Court Vision Returns to Synthetic
Friday, March 06, 2009
At long last, Court Vision returns to synthetic
By Byron King
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Since Oct. 6, 2007, the day Court Vision powered his way to a 1 3/4-length maiden score over Keeneland's Polytrack, I have awaited the opportunity to bet him in another race on a synthetic surface.
A mere 518 days later, that chance comes in Saturday's $1 million Santa Anita Handicap over the synthetic Pro-Ride surface in Southern California.
I will forgive his connections - trainer Bill Mott and owners WinStar Farm and IEAH Stables - for the long wait. Since his victory over Polytrack, he has grossed more than $1 million in 11 subsequent starts by racing in some of the nation's most prestigious dirt and turf races.
Court Vision won the Grade 3 Iroquois and the Grade 2 Remsen on dirt at 2, and capped off his 3-year-old year in 2008 with triumphs on turf in the Grade 2 Jamaica and Grade 1 Hollywood Derby.
Even his one start as a 4-year-old, a close third behind Kip Deville in the Grade 1 Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap, was a solid performance.
Yet as good as those races were, better could be on the way over a synthetic track.
The reason? Synthetic racing, particularly at high stakes levels, often rewards horses with acceleration - those that can outquicken their opponents. That was evident during the Breeders' Cup last fall at Santa Anita when horses such as Ventura, Stardom Bound, Midnight Lute, and Raven's Pass overwhelmed the opposition with sudden, off-the-pace surges.
Court Vision is not a horse lacking acceleration. This is a horse that passed the entire field in the stretch run of the 1 1/4-mile Hollywood Derby, finishing his final quarter-mile in less than 23 seconds.
Similarly, in winning the Iroquois and Remsen as a 2-year-old, he utilized his turn of foot to prevail after encountering traffic problems.
Putting aside style, his winning time from his victory on Polytrack in the fall of 2007 suggests a bright future on synthetics. Racing from behind a slow pace, he raced 1 1/16 miles in 1:45.75 - earning an 83 Beyer Speed Figure, the second highest winning Beyer from 12 juvenile route races contested over Polytrack during that meet. Only Wicked Style ran faster, earning an 88 Beyer, in taking the Grade 1 Breeders' Futurity that year.
Court Vision has obviously matured and made strides since that race - and at 6-1 on the morning line for the Big Cap, he is expected to be a fair price.

 
Strong OBS 2yo numbers for Hold Me Back
Hold Me Back

Strong OBS 2yo numbers for Hold Me Back

Hold Me Back, whose first foals are 3-year-olds of 2015, had a pair of 2-year-old fillies bring six figures during Thursday’s third session of the April 21-24 OBS Spring Sale...

[read more]

Consumer Credit battles to victory in Memories of Silver S.
More Than Ready

Consumer Credit battles to victory in Memories of Silver S.

More Than Ready’s Grade 3 winner Consumer Credit notched her third career stakes win in the $100,000 Memories of Silver S. at Aqueduct...

[read more]

Drosselmeyer juvenile brings $140,000 at OBS

Drosselmeyer juvenile brings $140,000 at OBS

After working a spectacular quarter in :21.1 on April 13th, a colt from the first crop by Drosselmeyer sold for $140,000 on April 21st, opening day of the OBS Spring Sale...

[read more]

More Than Ready sires top filly opening day at OBS

More Than Ready sires top filly opening day at OBS

A lovely daughter of More Than Ready achieved the highest price for a filly on Day One of the OBS Spring Sale, selling for $250,000 midway through the session...

[read more]

Pioneerof the Nile sires #2 Juvenile Day One at OBS

Pioneerof the Nile sires #2 Juvenile Day One at OBS

Pioneerof the Nile sired the second high-priced juvenile opening day at the OBS Spring Sale, when hip 273 sold for $270,000...

[read more]

WinStar acquires minority interest in Upstart

WinStar acquires minority interest in Upstart

WinStar Farm has acquired a minority interest in Kentucky Derby (G1) contender Upstart, winner of the Holy Bull S. (G2) and runner-up in the Florida Derby (G1) and Fountain of Youth S. (G2) this winter at Gulfstream...

[read more]

Dramedy provides huge thrill in Elkhorn S. (G2)
Distorted Humor

Dramedy provides huge thrill in Elkhorn S. (G2)

Distorted Humor’s Dramedy put away My Afleet following an early duel and then held off a furious charge from several challengers in deep stretch to win the $250,000 Elkhorn S. (G2)...

[read more]

Stonestreet & WinStar launch Derby website for Carpe Diem

Stonestreet & WinStar launch Derby website for Carpe Diem

Barbara Banke’s Stonestreet Stables and Kenny & Lisa Troutt’s WinStar Farm have launched the official website for their Kentucky Derby contender Carpe Diem...

[read more]

American Pharoah blitzes foes in Arkansas Derby (G1)
Pioneerof the Nile

American Pharoah blitzes foes in Arkansas Derby (G1)

The superlatives flowed following American Pharoah’s incredible win in Saturday’s $1 million Arkansas Derby (G1) as the son of Pioneerof the Nile rolled by some eight lengths...

[read more]

House Rules rallies to take Grade 3 Top Flight Handicap
Distorted Humor

House Rules rallies to take Grade 3 Top Flight Handicap

House Rules, a 4-year-old daughter of Distorted Humor, prevailed in a three-horse photo to score victory in the $200,000 Top Flight H. (G3)...

[read more]