Saratoga Russell romps
Some people say it's the journey not the destination that matters on a trip. There's one word for that. Baloney. In horseracing it really is all about one destination, the winner's circle. For Saratoga Russell, the destination was reached through a very educational trip. Saratoga Russell broke a half-beat slowly in a maiden special weight at Aqueduct. Under orders, jockey Eibar Coa took Saratoga Russell back early and dropped him down in on the rail to allow him to get dirt kicked in his face. Saratoga Russell cruised up along the rail before getting caught up behind horses. Jockey Eibar Coa had to tap on the brakes heading into the turn. As the pacesetters continued to scrum heading into the lane, a slight opening opened along the rail and Eibar Coa dove Russell down against the fence. Russell quickly exploded through the opening and drew off through the lane with every stride while well in hand. The final margin of victory was over seven-lengths but in reality he could have won by as much as he pleased.
Rick Violette said from Florida, "I talked to Eibar before the race. I told him that I thought this horse was much the best in the race, and I explained that I really thought this horse could be a runner. I told him that if the horse didn't beat the gate that I wanted him to give this horse as much of an education as possible. I wanted this to be the same thing we did with Dream Rush last winter in Florida, but this turned out a little better. However, on the turn I really began to question my decision-making. I didn't want him to run the same race as last time and win but stagger home. Today, he came home in 11.4. That's powerful. We want to win every race, but a maiden race in the winter in New York is not my ultimate goal for this horse. The upside with this colt is very very big. We're off to Florida to fry bigger fish now."
Saratoga Russell will now head to Florida. A two-year-old son of Trippi, Saratoga Russell earned $31,200 for the win. We will consider numerous options including the Sunshine Millions and Swale Stakes as possible next starts.