Roan Burgundy Announces His Presence with Maiden Victory

Roan Burgundy Announces His Presence with Maiden Victory

Apprentice Barbosa Reaches 100-Win Milestone with Friday Triple
Jockey Forest Boyce Takes a Turn as On-Air Analyst Friday
MJC Hosting College Day at the Races Sunday at Pimlico

LAUREL, MD – Respect the Valleys, Designated Hitters Racing and Karmac Stable’s 2-year-old colt Roan Burgundy got his racing career off to a successful start with a professional maiden special weight victory Friday at historic Pimlico Race Course.

As the 1-2 favorite crossed the wire 1 ¾ lengths in front after going six furlongs over a fast main track in 1:12.01, track announcer Dave Rodman said, “Don’t act like you’re not impressed” – a reference to dialogue spoken by titular character Ron Burgundy in the movie Anchorman.

Roan Burgundy, by multiple Grade 1 winner The Factor, fetched $70,000 during Fasig-Tipton’s Midlantic 2-year-olds in training sale in May at the Maryland State Fairgrounds in Timonium. He had put in nine timed works over Laurel’s main track since early June for his unveiling.

“We like him a lot. He always did everything right in the morning,” winning trainer Brittany Russell said. “We just backed off him a bit when we got him out of the sale, but he was actually quite fit when we bought him. Once we kind of got to tightening the screws it was obvious that he had a little bit of ability, so we felt pretty good today.”

Roan Burgundy and jockey Sheldon Russell drew Post 3 but wound up breaking from the rail following four early scratches including the two horses to his inside. He was outrun to the front by Landon Jack and pressed the leader through splits of 23.86 and 46.81 seconds before edging past on the outside in mid-stretch following five furlongs in 59.08. Landon Jack was a clear second, eight lengths ahead of Master of None.

“I knew he wasn’t quick enough to be in front of [Landon Jack], but Sheldon was able to work out a good trip. It was a perfect first experience,” Russell said. “I think we’ll take our time with him. He’s a big colt anyway, so he’ll be better as he goes on.”

Apprentice Barbosa Reaches 100-Win Milestone with Friday Triple

Teenage apprentice Jeiron Barbosa registered a natural hat trick Friday to reach the 100-win milestone at historic Pimlico Race Course.

Barbosa, an 18-year-old native of Puerto Rico, scored consecutive wins aboard Beckon ($12.40) in Race 2, Maythehorsebwithu ($6.00) in Race 3 and Gift of Gab ($9.60) in Race 4. Both Beckon and Gift of Gab are trained by Michael Merryman.

Represented by agent Tom Stift, Barbosa also finished third on Master of None in Race 5, fourth aboard Killy Start in Race 6 and second with Laddie Liam in Race 7. He left Baltimore following the seventh race for Penn National, where he was scheduled to ride two horses Friday night. Barbosa is named in seven of 10 races Saturday at Pimlico.

Barbosa, who rides with a five-pound weight allowance, attended the famed Escuela Hipica Vocacional in Puerto Rico for two years. According to Equibase statistics, he rode his first professional race there Jan. 1 and had three winners before arriving in the U.S. March 23. Two days later, he made his mainland debut at Laurel and won with each of his first two mounts – Heliacal Rising and Ludicrous Mode.

Despite missing the final three days of Laurel’s spring meet, Barbosa edged Jevian Toledo becoming just the third apprentice in a decade to lead the Laurel standings following Yomar Ortiz (2013 winter) and Julio Correa (2019 summer).

Barbosa earned his first stakes win Aug. 6 at Laurel aboard Music Amore for trainer Gerald Brooks, and followed up three days later by winning the Keswick at Colonial Downs with Titoschngedmyluck.

Through the first six months of his career, Barbosa has 100 wins from 589 mounts and purse earnings of more than $2.94 million.

Jockey Forest Boyce Takes a Turn as On-Air Analyst Friday

With her lone mount of the day an early scratch, jockey Forest Boyce joined host Tim Tullock as an on-air analyst for Friday’s broadcast of the nine-race program from historic Pimlico Race Course.

Boyce, a four-time meet champion in Maryland who turns 38 next month, first got a taste for on-air analysis over the summer at Colonial Downs.

“On the days when I only rode one or two late in the day, [host] Jessica Paquette was kind enough to let me come and handicap a couple with her to make the time go by. I’m not very good at sitting around,” Boyce said. “It’s been fun.”

Tullock reached out to Boyce Friday morning to see if the Baltimore native and Maryland Institute College of Art graduate would be interested in joining him for the early races, but she got some bonus time after her one mount on Refi in the eighth race was scratched.

“Tim called me in the morning as I was getting on horses and said, ‘Do you want to come on before the eighth?’ I said, ‘Yeah, let’s do it,’” Boyce said. “Then when my horse scratched he asked me if I wanted to do the whole day and I was like, ‘Why not?’” It’s been great. Tim is awesome to work with.

“It’s pretty natural, the whole handicapping thing, but I don’t think I’ve ever made an actual bet on a race,” she added. “I guess I look at it more from how I’d want to ride it or how I would ride it than necessarily what a gambler is looking at.”

Boyce has won 944 races and more than $32 million in purse earnings over her career, finishing second in Eclipse Award voting for champion apprentice of 2010, the year she won her four riding titles, two each at Pimlico and Laurel Park, and was Maryland’s overall leading rider. With no plans to quit her day job she has won 38 of 244 mounts in Maryland this year, good for eighth overall, with $1,630,760 in purses earned.

“You never know. I’m pretty happy doing what I’m doing at the moment,” she said. “It’s just something fun to do on a day when I don’t ride many. I don’t do well sitting around.”

Boyce made international headlines last week when she rode West Newton to victory in a Sept. 10 claiming race at Pimlico. The 6-year-old gelding was bred in England by Her Majesty, The Queen and the win came just two days after Queen Elizabeth II passed away at age 96 following a 70-year reign.

“That was really cool. I thought the funniest thing about it was when you look at the breeder, all it says is The Queen. I love that. I wasn’t like Queen Elizabeth or anything, just The Queen,” Boyce said. “It’s like if Madonna bred a horse. Or Beyonce.”

MJC Hosting College Day at the Races Sunday at Pimlico

Pre-registrations are still being accepted for the Maryland Jockey Club’s College Day at the Races scheduled from noon to 6 p.m. Sunday at historic Pimlico Race Course.

Students are encouraged to sign up for the unique opportunity to experience a day of live racing, music, food and a chance to win $10,000 in scholarship money.

A total of 10 prizes will be awarded of $1,000 each throughout the day. The event will run from noon to 6 p.m.

To be eligible for a chance to win, students must pre-register on or before Sunday by showing valid college/university ID and photo ID. Students who have yet to obtain a school ID may show proof of admission.

Following pre-registration, students must check in on-site between 12:40 and 2:30 p.m. the day of the event. Once completed, each student will receive a betting voucher.

Winners will be announced throughout the day and invited to have their photo taken in the winner’s circle after each race.

To register or for more information, click here.

For inquiries and special requests, contact

Notes: Jockey Angel Cruz notched back-to-back winners Friday aboard Better Call Mama ($10.60) in Race 6 and Assembly Point ($6.80) in Race 7 … Pimlico’s 10-race program Saturday (12:40 p.m. first post) includes five races scheduled for the turf that drew a total of 55 entries, averaging 11 starters per race. Race 2 is a maiden special weight for 2-year-olds sprinting five furlongs on the grass featuring five first-time starters including Barb’s Pride, a Maryland-bred son of Shaman Ghost trained by Dale Capuano for Steve Newby – the same connections that won the $75,000 Ben’s Cat and $100,000 Bald Eagle Derby on turf over successive weekends this summer at Laurel … Race 5 is a maiden special weight for horses ages 3, 4 and 5 going six furlongs on the dirt. Trainer Brittany Russell will send out Eight and Sand, adding blinkers off a sixth-place effort in debut Aug. 10 at Colonial Downs.