Captain Albano Manages To Keep Winning

Captain Albano
Published: October 7, 2023 04:11 pm EDT

In their matchup last week, Captain Albano snapped Newsroom’s unbeaten record. With the pair escaping one another in the International Stallion Stakes on Saturday, Oct. 7 at The Red Mile, Captain Albano and Newsroom posted the fastest victories of the four divisions for two-year-old pacing colts and geldings.

Captain Albano (pictured above) catapulted from off the speed to notch another victory going away in 1:50.1 to win in the opening $72,000 International Stallion Stakes division for the frosh pacing colts and geldings.

Driver Todd McCarthy asserted Captain Albano into the pace through a :27 first quarter but yielded command to Total Stranger into the backstretch. Total Stranger then let a lively Cupid Shuffle dart from fourth to the lead through a :55.2 half as he keenly carried the field to the final turn. Cupid Shuffle held a diminishing lead by three-quarters in 1:23.1 and turned for home under siege with Captain Albano charging strongest of all. McCarthy moved Captain Albano to the centre of the track and zipped by to record a widening three-length victory over 37-1 shot Courtship closing for second. Cupid Shuffle held third from Steely Knife in fourth.

“We picked him out at Harrisburg and thought he was maybe on the small side, but he grew into himself and he’s been getting better every week,” said co-owner Lou Manfredi, of LA Express Stable. “Hopefully he stays healthy until [Breeders Crown]. We plan on going.”

Winning his sixth race from seven starts, Captain Albano has now banked $275,680 for owners Patricia Stable, LA Express & Sjoblom Inc. and Michael Dolan. Noel Daley trains the son of Captaintreacherous who paid $2.14 to win.

Handed his first loss in his career last week by Captain Albano, Newsroom returned to the winner’s circle with a game victory in the second frosh pacing colt and gelding dash.

Starting from the pylon post in his $71,000 division, Newsroom pushed for the lead to a :27.4 first quarter with Boston Rocks settling into the pocket and Lou Vuitton sitting third. Newsroom strolled to the half in :55.4 and to three-quarters in 1:23.3 and braved the crashing waters through the stretch to win in 1:50.1. Boston Rocks made an attack through a seam at the inside but was fended off by a neck. Lou Vuitton angled to the outside but finished three-quarters of a length back in third. Captain Luke kicked off a helmet late but was left in fourth.

“He’s pretty tough [on the front],” said winning driver David Miller. “So far, no complaints with him. Today, he got a little rank in the hole – I was going to try to race him out of a hole – but he felt back to his old self today and fought them off through the stretch.”

Newsroom has now won seven times from eight starts and earned $223,025 for owner Val D’Or Farms. Joe Holloway trains the colt by Always B Miki who paid $3.26 to win.

Ron Burke scored a victory in the third division with Booming Economy, a fresh acquisition who motored down the road to a 1:50.3 mile in his $71,000 split.

Booming Economy swept from post six to the top to a :27.3 first quarter with Nuclear sitting the pocket. Better Is Nice, the 2-5 favourite, sat fifth and waited to make his move through a :55.4 half, though picked up his speed to the turn as Booming Economy tried to sprint away. Yannick Gingras slipped clear of his rivals to three-quarters in 1:23.3 and kept Booming Economy to task as he wandered through the lane. Nuclear mounted a bid to the inside that fell a head short at the beam while Better Is Nice settled for third. Icaco Hanover took fourth.

A colt by Captaintreacherous, Booming Economy competes for owner-breeders Howard Taylor, Chuck Pompey and Edwin Gold. He won his third race from seven starts and pushed his bankroll to $120,000. Booming Economy paid $7.70 to win.

Cote Keim’s Captaintreacherous gelding Magnifico Hanover went another muy magnífico effort with a 1:51.1 pillar-to-post job in the final division for pacing colts and geldings.

Brian Sears sent Magnifico Hanover for the front to pocket 1-5 favourite Remember The Alamo through a :26.4 first quarter. No challenges came for Magnifico Hanover through the middle half, so he strolled through a clip of :56.3 and 1:25. Remember The Alamo tipped out of second as Ivy Park rushed along the rim through the final turn but Magnifico Hanover split away from his competition in the lane. Avenger Force gained ground to the inside to snag second from a flattened-out Remember The Alamo, beaten 2-3/4 lengths, with Number Cruncher taking fourth.

“He’s done everything we’ve asked so far,” said Sears. “He’s a very smart horse and knows what he’s doing. [We] got a pretty slow second quarter – pretty good headwind right now – so he kind of made it his own way.”

Magnifico Hanover has now won four times from five tries and earned $102,625. Cote Keim trains the gelding, who paid $8.12 to win.

Three of the four divisions for the $285,000 International Stallion Stakes for two-year-old pacing colts and geldings went as “The Tall Dark Stranger” and were sponsored by the Tall Dark Stranger Syndicate and Hanover Shoe Farms. The other division went as “The All Bets Off” and was sponsored by Woodbine Mohawk Park.

Pizzelle Powers to Fastest Win in International Stallion Stakes

Chris Beaver pupil Pizzelle pulled off the pylons to the final turn and slid to the lead with ease to nab the first of four $86,500-plus International Stallion Stakes divisions for two-year-old trotting fillies.

Draw The Line led the field to the quarter in :28.1 with Pisco Sour positioned second and Glamorous Hanover in third. Pizzelle raced fourth and stayed in fourth through a :57.3 stroll to the half, but soon got her cue to go from David Miller circling the final turn. Pizzelle marched forward and collared Draw The Line after three-quarters in 1:26 to then pull away in the lane and win by 1-1/4 lengths in 1:53.2. Pisco Sour slid through the inside for second, but was placed third for a pylon violation. Draw The Line moved up to the second spot and Glamorous Hanover took fourth.

“I got her early in the sale last year and we thought [she was] pretty cheap for $65,000 – she’s always shown me an absolute ton of speed and she’s natural gaited, a lot cleaner than most horses I trained,” said Beaver. “She had a little bit of a rough patch in the summer; she wasn’t trying real hard. We took a step back, turned her out for a little bit and she’s come back better and better every week since. I thought if she raced good today like she did last week we’d go to the Breeders Crown.”

Pizzelle won her second race from nine starts and has now earned $101,500 for Beaver and co-owner Donald Robinson. The daughter of Walner paid $6.06 to win.

Andy McCarthy bided his time on cover through the lane and struck within the last eighth of a mile to land Buy A Round in the winner’s circle again after a 1:53.3 mile in the second division.

Senorita Palema powered from the outermost post to lead the field through a :28 first quarter. Buy A Round sat sixth into the backstretch and made no moves while the tempo stayed tepid to a :57.1 half. To the final turn, Buy A Round flushed cover from Date Night Hanover and sat perched through three-quarters in 1:26.3, but stayed tucked behind a wall through the lane until late stretch. Buy A Round uncorked a swift rally in the last strides to win by a head over a fast-closing Sierra Girl. Senorita Palema held third and Date Night Hanover settled for fourth.

“She’s quite a filly,” said winning owner-breeder Fred Hertrich III. “Noel [Daley]’s done a great job with her. She’s average size or a little bit below average size, but when she turns for home she absolutely takes no prisoners. Luckily at this big Red Mile, we had enough room to work and sprint home and get the money.”

Buy A Round has now won five times from seven tries and has accrued $267,500. Noel Daley trains the daughter of Walner who paid $3.22 to win.

Jim Doherty Memorial winner Soiree Hanover mounted a similar stretch charge to claim a narrow victory in the third frosh filly trot division.

Paulina Hanover stole a soft middle half after posting a :27.3 opener. Warrawee Michelle, the 6-5 second choice, sat third with even-money favourite Soiree Hanover in no hurry from fifth. After a :58.4 half and three-quarters in 1:27.1, the favourites took action. Warrawee Michelle ground first over after Paulina Hanover while Soiree Hanover followed in tow and then angled wide in the last eighth to accelerate and put a neck in front of Warrawee Michelle in 1:54.1. Paulina Hanover settled for third and 98-1 shot Spy Coast took fourth.

“It’s a great feeling – I won some races in Sweden, but it’s huge to be here and win a race at The Red Mile,” said Swedish co-owner Calle Wihlborg, who experienced wins with Commander Crowe during his stateside starts but had no wins in Lexington before today. “She’s a great filly. I’m so thankful to Lucas and his team. They do a great job with this fantastic filly.”

Soiree Hanover, a filly by Walner, won her fifth race from seven starts and pushed her earnings to $436,175 for owner Snogarps Gard Inc. Lucas Wallin trains the filly, who paid $4.06 to win.

Favourites dominated in the filly trots and nearly landed the gamble in the final division until Santa Croce crept through a crevice to the pylons to upend 4-5 favourite R Melina in 1:54 at odds of 40-1.

Todd McCarthy rolled Santa Croce from post seven and brushed to lead Miss I La after a :28 first quarter. R Melina then moved from fifth and slowly advanced to clear command after a :57.2 half. Holding a mild tempo through the final turn, R Melina kept Volcanic Blue Chip parked and came under urging to re-engage after three-quarters in 1:26. R Melina fought but drifted through the stretch, opening a lane for Santa Croce to slip through and push a nose in front to the finish. Miss I La weaved through traffic to finish third and Volcanic Blue Chip settled for fourth.

“She really raced good [last week], she actually trotted a back half in [:]54 and a piece last week,” said winning trainer Jim Campbell. “She trained down like a real nice filly, but we just hit some unfortunate sickness, and bad things happened at bad times for her. But we were very happy with her last couple of races here. She’s a nice filly, she’s growing a lot and we’re probably just going to make this her last start of the year and turn her out, let her mature and get ready for next year.”

Santa Croce competes for owner Coyote Wynd Farms. The daughter of Father Patrick broke her maiden with the victory in her eighth start and has now earned $83,300. She paid $83.62 to win.

Three of the four divisions of the $348,000 International Stallion Stakes for two-year-old trotting fillies were named “The International Moni” and sponsored by the International Moni Syndicate and Hanover Shoe Farms. The other division was named “The Chapter Seven” and was presented by Blue Chip Farms.

Racing at The Red Mile will conclude for the stakes meeting on Sunday, Oct. 7 with a 15-race card headlined by the 131st edition of the $450,000 Kentucky Futurity. Sunday’s card features high-money guarantees with mandatory payouts: four $10,000-guaranteed pools for the Pick 6 (starting in Race 1), Early Pick 5 (Race 3), Late Pick 5 (Race 8) and Late Pick 4 (Race 12). The Red Mile will also feature $20,000 guarantees for the Early Pick 4 (Race 6) as well as in the Trifecta pools for the Kentucky Filly Futurity (Race 10) and the Kentucky Futurity (Race 15). Red Mile also offers an industry-low 12 per cent takeout on its Pick 5 and Pick 4.

First-race post time at The Red Mile is 1 p.m. (EDT).

(With files from The Red Mile)

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