G2 Winner Hangover Kid Gets First Winner Friday at Laurel

G2 Winner Hangover Kid Gets First Winner Friday at Laurel

2-Year-Old Filly Miss J McKay Cruises in Career Debut
Ghost Hunter Nabs Third Win of 9-Year-Old Season in Friday Feature
Rainbow 6 Carryover Swells to $40,644 for Saturday
Summer Meet-Leading Jockey McCarthy Enjoys Three-Win Day

LAUREL, MD – Multiple stakes winner Hangover Kid, whose seven career victories included the 2014 Bowling Green (G2), got his stud career off to a successful start when Maxis Stable’s Miss J McKay captured her debut Friday at Laurel Park.

Favored at 4-5 among seven 2-year-old fillies in the $33,000 waiver maiden claiming event, Miss J McKay ($3.80) ran 5 ½ furlongs in 1:04.61 over a fast main track to win by 5 ¼ lengths under jockey Trevor McCarthy, the first of his three consecutive victories on the day.

“You can never be confident on their works until they actually show up in the afternoon and do it, but she’s been doing everything right in the morning,” winning trainer Cal Lynch said. “We were hoping that she’d show up like she did today.”

Breaking from the far outside post, McCarthy settled Miss J McKay in the clear three wide to the outside of Landing Zone, who went the opening quarter in 22.84 seconds, and Always Something. Miss J McKay secured the lead midway around the far turn, opened a clear advantage once straightened for home and was wrapped up by McCarthy for the final sixteenth of a mile.

Miss J McKay was bred in Maryland by Linda Oliff Rohleder of Centreville, Md., co-owner of ADU, formerly The Appliance Source, a builder-distributor of most major appliance brands for new construction and remodeling projects serving Maryland, Delaware and southern Virginia.

Out of the Street Boss mare Ballykiss, Miss J McKay fetched $55,000 as a yearling at Fasig-Tipton’s Midlantic Eastern Fall sale last October at the Maryland State Fairgrounds in Timonium. She did not reach her $85,000 reserve when offered at the Ocala Breeders’ Sales April auction of 2-year-olds in training, and joined Lynch’s string at Laurel. She represented Hangover Kid’s first starter.

“[They] bought her as a pinhook prospect and we didn’t get we wanted for her at OBS, so we got to keep her and train her and I’m glad we did. I think she’s going to be a nice filly,” Lynch said. “When the guys bought her, they had no idea who [Hangover Kid] was. I’m glad to have this one. Hopefully, it’s not the last [winner].”

First crop sire Hangover Kid entered stud in 2016 and stands at Murmur Farm in Darlington, Md. for $2,500 live foal. As a racehorse, the son of 1999 Belmont (G1) and Travers (G1) winner and 2000 champion older horse Lemon Drop Kid made 26 starts over four seasons from 2011-14, winning or placing 17 times with purse earnings of $643,203.

In addition to the Bowling Green, Hangover Kid won the 2013 West Point Stakes at Saratoga, was second in the 2014 Monmouth Stakes (G2) and 2013 Red Smith Handicap (G3) and third in the 2013 United Nations (G1) for trainer Jason Servis.

Ghost Hunter Gets Third Win of 9-Year-Old Season in Friday Feature

Triple K Stables and Jagger Inc.’s Grade 3 winner Ghost Hunter, still going strong at the age of 9, made it look easy as he registered career victory No. 22 with a two-length triumph in Friday’s featured fourth race.

Ridden by Trevor McCarthy for trainer Jamie Ness and favored at 3-2 against six rivals, Ghost Hunter ($5) ran 1 1/16 miles in 1:46.38 over a yielding Exceller turf course in the $45,000 second-level optional claiming allowance for 3-year-olds and up.

It was the third win from four 2019 starts and second in a row for Ghost Hunter, a gelded son of Hall of Famer Ghostzapper who has earned each of his victories this year over Laurel’s world-class turf course.

Ghost Hunter broke sharp but McCarthy was content to let 16-1 long shot Speed Gracer take the lead, holding it through a slow opening quarter of 26.06 seconds. Given clear run to the pacesetter’s outside, Ghost Hunter forged a short lead on the backstretch as the half went in 52.00, separated from his pursuers inside the eighth pole and held firm under a drive as Dream Doctor rallied late for second.

“Today there was no pace in here, so I just broke well with him and kind of let them slow it up. He was real comfortable down the backside and I said, ‘Man, he’s just going to do it so easy today,’ and he did,” McCarthy said. “I just want to give Jamie a lot of credit. He’s done a real good job training this horse for a long time. It’s a big credit to him and the barn.”

Ness claimed Ghost Hunter from Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott for $25,000 in June 2014 and the horse has gone on to win or place in seven stakes, giving Ness his first graded triumph in the 2017 Arlington Handicap (G3). The same year he was also second by a neck in the Hanshin (G3) as well as the Presque Isle Downs Mile, a race he won in 2016 and ran second in 2018.

McCarthy has been aboard for each of the last two races. The summer meet’s leading rider compared Ghost Hunter to late Mid-Atlantic legend Ben’s Cat, a winner of 26 stakes and more than $2.6 million in purses who raced to the age of 11.

“He’s, what, 9 years old now? He reminds me a lot of Ben when he was 10 and I won the Jim McKay on him and the allowance race here,” McCarthy said. “He’s just one of those rare horses you ride that will always give you 100 percent no matter if it’s dirt, turf, soft turf, wet track, anything. They’re fun to be around and you don’t forget about them.”

Rainbow 6 Carryover Swells to $40,644 for Saturday

The 20-cent Rainbow 6 carryover jackpot swelled to $40,644.57 for Saturday’s nine-race card after going unsolved Friday at Laurel Park.

A total of $16,964 was bet into the popular multi-race wager Friday, on top of a $35,217.16 carryover from Thursday’s card. Multiple tickets with all six winners each returned $83.22.

The carryover jackpot is only paid out when there is a single unique ticket sold with all six winners. On days when there is no unique ticket, 60 percent of that day’s pool goes back to those bettors holding tickets with the most winners, while 40 percent is carried over to the jackpot pool.

Saturday’s Rainbow 6 spans Races 4-9 and includes a $47,000 third-level optional claiming allowance for fillies and mares 3 and up in Race 7 set for 5 ½ furlongs over the Bowl Game turf course, and an $45,000 second-level optional claiming allowance for females 3 and older at 1 1/16 miles on the Exceller layout in Race 8 led by stakes winner Peach of a Gal and undefeated Ode to Joy.

There will also be a $1 Super Hi-5 carryover of $876.56.

First race post time is 1:10 p.m.

Notes: Summer meet-leading jockey Trevor McCarthy recorded a riding triple Friday, scoring a natural hat trick aboard Miss J McKay ($3.80) in Race 3, Ghost Hunter ($5) in Race 4 and Princess Palomar ($3.40) in Race 5. Both Ghost Hunter and Princess Palomar are trained by Jamie Ness.