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A Cup For DePinto? We Will See


Published: June 24, 2010 1:35 pm ET

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All Speed Hanover. One More Laugh. Rock N Roll Heaven. Sportswriter. These are the colts that have received all of the attention heading into Saturday's $1.5 million final of the Pepsi North America Cup. We Will See was a 12-1 shot when he won his elimination last week, and to hear trainer Cosmo 'Sam' DePinto talk about his charge heading into the final, you can just tell that he knows he has as good a chance as anyone.

While speaking with Trot Insider after Tuesday's NA Cup post position draw at Mohawk Racetrack, DePinto did not come across as an outsider at all, but as a participant with a legitimate shot in what looks like it could be a 'Cup' for the ages.

And although DePinto's operation doesn't make huge splashes at the yearling sales or crank out Cup contenders year after year, he has shown in the past that he is more than astute at having his charges on their game when the chips are down. Case and point being the 2003 Cup, a race in which the top five finishers were within one and three-quarter lengths of each other. DePinto had Artesian in the race, who would end up finishing in a dead-heat for second, just a half-length back of the hard-closing winner, Yankee Cruiser.

2003 NA Cup - Yankee Cruiser - 1:49.3

"Yes, I do know what it takes to compete at this level and be here," said DePinto, who takes the 'quality over quantity' approach with his current five-horse stable. "I'm very honoured because for a lot of guys it's once in a lifetime, and I've been able to come here twice. I'm a small stable and most of the horses that I get to train I purchase with partners or sometimes by myself, so it takes a lot of money, a lot of time, a lot of patience, and a lot of luck."

We Will See didn't need luck when he lined up for his Cup elim. After leaving from the rail with driver Brett Miller in tow, the son of Western Hanover was on his game in the garden spot through a hot three-quarters of a mile which was put up in 1:21.1. The colt swelled up at the top of the lane, and that is when Miller pulled him off the wood. Forced to go out close to four-wide, We Will See passed a tough first-up colt (One More Laugh) and hauled down the pace-setting Piece Of The Rock, who had been rolling on the front.

2010 NA Cup Elims - We Will See - 1:49

"I was very pleased with the way that Brett drove the horse," DePinto told Trot Insider. "I give a lot of credit to him. I told Brett going into the race that five-eighths of the race was up to him, and that the other three-eighths was up to the horse. I told him that the horse would come for the last three-eighths of the mile, and that if he was in position he was going to be knocking on their (the other horses') doors at the wire. He's a very aggressive colt on the end, where he needs to be."

When it comes to the $1.5 million Cup final, Miller and DePinto have opted to have We Will See start from Post 1 once again. The pair was able to select their starting spot courtesy of their elim win. The connections of fellow elim winners Rock N Roll Heaven and All Speed Hanover opted for Post 3 and 4, respectively.

"I see a lot of speed in the race, and my horse can leave the gate," DePinto said. "I picture him getting positioned pretty good, near the front somewhere. I see us stalking and getting out, hopefully, in the lane and getting a good piece of it if not all of it. If they battle it out good, and draw some strong fractions, we've got a heck of a shot of taking the whole prize.

"It's anybody's race. There's no big standout like Somebeachsomewhere. I feel really confident about this, and the thing that I really feel good about is that Brett is driving him again. He knows the colt and I think that he is going to be even better going into this race. The colt is going to be 100%. My driver, mentally, is 110%, so I feel great going into this."

Fully realizing that once the gate swings away plans tend to change sometimes, DePinto told Trot Insider that if the situation dictates, his driver may put We Will See on the front. At that point it will be all 'Miller Time.'

"He's smart and he's got a great set of hands," DePinto said about Miller, who has driven his mounts to more than 5,100 victories through the course of his career. "I mean he can get a lot out of a horse. My colt, as I said, is a little on the lazy side. Brett knows how to get him keyed up a little bit to where you want to be in the mile. He'll position the horse right, and maybe that will be on the front if need be. If he thinks he can do it, I'm sure he'll be there. So, it's up to Brett, I leave things up to him. When I hand him over the lines, it's his turn to earn the 5%, so hopefully he'll get it all."

Although We Will See captured his elim and has an inside starting spot, he has been assessed as the 10-1 fifth choice on the morning line.

To view the recap of the post position draw, click here.

Mohawk's 13-dash Saturday program has a first-race post time of 7:10 p.m. Post time for the 27th edition of the Cup (Race 7), the richest pacing event in the world, is 9:40 p.m., The Score Television Network will air a special one and one-half hour telecast nationally from 8:30 p.m. - 10:00 p.m. (ET).

To view free, printable program pages for Mohawk's Saturday card courtesy of TrackIT, click here.

To view SC's regular entries page for NA Cup night, click here.

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