Maker Breaks Turfway Record for Most Wins in a Day
FLORENCE, Ky., Sept. 24, 2011 – Hansen broke from the outside in the $100,000 Bluegrass Cat Kentucky Cup Juvenile at Turfway Park Saturday and blew away his seven rivals with every step thereafter, cruising effortlessly home to win by 13 1/4 lengths.
The dramatic win confirmed trainer Mike Maker's belief that this nearly white Tapit colt will take him to the Breeders’ Cup World Championships in November.
"It's nice when you get a young horse and he delivers," said Maker. "I'm very excited. We were thinking Breeders' Cup with this colt before they ran this race today. I ran him here instead of at Keeneland because I worried that if we didn’t get in (a race) at Keeneland, we might be in a little trouble. I'm not going to run him back at Keeneland now. I think this race today will get us in to the Breeders' Cup. We’ll point to the dirt, not the turf."
The race was the third of five wins on the card for Maker, who now holds the Turfway record for most wins by a trainer in a single day. He also won the fourth race with Starsilhouette, the fifth race with Tapanna, the Speightstown Kentucky Cup Sprint (G3) with Matthewsburg, and the Distorted Humor Kentucky Cup Distaff (G3) with La Gran Bailadora.
The Bluegrass Cat Kentucky Cup Juvenile belonged to Hansen from the get-go. He was out of the gate first from post eight and commanded the pace in :23.83 for the quarter, :46.91 for the half mile, 1:11.48 for six furlongs, and 1:38.68 for the mile before finishing the 1 1/16-mile course in 1:45.83. Fine was second, 1 1/2 lengths ahead of Downtown Driggs in third.
"They came up to me a little early," said winning jockey Victor Lebron. "I got him to relax and he cleared off again. He's a push-button horse. I could put him anywhere if I wanted to."
The Bluegrass Cat Kentucky Cup Juvenile was Hansen’s second start. The colt broke his maiden at first asking Sept. 9, leading gate to wire to win a maiden special sprint at Turfway by 12 1/4 lengths.
"He's one of the best horses I've ever ridden," continued Lebron, who has been aboard for both of Hansen's double-digit victories. "The way he ran last time, he took to the front and relaxed. He actually ran off. I couldn't pull him up until the five-eighths pole. That told me he could go long—all day if you let him. Hopefully he's my (Kentucky) Derby horse."
Fourth and following in Saturday's Juvenile were Space Traveler, Pryce's Posse, Hollywood Script, My Newfound Saint, and Future.
Hansen was the odds-on 1-2 favorite and returned $3, $2.40, and $2.40.
Out of the Sir Cat mare Stormy Sunday, Hansen has now earned $73,305 for owner Kendall Hansen, a Northern Kentucky physician.