Clubman Bounces Back with Win as Racing Returns to Laurel

Clubman Bounces Back with Win as Racing Returns to Laurel

Maryland’s Leatherman Gets First Win in FEGENTRI Amateur Race
Free Admission to Breeders’ Cup Watch Party Friday and Saturday

LAUREL, MD – Caonabo Stable’s multiple stakes winner Clubman, beaten as the favorite in the $150,000 Maryland Million Classic Oct. 19, bounced back with a 1 ¼-length victory in Thursday’s feature as live racing returned to Laurel Park.

Thursday’s 10-race card was the first at Laurel since Oct. 20. The last live programs scheduled for Oct. 24 to 27 were cancelled to repair a broken water pipe on the apron along the outer rail of the main track.

Ridden by Julian Pimentel for trainer Rodolfo Sanchez-Salomon, Clubman ($7.20) ran six furlongs in 1:09.93 over a sloppy main track in the open $55,000 allowance for 3-year-olds and up. It was the 10th career win in 35 starts for the 5-year-old Not For Love gelding, and first since the Maryland Coalition Stakes Aug. 24 at Timonium.

“He’s just come around,” Sanchez-Salomon’s assistant Joanne Shankle said. “You’ve just go to let him do his thing.”

Old Time Revival led the way through fractions of 22.62 and 45.69 seconds tracked by multiple graded-stakes placed Vorticity, racing for the first time since August 2018. Pimentel put Clubman into a contending position on the turn, swooping to the lead in mid-stretch and pulling away.

Clubman has made 11 starts this year, seven in stakes, also winning the Russell Road April 20 at Charles Town. Thursday was only his second non-stakes start since mid-March.

“We’ll go back in an allowance or look for another stake,” Shankle said. “We’ll see how he comes back.”

Maryland’s Leatherman Gets First Win in FEGENTRI Amateur Race

Daniel Green’s Here Comes Mongo took the lead rounding the far turn and extended it through the stretch to pass the wire 5 ½ lengths in front and give 20-year-old Union Bridge, Md. native Taylor Leatherman her first career riding victory.

Here Comes Mongo ($24), a 3-year-old gelding trained by Ann Merryman, won the Longines FEGENTRI Championship race in 1:42.35 over a sloppy main track. The $22,000 maiden claiming event for 3-year-olds and up was originally carded for 1 1/16 miles on the Exceller turf course.

Leatherman is the oldest daughter of trainer Faith Leatherman, owner and operator of family-run Winding Creek Farm in Union Bridge, a full-service Thoroughbred facility covering nearly 200 acres in Frederick County.

In addition to the farm, Leatherman has also worked as an exercise rider and member of the pony team for the Maryland Jockey Club at Laurel and Pimlico Race Course. In 2017, she galloped Preakness contender Royal Mo for California-based trainer John Shirreffs at Pimlico prior to the colt’s career-ending injury two days before the race.

Thursday’s race was the fifth for Leatherman, who debuted June 13, 2016 at Delaware Park and last rode June 10, 2018 at Laurel, finishing fourth aboard Zeke the Streak. She ran fifth in a Nov. 17, 2017 race won by Brittany (Trimble) Russell, now a stakes-winning trainer at Laurel married to Laurel jockey Sheldon Russell. A nose behind Leatherman was Weston Hamilton, who in 2018 would become the 11th Maryland-based rider to earn the Eclipse Award as champion apprentice.

FEGENTRI was founded in 1955 with the main purpose of promoting international races for amateur riders. At its inception, FEGENTRI was comprised of amateur riders from France, Germany, Italy, Sweden and Switzerland but has seen its membership grow to include riders from 25 different countries around the world.

Riders who have participated in FEGENTRI include Maryland-based jockeys Trevor McCarthy and Forest Boyce.

Free Admission to Breeders’ Cup Watch Party Friday and Saturday

Laurel Park will host a Breeders’ Cup watch party Friday and Saturday inside the state-of-the-art Sports Book located on the second-floor clubhouse.

Admission is free and seating on a first-come, first-served basis for the Watch Party, which is scheduled to run from 1 to 5 p.m. Friday and 1 to 9 p.m. Saturday. Laurel will open its doors at 11 a.m. each day.

First race post time for Laurel’s live 11-race card both days is 12:25 p.m. The first Breeders’ Cup races are scheduled to go off at 4:12 p.m. Friday (Juvenile Turf Sprint) and 2:55 p.m. Saturday (Filly & Mare Sprint), with the $6 million Classic (G1) set for 8:44 p.m.

At the watch party, fans will be able to enjoy a Breeders’ Cup-themed menu, official Breeders’ Cup cocktails, and 74 feet of LED racing action. No reservations or registration is required, and seating is offered on a first-come, first-served basis.

For more information, click here.

Notes: Shortleaf Stable’s homebred Tale of the Cat colt Crocketts Bluff, with Forest Boyce aboard for Hall of Fame trainer Shug McGaughey, graduated in his second career start with an 10-1 upset of Thursday’s sixth race, a $40,000 maiden special weight for 2-year-olds. The winning time for one mile was 1:39.22.

Jockey Alex Cintron posted back-to-back wins for owner James Wolf with Rohrbacher ($16.40) in Race 7 and Artful Splatter ($10.40) in Race 8, adding a third win with Magical Luna ($5.60)… Julio Correa, the nation’s leading apprentice rider, won on Catonsville ($5) in Race 1 and Bo Vuk ($6.40) in Race 9. Artful Splatter, Catonsville and Bo Vuk are all trained by Kieron Magee.