Skip a Smile, the 2011 Texas-bred horse of the year, withstood a claim of foul by the rider of Coyote Legend, who won the same honor in 2012, to win Saturday night’s $50,000 Jersey Village at Sam Houston Race Park. Skip a Smile won by a length over Doctor Romane, while Coyote Legend ended up sixth after being forced to check sharply in the stretch under jockey Roman Chapa.
Glen Murphy rode Skip a Smile, who raced in fourth along the rail in the early stages of the 1 1/16-mile Jersey Village, with Coyote Legend prompting the pace in second. Skip a Smile launched his bid on the final turn of the turf race, from the inside. In midstretch, he moved out to go through an opening as Coyote Legend was taken up sharply in a development that led Chapa to lodge an objection against the riders of both Skip a Smile and fifth-place finisher Sarah’s Choice. After a lengthy review, there was no change made to the order of finish.
Skip a Smile, a 6-year-old gelding by Skip Away, covered the distance on firm ground in 1:44.84. He paid $3.40 as the favorite, while Coyote Legend was the second choice. Skip a Smile won his eighth career stakes in the Jersey Village. Overall, he has won 11 of 27 starts and $464,639.
Rose Mary Chandler bred and owns Skip a Smile, who is trained by Steve Asmussen.