Alwaysmining Has Final Breeze Saturday for $125,000 Federico Tesio

Alwaysmining Has Final Breeze Saturday for $125,000 Federico Tesio

Still Dreaming, Half-Brother to Nyquist, Captures Saturday Feature
Rainbow 6, Late Pick 5, Super Hi-5 Carryovers for Sunday Card

LAUREL, MD – Runnymede Racing’s multiple stakes winner Alwaysmining went a half-mile in 49 seconds Saturday morning at the Fair Hill Training Center in Elkton, Md. in his final tuneup for the $125,000 Xpressbet Federico Tesio Saturday, April 20 at Laurel Park.

The work, third-fastest of 19 horses, was the third for the gelded Maryland-bred son of Grade 1 winner Stay Thirsty since running his win streak to five races, the last four in stakes, in the March 16 Private Terms at Laurel.

On April 6, Kelly Rubley-trained Alwaysmining went five furlongs in a bullet 1:00. Both breezes came over Fair Hill’s all-weather surface.

Alwaysmining will be stretching out to 1 1/8 miles for the first time in the Tesio, which for the fourth straight year is a ‘Win and In’ race for Triple Crown-nominated horses to the 144th Preakness (G1) May 18 at legendary Pimlico Race Course. The Private Terms, won by 6 ¾ lengths in front-running fashion, marked his two-turn debut.

“He’s such a nice horse; he just keeps on trying,” Runnymede racing manager Joe Cassidy said. “We’re very excited about going to the Tesio. It’s a great race with a great history, and we’re looking forward to being there.”

Fellow Fair Hill-based trainer Graham Motion, winner of the 2011 Kentucky Derby (G1) and 2013 Dubai World Cup (G1) with Animal Kingdom and whose 2008 Tesio winner, Icabad Crane, would go on to run third in the Preakness, has been impressed with Alwaysmining.

The Motion-trained Still Dreaming, a half-brother to 2016 Derby and Florida Derby (G1) winner Nyquist, ran fifth behind Alwaysmining in the Private Terms before coming back to capture Saturday’s featured allowance at Laurel.

“That horse is very good. Kelly has done a great job with him,” Motion said. “She’s been very conservative, picked her spots with him very well. It’s going to take a really good horse to step up and beat him. I think you’re probably going to see him in the Preakness, I would imagine.”

The Tesio is one of seven stakes worth $750,000 in purses on the Spring Stakes Spectacular program April 20, including the $125,000 Weber City Miss for 3-year-old fillies, a ‘Win and In’ event for the 95th Black-Eyed Susan (G2) May 17 at Pimlico.

Still Dreaming, Half to Nyquist, Captures Saturday Feature

West Point Thoroughbreds and Chris Larsen’s 3-year-old Still Dreaming came with a steady drive on the far outside and got his nose down on the wire to capture Saturday’s featured fifth race.

Getting a class and distance break after finishing off the board in back-to-back stakes, Still Dreaming ($8.20) ran seven furlongs in 1:24.04 over a fast main track under 2018 Eclipse Award-winning apprentice Weston Hamilton to edge Bozzini in a head-bob. Long shot pacesetter Pretty Good Year held third, with 6-5 favorite Sunman a non-threatening fifth after acting up in the starting gate.

Hamilton positioned Still Dreaming between horses in third as Pretty Good Year went a quarter-mile in 23.34 seconds and a half in 46.18, stalked by Bozzini. Pretty Good Year held firm to the lead on the rail past the eighth pole until Bozzini and Still Dreaming edged by inside the sixteenth pole.

It was the first win for the Motion-trained Still Dreaming since the chestnut Flatter colt out of the Forestry mare Seeking Gabrielle broke his maiden Jan. 1. From there he was seventh in the Sam F. Davis (G3) at Tampa Bay Downs and most recently fifth in the Private Terms March 16 at Laurel.

Still Dreaming had not sprinted since going six furlongs in his career debut at Laurel last November. After consulting with racing manager Erin Birkenhauer, the daughter of West Point founder and CEO Terry Finley, they decided to take a step back after three straight starts at a mile or more.

“To be honest, I’ve really liked this horse. I know I threw him into some tough spots, but that’s the kind of horse I thought he was,” Motion said. “After he was disappointing last time, Erin and I talked about it and we just thought that maybe shortening him up might be the key. This race was a good opportunity to do that, and it worked out. I give her credit for coming up with the idea.”

Motion was unsure where Still Dreaming where or when Still Dreaming would run back, but hinted it would remain at shorter distances.

“I think it would probably make sense to keep him shorter but it’s a little limited after you leave here. At Pimlico you have to go three-quarters,” he said. “I don’t see him as a three-quarter-type horse. I think he’s probably a seven-eighths to a one-turn mile horse. But, he’s a lovely horse and I’m not going to be in a big hurry to run him back after this race.”

Rainbow 6, Late Pick 5, Super Hi-5 Carryovers for Sunday Card

There will be carryovers in the 20-cent Rainbow 6, 50-cent Late Pick 5 and $1 Super Hi-5 wagers for Sunday’s eight-race card, which begins at 1:10 p.m.

Upsets by 20-1 Wilko’s Goldeneye ($43.60) in Race 6 and 45-1 Girl Drama ($94.40) in Race 8, both ridden by Felix Pinero, helped the Rainbow 6 carryover jackpot grow to $15,534.93 after going unsolved Saturday. Tickets with five of six winners were worth $4,105.48.

The Late Pick 5 returned $65.50 for tickets with three winners, and will have a carryover of $5,514.30 on Sunday (Races 4-8).

A carryover of $7,378.77 will be available in the Super Hi-5 for Sunday’s opener. The Rainbow 6 sequence will begin in Race 3.

Notes: In addition to Pinero, jockeys Trevor McCarthy and Horacio Karamanos also had two wins Saturday. McCarthy, off a five-win Friday, was first with Rhinestone Cowboy ($6.80) in Race 1 and The Great Provider ($4.80) in Race 4; while Karamanos scored on Stoney Bennett ($7.40) in Race 7 and Bigz Littler ($21.80) in Race 9.