Well done boys!

tobys_corner2On a miserable damp, misty day at Aqueduct Toby’s Corner won his first Stake race, the historical Whirlaway Stakes.  It seems that he plays with the leader in the stretch until the jockey convinces him to actually move in front to win the race!  He did that in his last race too.  Many congratulations to Dianne Cotter.

Sunday’s Thoroughbred Times written by Mike Curry

Talented Toby’s Corner takes Whirlaway. February of a colt’s three-year-old season is a prime time for classic dreams, and Toby’s Corner did nothing to dissuade his connections about his potential as a Triple Crown trail player on Saturday at Aqueduct in the $98,000 Whirlaway Stakes.

The chestnut colt from the first crop of record-setting 2005 Wood Memorial Stakes (G1) winner Bellamy Road closed with a sweeping bid off the far turn in the 1 1⁄16-mile race and put away 1.70-to-1 favorite J J’s Lucky Train for a last-to-first win in his stakes debut.

J J’s Lucky Train battled with the victor, who was gawking greenly at the grandstand entering the stretch, but Toby’s Corner shook free when jockey Eddie Castro got him to switch leads and drove

to a two-length win in 1:45.66 on a muddy, sealed main track.

“I tried to relax the horse first thing, and he had a nice kick,” Castro said. “I think he’s a nice horse, and I think he’ll go the distance, too.”

Toby’s Corner is one of four stakes winners for Bellamy Road, who stands for an advertised fee of $10,000 at Pauls Mill in Versailles, Kentucky.

Trained by Graham Motion for owner-breeder Diane Cotter, Toby’s Corner extended his winning streak to three. A sibling to stakes winner Bushmills Best, who is by Bellamy Road’s sire, Concerto, Toby’s Corner romped by 10 3⁄4 lengths in his final start at two and won his season debut by 1 1⁄4 lengths on January 12, both at Laurel Park.

After straightening out in the stretch in the Whirlaway, he covered the final sixteenth in :06.35.

“I was a little concerned about how he would handle the sloppy track, but he did well,” said Adrian Rolls, assistant to Motion. “I thought he made a pretty good move around the bend, and thought he would get there. He was looking around a little bit—he did that his last race, too—but he  straightened right out. It was a good effort. We’ll see how he comes out of this before looking ahead to his next race.”—Mike Curry



At the other end of the country in a balmy 78 degrees, Smart Bid was literally pipped at the post for his first Grade I win.  What’s a nose?  Same as winning except you get second purse money.  Congratulations anyway to Augustin Stables, and Mr. Strawbridge was at Gulfstream to see his home bred colt run a wonderful race.{jcomments on}

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