Grand Circuit Stars Shine In Allerage Farms Opens

Clockwise from top left: Alrajaha One IT, Bythemissal, Grace Hill, Eternal Lee
Published: October 8, 2023 03:48 pm EDT

Favourites Bythemissal and Alrajah One IT both punched authoritative victories in their respective Allerage Farms divisions on the opening part of the Kentucky Futurity Day card at The Red Mile on Sunday afternoon (Oct. 8).

Sticking to the cones until he couldn’t anymore, Bythemissal launched a first-over siege and stepped home a 1:47.4 winner in the $138,500 Allerage Farms Open Pace.

Bythemissal landed in third as Linedrive Hanover and Allywag Hanover asserted for the front through a :26.2 first quarter. Allywag Hanover slid to lead the field up the backside and cruised by the half in :53.4 while driver Yannick Gingras kept Bythemissal wrangled at the pylons.

Gingras eventually let Bythemissal roll into the final turn and downed Allywag Hanover with ease by three-quarters in 1:21.2. Opening three lengths into the stretch, Bythemissal stayed strong through the lane to register a length win in 1:47.4 over Taurasi, who blasted from last through a seam at the pylons to grab second. Hemsworth N charged off a pylon trip down the center of the track for third and Linedrive Hanover settled for fourth.

Winning his 22nd race from 29 starts, Bythemissal has now banked more than $1.7 million for owners Burke Racing Stable, Eric Good, Rich Lombardo and Weaver Bruscemi. The four-year-old gelding by Downbytheseaside paid $3.02 to win.

The seven-year-old Maharajah stallion Alrajah One IT, in his comeback from a late-season injury last year, coasted to the finish a wrapped-up winner in the $135,000 Allerage Farms Open Trot in 1:50.2.

Stablemate Rattle My Cage carved out a :27.3 first quarter before facing a backstretch bid from an eager Pretender, who landed on the lead after getting stretched through a :55 half. Pretender lost stride circling the final turn, leaving Rattle My Cage on the lead as Southwind Tyrion pressed first-over with Alrajah One IT on cover.

Southwind Tyrion swooped to the lead after three-quarters in 1:23.4 and was all out through the lane while Alrajah One IT angled off cover and lifted flight without driver Dexter Dunn lifting a finger. Alrajah One IT burst home a 1-1/4-length winner over Southwind Tyrion with Rattle My Cage another six lengths behind in third and Kildare King taking fourth.

“[We’re] so happy to see him back after the injury last year,” said assistant trainer Sarah Svanstedt. “It’s always tricky to manage them on this level of racing and it's stressful to have those horses in a way. You’re always looking if something is bad or okay after the races. It was just tremendous to see him back again.”

Alrajah One IT won his second start from three this year, his fourth race from five in the last two years and his 18th from 46 starts in his career. Scuderia My Horse Inc. owns the Ake Svanstedt trainee, who has earned more than $1.9 million lifetime. He paid $2.66 to win.

Eternal Lee blasted off at 32-1 to a 1:51.2 shocker in the $57,000 Allerage Farms Mares Trot.

Driver Andy McCarthy motored the four-year-old daughter of Southwind Frank to the lead to a :28.2 first quarter and plodded through a :55.4 half and three-quarters in 1:23.2 with none willing to challenge. Given a loose lead, Eternal Lee bounded confidently for home and crossed the line three-quarter lengths better than late-closing Forceful Power. M Ms Dream, the 1-5 favourite, finished an even third off a pocket trip and Raised By Lindy took fourth.

“[I’m] not completely [shocked],” said winning trainer Chris Ryder. “I can understand. I know we were a longer shot on the board, but she’s been good lately and on her day she can go.”

Eternal Lee won for the 13th time from 37 starts and pushed her earnings to $533,082. She competes for owner Murray Ferguson Jr. The winner returned $67.56 at the betting windows.

Grace Hill continued practicing more patient tactics with her 1:49.3 performance to win the $69,500 Allerage Farms Mares Pace.

Away third through a :27.1 first quarter, Doug McNair kept Grace Hill settled as Boudoir Hanover carried the field up the backstretch to a :55.4 half and through three-quarters in 1:23. Grace Hill pounced first-over spinning for home and struck the lead mid-stretch to then hold off pocket-pouncer Kobes Gigi by three-quarter lengths. Valar Dohaeris rallied down the center of the track to snag third from Boudoir Hanover.

“There will be a big following from England and Ireland watching this race,” said Tom Hill, son of Grace Hill’s owner Tom Hill of Lancashire.  

Winning her 29th race from 59 starts, Grace Hill has banked more than $1.8 million for owner Tom Hill. The five-year-old mare by Always B Miki, off at 1-20, paid $2.10 to win.

Wiesman Farms LLC sponsored the $57,000 Helpisontheway Allerage Farms Mares Trot. The $69,500 Bulldog Hanover Allerage Farms Mares Pace was presented by Brad Grant and Jack Darling. The Tactical Landing Syndicate and Hickory Lane Horse Farm sponsored the $135,000 Tactical Landing Allerage Farms Open Trot and the $138,500 Allerage Farms Open Pace was presented by Jeff and Paula Gural and Allerage Farms.

(With files from The Red Mile; Photos by Amanda Stephens, clockwise from top left: Alrajah One IT, Bythemissal, Grace Hill, Eternal Lee)

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