little news about this 12f turf track record holder. Was this a lightning-in-the-bottle catch for Cash is King Stables? You can save a bit by going to AA's full brother Unforgettable Max ($1.5K) at Stonewall Ocala South where KY derby winning sire Lesroidesanimaux also stands for $10K.
    Would Hawkster mares cross well with any sire line other than the Afleet-Mr. P proven success we saw with Afleet Alex?


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