Tag Archives: Michigan Sire Stakes

Meadow Vespers voted Michigan’s Thoroughbred of the Decade

Four-time Sire Stakes winner Meadow Vespers took 39.76% of the vote to earn Michigan's Thoroughbred of the Decade title.

The readers of The Michigan-Bred Claimer have voted Meadow Vespers Michigan’s Thoroughbred of the Decade, from 2000-2010.

The nine-year-old Meadow Prayer gelding drew 33 of 83 total votes (39.76%) to hold off second place finisher Tenpins for the top spot. Full results from the poll can be found at the end of the post.

Meadow Vespers is campaigned by owner John Mack and trainer Richard Rettele. He was bred in Michigan by James Arnold, Marcia Arnold and Deb Miley.

One of his barn’s stars for over a half decade, Rettele listed Meadow Vespers among the best horses he has trained.

“He’s sound, tough and has longevity,” Rettele said. “He’s good to train and goes to race. That’s the kind you need.”

Meadow Vespers won 13 of 42 career starts for earnings of $489,066. Five of those victories came in stakes company, along with nine other stakes placings. He is Michigan’s ninth leading male by lifetime earnings.

Meadow Vespers’ racing career often mirrored his running style – A slow build-up to a big finish.

The gelding’s late kick often led to minor awards in early-season stakes races, but became dialed in as the season, and the race distances, grew longer. Prior to the 2009 season, Meadow Vespers’ only stakes wins came in the longest blacktype contests at the end of Michigan’s racing calendar, the Sire Stakes.

After one start as a two-year-old, Meadow Vespers’ run of Sire Stakes victories began in 2005, when he won the three-year-old males division of the race at Great Lakes Downs. That victory, along with on-the-board finishes in the Dowling and Spartan Stakes, helped secure his division’s title for the year.

Meadow Vespers stepped up into older competition the next year and won that division’s race twice before Great Lakes Downs was closed in 2007. However, year-end awards eluded him both times.

In 2008, Meadow Vespers showed he could translate his success on GLD’s five-furlong track to a mile oval with an award-winning inaugural campaign at Pinnacle Race Course. His fourth straight Sire Stakes triumph, and three other in-the-money stakes efforts, helped wrap up Michigan’s older male title.

Meadow Vespers had another solid year in 2009 and even notched his first non-Sire Stakes blacktype win; a rallying half-length score in the Michigan Breeders’ Cup Handicap at Pinnacle. However, his signature late move could not overcome traffic problems in the Sire Stakes, and his streak was snapped with a fifth place finish.

Despite showing some flashes in 2010, including a half length runner-up finish in the Frontier Handicap and a valiant effort against graded stakes-level competition in a Hoosier Park allowance, Meadow Vespers failed to find his timing last year and again finished off the board in the Sire Stakes.

Most horses spend their entire careers trying to hit in just one big spot, and most never get there. Meadow Vespers made hitting in the big spot an annual event. In an industry where many horses that show success are quickly retired, even geldings, there is something to be said for a horse that manages to compete at a consistent stakes level over a seven-year racing career.

Thanks to his longevity, lethal closing kick and status as Michigan’s alpha male for the latter half of the 2000s, Meadow Vespers is Michigan’s Thoroughbred of the Decade.

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Here are the full results for Michigan’s Thoroughbred of the Decade poll. Thanks to everyone who voted and commented on the poll, and to everyone who campaigned the horses that showed off the best Michigan has to offer.

To view the original post with information on each entry, click here.

TOTAL: 83 Votes

1. Meadow Vespers – 33 Votes (39.76%)
2. Tenpins – 23 Votes (27.71%)
3. Secret Romeo – 8 Votes (9.64%)
4. Cashier’s Dream – 5 Votes (6.02%)
5. Valley Loot – 4 Votes (4.82%)
6. Born To Dance – 3 Votes (3.61%)
T7. Rockem Sockem – 2 Votes (2.41%)
T7. Weatherstorm – 2 Votes (2.41%)
T9. Sefa’s Rose – 1 Vote (1.2%)
T9. That Gift – 1 Vote (1.2%)
T9. Other (Starlit Hour) – 1 Vote (1.2%)

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Meadow Wise wins older males Sire Stakes

Meadow Wise staked his claim to Michigan’s older male of the year title with a dominant victory in his division of Saturday’s $50,000 Michigan Sire Stakes at Pinnacle Race Course.

The four-year-old Meadow Prayer gelding angled in at the start, but quickly corrected his course and shot to the front. He was soon passed by Hot Chili on the outside, followed closely by Red Bow Tie as they headed down the stretch. The trio came back to even terms heading into the first turn and became a duo when Hot Chili and Meadow Wise sped off to battle their way into the backstretch. Hot Chili led by a half length over Meadow Wise as they made their way past the barns with Red Bow Tie and Romeo Again less than a length behind him. As they made their way into the final turn, Hot Chili was swallowed up by Meadow Wise on the rail and Romeo Again on the outside.

The lead pair of Meadow Wise and Romeo Again battled neck-and-neck throughout the turn, with Hot Chili trying to regain position three wide. Meadow Wise emerged at the top of the stretch with a length and a half lead and ran down the shadow of the rail to win by 3 1/4 lengths under jockey Angel Stanley. Romeo Again battled Hot Chili for second place, and finished a length ahead of his foe.

Meadow Wise completed the mile and one eighth race in 1:54.76 on fast dirt. He left the gates as the favorite among the betting public at odds of 1.50-to-one.

Meadow Wise was bred in Michigan by James Arnold, Marcia Arnold and Deb Miley. He is owned by Mast Thoroughbreds LLC and trained by Robert Gorham. With the win, his second in stakes competition, Meadow Wise improved his lifetime record to six wins from 20 starts for earnings of $139,296.

For an Equibase chart of the race, click here.

1 – Meadow Wise (Angel Stalney) 5.00 / 3.40 / 3.40
5 – Romeo Again (Federico Mata) 2.80 / 2.40
7 – Hot Chili (Ricardo Barrios) 4.20

One Mile and One Eighth
Time: 1:54.76

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Valley Loot regains form in older females Sire Stakes

After a year with more downs than ups, Valley Loot reminded fans why she is the state’s defending three-time horse of the year with a hard-fought win in Saturday’s $50,000 Michigan Sire Stakes for older fillies and mares, an astounding fourth straight victory for the mare in the series of races.

The six-year-old Demaloot Demashoot mare broke alertly and battled Guns And Giggles for the lead coming out the gate. She settled back to third behind Guns And Giggles and She Could Be Good as the field made its first pass under the wire. Guns And Giggles stayed a couple paths off the rail down the straightaway and entered the first turn with a length advantage. The top three were each separated by about a length heading into the backstretch in the same order as they came into the turn. The two trailers began to draw closer to Guns And Giggles on the backetretch, with Valley Loot making the boldest bid three wide.

As the field entered the final turn, Valley Loot had drawn even with Guns And Giggles, while Baba Booyah moved up from the second flight to challenge She Could Be Good for third. Valley Loot quickly disposed of the pacesetter, but was then faced with a rapidly gaining Baba Booyah on her outside. The defending champion led her challenger by a half length at the top of the stretch, and under heavy urging by jockey Federico Mata, began to pull away. Baba Booyah attempted to re-rally at the sixteenth pole but could not reach the winner before the wire.

Valley Loot finished a half length ahead of Baba Booyah for her first win of 2010. Secret Candy improved her position late to finish third, five lengths behind the runner-up.

Valley Loot completed the mile and one eighth race in 1:56.23 over a fast dirt surface. She was the field’s second choice at odds of 2.40-to-one.

Bred in Michigan by Marilyn McMaster, Valley Loot is owned by Lisa Campbell and trained by Ronald Allen, Sr.. Both Campbell and jockey Mata finished the day with three wins in the six Sire Stakes races.

With her fourth Sire Stakes win in five starts in the series, Valley Loot improved her career record to 14 wins from 32 starts. Her career earnings now total $584,885.

For an Equibase chart of the race, click here.

1 – Valley Loot (Federico Mata) 6.80 / 3.80 / 2.40
7 – Baba Booyah (Jeffrey Skerrett) 5.00 / 3.40
8 – Secret Candy (Ronald Allen, Jr.) 6.20

One Mile and One Eighth
Time: 1:56.23

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Meadow Magic rallies in three-year-old males Sire Stakes

Meadow Magic became the first horse to win multiple stakes races during Pinnacle Race Course’s 2010 meet in Saturday’s $50,000 Michigan Sire Stakes for three-year-old colts and geldings.

The Meadow Prayer gelding broke from the outside gate and ran in fourth behind leader Secrets Only as the field made its first pass by the finish line. Secrets Only ran well off the rail heading into the first turn with a length advantage over Prince Of Paulie. The leader continued to stay off the rail and added an additional half length to his lead heading into the backstretch. Prince of Paulie continued to chase the leader across the straightaway, two lengths ahead of Meadow Magic in third. Secrets Only entered the final turn two lengths in front.

The margins remained unchanged at the top of the stretch, but the pack began to reel in the leader as they passed the eighth pole. Meadow Magic assumed the lead on the outside with Prince Of Paulie coming along between the leader and a fading Secrets Only. Under steady urging from jockey Tommy Molina, Meadow Magic crossed the finish line for a 3 1/2 length victory. A late-moving Power Of Titus edged out Prince Of Paulie by a head for the runner-up spot.

Meadow Magic crossed the wire in the mile and one sixteenth race in 1:48.92 over a fast dirt surface. He was the field’s second choice at 1.50-to-0ne.

A Michigan-bred from the farm of Marilyn McMaster, Meadow Magic was sent to the post by trainer James Jackson for owners Laura Jackson and Red Riding Hood Stables LLC. The Sire Stakes was his fourth win from eleven starts and his second stakes score. With the win, his career earnings now total $85,860.

For an Equibase chart of the race, click here.

7 – Meadow Magic (Tommy Molina) 5.00 / 2.40 / 2.80
1 – Power Of Titus (Octavio Bernal) 2.40 / 2.10
5 – Prince Of Paulie (Ronald Allen, Jr.) 2.80

One Mile and One Sixteenth
Time: 1:48.92

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Charlies Fire outlasts rivals in soph fillies Sire Stakes

Charlies Fire kept a good day going for owner Lisa Campbell and jockey Federico Mata with a front-running score in the three-year-old fillies division of Saturday’s $50,000 Michigan Sire Stakes at Pinnacle Race Course.

The Fire Blitz filly shot to the front on the rail and battled with Cute Creation and De La Crem for the lead as the field passed under the wire for the first time. Charlies Fire led by a length heading into the first turn with Cute Creation on her outside hip, but the leader quickly put several lengths between herself and her foe through the bend. The margin between first and second was three lengths as the field entered the backstretch.

Charlies Fire kept a multiple length cushion between herself and the rest of the pack across the backstretch that dwindled to about a length and a half heading into the final turn. Cute Creation and Fully Exposed continued to chase Charlies Fire through the bend, while Run with Rachel was in pursuit on the rail. Charlies Fire was flanked on the hips by Run With Rachel on the inside and Cute Creation on the outside at the top of the stretch, but responded to urging by jockey Federico Mata and repelled her challengers. She continued to power down the stretch under Mata’s steady right hand whip, as Run With Rachel tried in vain to make up the distance.

Charlies Fire won the Sire Stakes by a length and a half. Run With Rachel finished second, 5 3/4 lengths ahead of Cute Creation.

The final time for the mile and one sixteenth race was 1:49.58 over a fast dirt track. She was the race’s post time favorite at odds of 1.90-to-one.

Charlies Fire was bred in Michigan Ronald Allen, Sr. and Felica Allen. She is owned by Lisa Campbell and trained by Patrick White.

The Sire Stakes was Charlies Fire’s third win from four starts, and her first blacktype score. Her lifetime earnings now total $46,190.

For an Equibase chart of the race, click here.

1 – Charlies Fire (Federico Mata) 5.80 / 5.40 / 3.00
5 – Run with Rachel (Ricardo Barrios) 9.00 / 4.00
4 – Cute Creation (Jorge Collazo, Jr.) 4.20

One Mile and One Sixteenth
Time:  1:49.58

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Noequal draws off in juvenile males Sire Stakes

Last year’s Michigan Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association Yearling Sale topper Noequal delivered on his high bid status with a driving win in Saturday’s $50,000 Michigan Sire Stakes for two-year-old colts and geldings.

The Equality gelding was forwardly placed out of the gate and held a slim margin between rivals in the race’s early goings. As the field made its way across the backstretch, Noequal led by a half length over Pooling Factor on the inside and Buy The Law and Gainon not far behind on the outside. Pooling Factor drew even with Noequal heading into the turn and took a slim lead as they entered the bend. The pair dueled throughout the turn, and was pressured from behind by post time favorite Duncan.

Noequal came back to even terms with Pooling Factor at the top of the stretch and battled with that rival until pulling away at the eighth pole. He continued to carry on past his foe and drove to the wire under left-handed urging from jockey Federico Mata to win by 3 1/4 lengths. Duncan overcame an awkward start to finish second, a neck ahead of Pooling Factor.

Noequal completed the six furlong race in 1:14.83 over a fast dirt surface. He was the betting public’s second choice at odds of 2.30-to-one.

Bred in Michigan by Opportunity Lane, Noequal was saddled by Ronald Allen, Sr. for owner Daniel McCarthy. The Sire Stakes was the gelding’s first victory from three career starts for earnings of $37,400.

For an Equibase chart of the race, click here.

3 – Noequal (Federico Mata) 6.60 / 3.40 / 3.00
2 – Duncan (Tommy Molina) 6.20 / 5.20
1 – Pooling Factor (Ronald Allen, Jr.) 7.60

Six Furlongs
Time: 1:14.83

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This Cats On Fire wires juvenile fillies Sire Stakes

This Cats On Fire took straight to the front and never surrendered the lead to win Saturday’s $50,000 juvenile fillies division of the Michigan Sire Stakes at Pinnacle Race Course.

The two-year-old Fire Blitz filly was bumped coming out of the gate, but was quickly hustled to the lead on the outside. She led by a length and a half ahead of Harlan Trace and Evil Secret across the backstretch as she angled in closer to the rail. Harlan Trace left Evil Secret behind heading into the turn and chased the leader on her outside hip throughout the bend.

This Cats On Fire had a length on Harlan Trace exiting the turn, as post time favorite Paris Prayer began her charge from the back of the pack. The leader distanced herself from her rival, who was herself facing a charge down the middle of the track from Paris Prayer. However, neither foe could match This Cats On Fire’s momentum, as she crossed the wire 2 1/4 lengths in front. Paris Prayer got up for second, a neck ahead of Harlan Trace.

This Cats On Fire stopped the clock for the six furlong race in 1:13.53 on a fast dirt surface under jockey Ronald Allen, Jr.. She went off as the field’s second choice at odds of two-to-one.

Homebred in Michigan by Lisa Campbell and Campbell Stable, This Cats On Fire was saddled by Patrick White. Her career record now stands at two wins from three starts, with one score in stakes company, for earnings of $42,414.

For an Equibase chart of the race, click here.

8 – This Cats On Fire (Ronald Allen, Jr.) 6.00 / 3.00 / 2.40
2 – Paris Prayer (Tommy Molina) 2.40 / 2.40
4 – Harlan Trace (Angel Stanley) 3.00

Six Furlongs
Time: 1:13.53

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