ATB’S IN WEEKEND STAKES
There are three Accredited Texas-breds competing in stakes on Saturday at Fair Grounds.
Bret Calhoun will send out Craig Upham’s homebred Patrona Margarita Special Rate – Margarita Mistress) in a field of 8 for the $200,000 Rachel Alexandra Stakes (G2) for3-year-old fillies going a mile and a sixteenth on the turf. In her last out, she won the $200,000 Pocahontas Stakes (G2) at Churchill Downs back on September 16th by a whopping 3 ¾ lengths. The morning line has her at 6-1 for this race.
There are two Texas-breds in a field of 12 for the $50,000 Colonal Power Overnight Stakes for 4-year-olds and up going 5 ½ furlongs on the turf.
Bred by Hall Family Trust, multiple stakes winner Imma Bling (Too Much Bling – Imma Be a Wildcat) now runs for Flurry Racing Stables LLC (Staton Flurry) and is trained by Karl Broberg. The 5-year-old gelding won the $50,000 Spirit of Texas Stakes by 11 lengths at Sam Houston Race Park on January 27th. He also won the $75,000 Bonapaw Stakes at Fair Grounds on December 16th.
Calhoun will saddle Kissthatbabygoodby (Sing Baby Sing – Shaved Ice) for N 2 Win Racing (Michael P. Childers). Bred by Tom Durant, he finished 2nd in an allowance optional claiming race here on January 25th. Both horses have odds of 12-1.
IVAN FALLUNOVALOT AIMS FOR HOT SPRINGS STAKES AND MILLIONAIRE STATUS
Oaklawn Park reports that Texas-bred Ivan Fallunovalot will make his next start in the $125,000 Hot Springs Stakes for older sprinters March 10th, according to owner Lewis Mathews.
The 6-furlong Hot Springs will be the second opportunity for Ivan Fallunovalot to reach $1 million in career earnings, which Mathews said is a major goal before the 8-year-old Texas-bred gelding is retired to the owner’s farm in Bismarck, Arkansas.
Ivan Fallunovalot has earned $986,403 in a 30-race career that includes 17 victories, two of which came in Oaklawn’s King Cotton Stakes (2015 and 2016).
Ivan Fallunovalot had a chance to become a seven-figure money winner in the $125,000 King Cotton February 3rd, but finished second, beaten two lengths by Wilbo, following a tardy break and racing five-wide on the turn in the 6-furlong event.
“Terrible start,” said Mathews, who claimed the gelding for $25,000 at the 2014 Oaklawn meeting. “He showed a lot of heart. He didn’t quit. A lot of horses would have quit.”
Ivan Fallunovalot, the 2015 TTA Texas Horse of the Year, also finished second in his 2018 debut, a January 14th allowance/optional claimer that was a local prep for the King Cotton. Wilbo also won that race by a length.
Ivan Fallunovalot finished second in the 2015 Hot Springs, which is the final major local prep for the $400,000 Count Fleet Sprint Handicap (G3) April 14th.
Mathews said the major spring objective for Ivan Fallunovalot, who is trained by Tom Howard of Hot Springs, is the Count Fleet.
TEXAS RACING COMMISSION ACTION
The Texas Racing Commission met in Austin on February 13 and passed a rule increasing the annual license fees for Class 1 racetracks while reducing fees for Class 2 and 3 racetracks as well as greyhound tracks, covering a base of 68 days of live horse racing and 36 performances of live greyhound racing per fiscal year. However, the rule also provides that unless the Commission amends these provisions, fees for state fiscal years beginning September 1, 2018, and thereafter will revert to the previous levels and cover a base of 143 days of live horse racing and 270 performances of live greyhound racing per calendar year.
Commission staff reported initiating the process to request an independent audit of the agency’s economy, efficiency and effectiveness of its operations. Commissioners then passed a rule granting the Commission authority to assess a supplemental racetrack license fee to pay for such an audit.
NOTES: If you are looking to save money with no hassle, check out the discounts offered on equipment and products by Toro, Rhino, Exmark, FarmPaint and Massey Ferguson available through Equine Equipment – Manufacturers Discounts for the Horse World. Details at www.equinesavings.com…Our condolences to TQHA Director of Racing Rob Werstler whose son passed away recently.