Coach Teri Luneack and her star sprinter Welder at Ra-Max Farms in Claremore, Okla.
The biggest indication that this may be the toughest $ 150,000 David M. Vance Stakes in history on Sunday is that Remington Park’s most victorious horse, Welder, was named the 7- favorite. 2 seconds in the race.
David M. Vance’s stakes roll out like the 10th race on Sunday just before the $ 400,000 Oklahoma Derby in 3rd year, the culmination of an eight-stakes card.
It makes you wonder what a horse that has won 16 times at Remington Park and twice in the David M. Vance Stakes has to do to be the favorite in the race. Upon closer examination, it becomes clear why he is behind 3-1 favorites Greeley and Ben.
First up, Greeley and Ben beat Welder this summer at Prairie Meadows, Iowa in an open allowance race, sprinting 6 stages, the same distance they will run on Sunday. Greeley and Ben won this race by two lengths while Welder finished third, a neck behind the runner-up. The counterpoint to this argument is that Welder has lost to horses in Iowa before, but those same horses came to Remington Park and couldn’t sniff Welder here, losing to him.
Second, Greeley and Ben have won eight races in a row, including a stakes-caliber open allocation race at Remington Park on September 4 when he completed 6 stages in 1: 08.88. Admittedly, a summer storm hit this 7-year-old gelding which won here, which made the track extremely fast. It was still the best time of the competition over this distance. Welder won an allowance race at Remington to put his name in the record books on August 27, spanning 6 stages in 1: 10.47, but he did so easily without much stress from jockey David Cabrera. Cabrera rode both horses to victory at Remington this fall and chose to ride Welder in this Sunday’s stakes race.
What makes this race even more interesting is a quote from Greeley and Ben’s trainer before the race started at Remington. Welder hadn’t won in 2021 until he broke Remington’s record in August.
“The welder is a shell of himself,” said Broberg, who conditions Greeley and Ben for End Zone Athletics in Mansfield, Texas. He backed down on that quote somewhat after watching Welder beat Nitrous, winner of the $ 125,000 Thanksgiving Classic at Fair Grounds, in his historic win.
Welder trainer Teri Luneack, who conditions Remington’s historic 8-year-old gray gelding for owner Ra-Max Farms (Clayton Rash) of Claremore, Okla., Took to the high road and did not respond to this quote special, but she always likes to talk about a welder.
“If he sets more records, it’s good for him,” Luneack said. “If he doesn’t, that’s good for him too. I don’t feel like the horse owes me or owes us anything. I think he has nothing more to prove. You have to remember that 99.9% of horses will not run as a welder. All the victories he gives us are a blessing. There are a million ways to lose a race and there is a way to win and all the stars have to line up.
The stars lined up for Welder 27 times in his career in 42 races for an income of $ 1,246,231. Greeley and Ben can’t touch it in this category. He has 15 wins out of 25 starts with $ 364,398. Welder has won 15 of 20 starts at Remington while Greeley and Ben will only make their second start here.
Is it really possible that these two are coming close to their 3-1 and 7-2 odds? This is good because this issue is as deep as it could be. The third favorite is Nitrous (4-1) and he could enjoy his first run as he came off a seven-month vacation. If he’s more fit and ready for coach Steve Asmussen’s barn, he could close that 1-3 / 4-length gap in his second-place finish against Welder on August 27.
Empire of Gold is next at 6-1 in the morning line. He finished fourth in the $ 2 million Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Sprint at Keeneland in 2020. Three horses at 8-1 certainly deserve recognition and consideration – Long Range Toddy, winner of the $ 400,000 Springboard Mile. Remington Park in 2018 and participating in the Kentucky Derby that year; Mr. Money Bags, who ran two lengths behind Nitrous in the Thanksgiving Stakes at Fair Grounds, and Share the Upside, who finished ahead of Welder at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs, Ark., But then came to Remington Park and n couldn’t beat him. It is the second entrance to the Asmussen barn.
Here is the field for this year’s David M. Vance Stakes with position, horse, jockey, trainer and odds:
- Golden Empire, Sasha Risenhoover, Terry Eoff, 6-1
- Bybee, Leandro Gonçalves, Eduardo Caramori, 15-1
- Nitrous, Ricardo Santana, Jr., Steve Asmussen, 4-1
- Toddy Long Reach, Jon Court, Dallas Stewart, 8-1
- Welder, David Cabrera, Teri Luneack, 7-2
- Mr. Money Bags, Richard Eramia, Jaylan Clary, 8-1
- It makes sense, Jose Alvarez, Shawn Davis, 15-1
- Greeley and Ben, Joe Talamo, Karl Broberg, 3-1
- Share the Benefits, Stewart Elliott, Steve Asmussen, 8-1
The Vance must leave the starting grid at 19:37. The other stakes races on the derby program:
Race 4 – $ 75,000 Kip Deville Stakes, 2 years old, six stages
Race 6 – $ 50,000 EL Gaylord Memorial, 2-year-old fillies, 6-1 / 2 stages
Race 7 – $ 50,000 Flashy Lady Stakes, fillies and mares, 3 years and over, six stages
Race 8 – 3rd year, $ 200,000 Remington Park Oaks, 3 year old fillies, 1-1 / 16 miles
Race 9 – $ 75,000 Memorial Ricks, fillies and mares, 3 years and over, 1-1 / 16 miles (grass)
Race 11 – 3rd year, $ 400,000 Oklahoma Derby, 3 years old, 1-1 / 8 miles
Race 12 – $ 100,000 Remington Green, 3+, 1-1 / 8 miles (grass)
The races continue this week with a schedule from Thursday to Sunday. It is the only Sunday race day of the competition, serving as Oklahoma Derby Day. Post time is 3:00 p.m. on September 26, while all other race nights begin at 7:07 p.m. All times are central.
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