Here & There – Feb. 25

- -

Big stakes weekend and lots of movement at the top of the game. Who’s your Derby horse? Who’s your Oaks horse? Who’s your pick in the Big Cap? More food for thought comes in the Here and There contributions for this week.

Names of the Week

Kaigun: Translates to Navy in Japanese. The 4-year-old is by Northern Afleet out of Cruising Kris. He won an allowance on the turf at Gulfstream Saturday.

Party Bus: A winner at Turfway Park Saturday, the 4-year-old filly is out of Takemeoutonthetown.

Take A Number
$869,500: Receipts from the complete disperal of Pennsylvania breeder Mimi Thorington’s horses at the recent Fasig-Tipton Winter Mixed Sale. Broodmare Hidden Expression topped the sale at $360,000.

 1: Three-time Maryland-bred Horse of the Year (in history) after Ben’s Cat was named the 2013 champion. He’s looking for four in 2014.

Worth Repeating

“Maybe if he could have talked he could have said, ‘Hey boss, my ankles are bothering me a little,’ but he can’t so we didn’t know.” – Trainer Gary Contessa, on the tender ankles that sidelined Rydilluc last year

“I go home when the snow comes, because I feel for my family. I’ve been there for all the snowstorms.” – Upstate New York resident Contessa, on getting the full dose of winter despite spending much of in Florida with his horses

“He’s doing fine. He had a good work Wednesday and he’ll come back next Wednesday (this week) and work him five-eighths and see where we stand and go from there.” – Trainer Shug McGaughey, on 3-year-old stakes horse Honor Code

“He’s always been a talented horse, he just wouldn’t give it to me. His feet have been a problem, but we got that straightened out. Last winter I worked him on the turf at Payson and wasn’t overly impressed. This winter, it’s different. He has worked very well and trained well. It’s a big step up for him. If he steps forward, there will be a lot of nice spots for him.” – McGaughey, on Reload the day before the horse won Saturday’s Canadian Turf stakes at Gulfstream Park

“I won the Marshua’s River down here one year and it wasn’t even graded, but I consider her a Grade 1 winner. That’s how tough a race it was.” – McGaughey, on the depth of stakes fields at Gulfstream Park; he was referring to the 2010 race, which Quiet Harbor won in a five-way photo

“I came back triumphant, but I also came back with my tail between my legs a little bit.” – Pennsylvania-based sales consignor Rick Abbott, who sold the sales topper at the Fasig-Tipton Winter Mixed Sale, but also left his wife Dixie at home with no electricity (one foal was delivered by candlelight)

“Unfortunately one horse that I was excited about running today is scratched due to a foot abscess. It just happened to open up already. Timing is everything right?” – Trainer Linda Rice last Friday as she was forced to scratch recent claim Oltre’ Oro from an allowance-optional at Aqueduct

“It’s great anytime in this sport when you can give the fans something to cheer for and create an attraction to these great animals. I would really look forward to having three or four races against She’s a Tiger, where we traded paint all year long, it would be fun. Especially if I came out on the winning end.” – Jeremiah Englehart, trainer of Ria Antonia, on possible rematch sometime this year with champion She’s a Tiger, who was disqualified from last year’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies in favor of his filly