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Fall campaign starts off well for Winter Memories

Kirkwood stables graduate picks up first Grade I win

Posted: September 27, 2011 2:10 p.m.
Updated: September 28, 2011 5:00 a.m.

What was a strong spring and summer season for horses who received their starts at Kip Elser’s Kirkwood Stables in Camden has opened with a strong beginning to the fall.

Hunt Crossing, a 2-year-old colt trained by Todd Pletcher for Dell Ennis, scored a three-length victory in Saturday’s $132,000 Monmouth Park NATC Futurity, which was run over a muddy dirt track.

Ridden by Elvis Trujillo, Hunt Crossing was never worse than second in the six-furlong race which drew a field of six starters. The winner led by 5 ½ lengths when the field had traveled a half-mile. The winning time was 1:10.51.

By Corinthian - Silver Lace, by Silver Deputy, Hunt Crossing broke his maiden in his debut, scoring a four-length win at Saratoga on Aug. 3. This was the third start and second win for Hunt Crossing which now has $110,417 in earnings.

On Sept. 18, Button Girl, a 3-year-old Mizzen Mast - Jangada, by Raft filly, ran second to In Step in the $60,000 Queen Tutta Stakes at Belmont Park, adding black type to her resume.

Ridden by Cornelio Velasquez for trainer Ralph Nicks, Button Girl was three wide in the stretch, chasing down In Step, but came up a 1 ¼-lengths short.

The $12,000 payday brought the filly’s earnings to $66,900. It was the fifth start of her career in which she has two wins and now, a second.

The hottest graduate of Kirkwood

Trainer Jimmy Toner made the decision to switch jockeys aboard the 3-year-old El Prado-Memories of Silver by Silver Hawk filly as Javier Castellano picked up the rider after Jose Lezcano finished fourth in the $150,000 Woodford Reserve Stakes at Saratoga --- in which she was a 2-5 favorite --- in her last start.

With Castellano in the saddle, Winter Memories was held back and was running shotgun on the bunched-up field of eight at the top of the stretch in the 1 1/8-mile run over the turf course. She bided her time before finding an opening and pulling up with leader More Than Real before pulling away and holding off Theyskens Theory by a neck for the victory.

The winning time was 1:51.06.

The victory was the fourth in five starts this year for Winter Memories, which opened her 3-year-old campaign by winning the Grade III Appalachian at Keeneland, the Grade II Sands Point and the Grade II Lake George at Saratoga.

Winter Memories is now 6-1-0 in eight career starts in which she has brought home $698,100 in earnings.

Toner has yet to announce where Winter Memories will make her next start. A Breeders’ Cup day race is not, yet, out of the question.

Thiel has a winner at Foxfield Fall Races:

Thiel is a past director of the Carolina Cup Racing Association.

Trained by Ricky Hendriks, who had two-time defending National Steeplechase Association riding champion Paddy Young in the saddle, Sir Dynamite scored a 1 1/4-lenth victory over Winning Vow (Christopher Read).

The winning time for the 2 1/8-mile steeplechase race was 4:26.80.

The NSA fall season continues this weekend as the circuit heads to the two-day Virginia Fall Races in Middleburg on Saturday and Sunday

 

(Turned from Home is a regular feature in the sports pages of the Chronicle-Independent spotlighting Thoroughbred flat horses, which were sent to the track from Camden, as well as local owners and trainers. Any persons having racing information which they would like to pass along and be included in this column should call the C-I sports department at 432-6157 or, via e-mail at tdidato@chronicle-independent.com.)

Sir Dynamite, a 6-year-old gelding owned by Camden’s Dale Thiel opened the card at Sunday’s Foxfield Fall Races by winning the $10,000 maiden claiming hurdle.
on the track at the present time is Winter Memories, which scored her first Grade I victory by taking the $250,000 Garden City Stakes at Belmont on Sept. 17.

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