For several years, the EWC residency has held a pair of Showcase races early in the year. This is the opportunity for the participants in the residency to flaunt their newly bred 2 year olds as they step onto the race track for the first time. The residency supports numerous tracks in the sim world (but not all of them). There is a breeding restriction with the horses who can run in the race as the sire must come from one of the tracks that the residency supports. In this case, Kentucky does not qualify which puts a dent into some of the top line sires.
There are two races slated for this weekend, one on the turf and one on the grass and this article will focus on the dirt race which is set for 5.5 furlongs in California. All the entrants in this race are colts, with the exception of one filly, TSR’s Club Star.
UNHLOY CREED (#17, 67/1) is owned by Liddleski and is a colt who has been sired by Jimmy Creed. He’s out of game mare You Talk To Much who won 2 races in 19 starts but both came on the turf. Despite the favoritism of the mother liking the grass, there is some dirt heritage in the bloodline with links to Distorted Humor, Storm Cat, Forty Niner amongst others that may work well for this Australian bred child.
JAPANISE DEPUTY (#6, 23/1) is owned by Royaldenmark and like the name reflects, this guy was born in Japan. This colt is the son of Dubai Denmark, a stake winning he-mare in the game who ran exclusively on the dirt and compiled five wins in 38 starts. This two year old is sired by French Deputy and brings the bloodline of Deputy Minister into play.
EWC LITE FOUR (#16, 42/1) is owned by Cuetec who again brings his Lite brand of beverage into the event. Lite Four is foaled in New York and sired by Mission Impazible. There is a little in-breeding with the DS and DDS as those both were sired by Storm Cat. The in-breeding comes from game-mare Pistol Skias who race 46 times with 6 wins and ITM 22 times. This is the 10th child from the mare and she has two kids who have won stake races. So the in-breeding may not be too potent with this kid.
PHAROAH’S NEPHEW (#10, 15/1) has been entered by Millerfarm and is sired by St Patrick’s Day and foaled in the state of Florida. Ligia Elena was recently retired from racing and is the mother to this runner and she won twice in twelve starts with both wins on the dirt. The bloodline looks clean with no in-breeding apparent and looks to favor the dirt with Empire Maker, Woodman and Forty Niner housed within the bloodline.
HIGHLY ORIGINAL (#7, 8/1) is owned by Marky 4577 and comes from game mare VIM who picked up a pair of dirt wins over her 15 race career. Highly Original is the first child out of this mare and has been sired by Henny Hughes which makes him foaled in Japan. The bloodline favors the dirt with Storm Cat, Unbridled and Mr. Prospector in the deep roots of the bloodline.
ROMAN DOWNPOUR (#13, 23/1) is owned by Crawf68 and is the child of retired mare Prayers For Rain who had 41 starts in her career in a mix of dirt and grass races with 4 wins, three of which were on the soil. Roman Downpour is the tenth child out of this mare and only four of his brother and sisters have picked up a win in the allowance level. Bred in Wyoming and sired by Trojan Nation, with two big names in the bloodline of Streed Cry and Sadler’s Wells which could result in the colt liking both dirt and grass.
MR. ESKENDEREYA (#14, 9/2) has been gelded by owner Sjmeola who went the way of scratch breeding this guy. He’s foaled in Japan and sired by Eskendereya with Mr. Prospector used as the DS and Danzig in the DDS position. A very nicely bred horse with hopes that the early gelding process will help keep his focus on getting to the finish line in the top spot.
PILS (#1, 18/1) is owned by Neonshadow and was foaled right here at this racetrack (California). He is the eighth child of Germantown, a mare that won three times on the dirt during her 25 race career. Quick Rotation is one of her children who won the G3 Stubenville on the turf but raced successfully on both track surfaces. As for Pils, he is sired by Stay Thirsty and brings nice bloodline connections of Bernardini and AP Indy into play which should mix nicely with connections to Storm Cat, Gone West and Thunder Gulch which his mother brings into play.
TSR’s CLUB STAR (#5, 24/1) is entered by Tstack and is the only filly in this race. She is sired by Clubhouse Ride and was foaled locally in California. Her mother, TSR’s Ready Star is a G3 winner with over $400,000 in lifetime earnings in 27 starts with 5 wins She has two previous children, both have won allowance races and have had top three finishes in stake or graded races. The bloodline doesn’t contain the top “brand” names but that may not be needed in this case as the mother was a grade winner and this ones siblings have already been ITM in stake races. Success may continue with Club Star.
NILE RAIDER HF (#9, 82/1) will make his debut for owner Hemarfarms. He is one who has been locally bred in California and is sired by Empire of D’Nile. Stake winning mare Black N Grey is his mother and she raced an amazing 65 times with 18 wins, of which only two were on the dirt. Nile is the tenth child to the game mare and has one sibling who is a stake winner. There is a mix of dirt and grass in the blood line with Danzig, AP Indy, Pioneerof The Nile and others present in the breeding. Racing ability could go either way but I think it may lean towards the grass which hopefully I am wrong in this dirt race.
PROOFISNEEDED (#11, 192/1) is owned by Brit9 who opted for a scratchbred runner. This colt was foaled in California by sire Win The Space. Dixie Dot Com is the DS and Idiot Proof brings up the rear end as the DDS. Win the Space is a first year sire and this is the second child borne to the mare. Top name AP Indy is deep rooted in the bloodline and may be the best to see here. We’ll need a little “proof” that this scratchbred has what it takes to win this event.
KOBE’S FADE AWAY (#2, 29/1) is an obvious tribute to the basketball legend and is a scratch bred, which one can say was appropriately bred using Kobe’s Back as the sire. This colt was foaled in Maryland and adds Forestry as the DS and Sunday Silence to the back end as the DDS. Dirt ability is apparent with the likes of AP Indy and Storm Cat build into the bloodline.
I JUST FLY (#15, 7/2) is owned by Kashbarn and is a scratchbred who has been foaled in Australia. Justify, who was ranked as #1 in breeding in 2019 was chosen as the sire. The backside is complemented with Street Cry as the DS and Secretariat as DDS. Bred for the dirt with some name brands may turn out to be a justified acquisition.
PUTYOURMONEYTOWORK (#3, 13/1) has been entered into the race by owner Atthewire (born in Saudi Arabia) who produced a dam-bred colt with Swindlng, an 8-time winning mare, as the mother. This is the eighth bred horse to the mare who has produced multiple allowance winners as well as one stake winner. First Defence is the sire and there is an awful lot of top namers in the bloodline that include Seattle Slew, Deputy Minister, Storm Cat and the list goes on. Mother Swindlin raced and won all of her races on the dirt and putting money into this horse may just work out!
CHARMING TOWNCAT (#4, 39/1) will represent owner Smittie684 in this event who is the third baby out of game mare Onceuponadecember. This mare was winless in 10 career tries however, the two kids currently racing have won a combined total of three times, all on the dirt. Charming Towncat was foaled in Ohio by Cowtown Cat and there is dirt capability in the blood stream with the likes of Secretariat, Forty Niner, Storm Cat and a few other well-known runners. The concern with this runner is how much will the mother’s race performance weigh this cold down?
SHOWFLAKE (#11, 8/1) is the cleverly named colt owned by Denovo who will compete in this Showcase race. He’s a dam-bred horse who was foaled in Japan by Eskendereya. The mother, Flappage, is a stake winner with 8 victories (all on dirt) over 42 race appearances. This is her sixth child with three allowance winners and two stake winners. There is some nice ability in the bloodline which is evidenced linkages to Seattle Slew, Mr. Prospector and even the old Tom Rolfe. The last two babies out of Flappage have become stake winners so we may see a trend here and the third could be a charm with Showflake!
PRAISING PYE (#12, 7/2) is owned by Tyedye and is foaled in Australia by American Pharoah. He is the son to game mare Holy Bulb who took home the gold (and a G1 win) in the 2014 Equinics. This is the sixth bred horse to this mare with two of the children winning grade level races and the other three finishing in-the-money in either a graded or listed stake race. Dirt running ability is definitely in the bloodline as all five of her kids have earned their wins on the dirt, as well as the mother. No reason to suspect this one would be the exception.
The oddmakers seem to think only three horses have a shot here and have tagged them at odd under 5/1. But will they be correct?
Ok, I’m on board with the co-favorite Praising Pye having the advantage here. He’s out of a proven mare who has produced several stake winners. This one could be another notch on the wall.
Putyourmoneytowork is my second choice and I hope to “kash” in on this one. Lots of top names in the bloodline and a mother who has produced multiple allowance winners could be just the right formula to find a first time winner here.
Showflake gets my third nod and what’s not to like with the name? Oh, and there is the mother who has bred allowance and stake winners plus a decent bloodline.
Throwing in a fourth pick with Kobe’s Fade Away, a tribute to the all-star hoop player and a win would be a great coincidence.
Final pick to my own horse, I Just Fly. He’s the co-favorite in this race and is a scratch-bred with a focus of producing a dirt winner. However, whenever I have a horse that is a favorite in a big race, it loses.