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Mother Nature plays tricks on KYSS opener

August 18, 2017

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Mother Nature was much kinder to the boys on Thursday night at The Red Mile than she was to the girls in the first leg of Kentucky Sires Stakes (KYSS) for 2-year-old trotters. The first three races on the card were $30,000 KYSS divisions for colt and geldings, and they were contested under hot and sultry conditions. Three $30,000 races for fillies were raced beginning in Race 6, and when that field got underway the skies opened up with torrential rain, making viewing around the last turn virtually impossible.

In the first male division that kicked off the card, US Marshall posted a 1:56 victory for driver Corey Callahan. US Marshall's task was made much easier when the 3-5 favorite Dawson Springs made a break at the start. With Callahan directing, US Marshall cruised to a 3 ½-length decision over B Threeseven, with Max finishing third.

A son of Muscle Massive, US Marshall is a full brother to the stakes-winning Treviso. A $45,000 yearling purchase from breeders Steve Stewart and Pedigree Farm, US Marshall is owned by trainer Greg Peck and Christy Markos. The win was US Marshall's first in two starts.

Jimmy Takter then steered his own Wolfgang to a gate-to-wire win in 1:54.2 in the second KYSS split for the colts and geldings. Sent off the even-money favorite, Wolfgang scored by two lengths over Hat Trick Habit, with Raileegotaholdonme third.

Bred by Fair Island Farm, Wolfgang is a half-brother to the $306,000-winner Chef Lee. Fair Island Farm retained an interest in the son of Kentucky Futurity winner My MVP who sold as a yearling for $60,000 with Brixton Medical Ab, Goran Falk and Hatfield Stables.

Wolfgang is also an example of the new conditions for the KYSS program as his first career start came in an Ohio Sires Stakes division on July 8 at Northfield Park. Wolfgang's win Thursday in KYSS came in his second start.

Haveitalltogether also went gate to wire to win the third KYSS split for colts and geldings in 1:56.2 for Charlie Norris. The 3-5 favorite Storming Miss finished 2 ¼ lengths behind in second, with Broadway Bruiser third.

Joel Smith trains the winning son of Cantab Hall, who was a $30,000 yearling purchase from breeder Kentuckian Farms by owners Pinske Stables, Andy Miller Stable and Kentuckiana Racing Stable. Havitalltogether came into the raxce with a pair of seconds in three attempts in Pennsylvania Sires Stakes (PASS) action.

And then the rains came! A light shower that began as the gate was rolling for Race 6, the first KYSS division for fillies quickly turned into a heavy downpour, which then turned into a monsoon. Regular announcer Gabe Prewitt had turned the microphone over for the race to Mark McKelvie, who will be the racecaller during the upcoming Grand Circuit meet, and McKelvie, announcing for the first time ever at The Red Mile, had such a hard time seeing the horses that in the final turn he simply announced, "The fillies are out there somewhere!"

When the fillies did reach the wire, it was Nixie Volo who was ahead of the field in 1:57.1. Favorite Special Hill was 1 ¾ lengths behind in second, with Bandol Rose third.

Also coming off two starts—both breaks—in PASS, Nixie Volo is trained by John Butenschoen for owners Kentuckiana Racing Stable, VIP Internet Stable and 83 Racing. The daughter of Yankee Glide was a $22,000 yearling purchase from breeder Jorgen Jahre Jr.

The rain let up some but the toteboard lit up in the second KYSS division for fillies when 103-1 Passionate Miss scored a 2:00.2 victory over the "sloppy" track. Driven by trainer Dan Shetler, Passionate Miss won by 2 ¼ lengths over Honey Honey.

Making just her second career start, Passionate Miss is a daughter of Muscle Hill owned by Shetler, Jo Anne Shetler and Sawgrass Farms. The Shetlers also bred Passionate Miss.

The last KYSS race on the program saw Zoe Bi and driver Aaron Merriman win in 1:59, besting D'Bomb by a head with Lovely Lindy third. Chris Beaver trains and shares ownership of the daughter of Donato Hanover with Marion Beachy and Synerco Ventures. Bred by M. Biasuzzi Stable, Zoe Bi was a $15,000 yearling purchase, and with her KYSS victory—her fifth in a row—she now has earnings of $72,893.
Mother Nature also played a role in the outcome of the last KYSS race as Deschanel, starting from post 10, made a break while splashing through a puddle that had formed on the outside of the track surfact. Given an interference break for being interfered with by the puddle, Deschanel was subsequently taken out of the wagering by the track judges and all monies wagered were refunded.
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