July 7, 2014

Led by champion Shared Belief and the progressive Minorette, sophomore stars by Lane’s End sires were out in force on July 4th weekend, with major stakes from coast-to-coast going to runners with connections to Lane’s End.

In the G1 Belmont Oaks Invitational S., part of the newly inaugurated Stars and Stripes Festival at Belmont Park, it was SMART STRIKE’s Minorette who came away with the hardware after defeating LEMON DROP KID’s Sea Queen.

Owned by the Coolmore partners, the 3yo Minorette gamely reeled in her determined rival and drew away late to win the $1 million race by two lengths for the Chad Brown barn. The Belmont Oaks is a “Win and You’re In” race for the G1 Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf. Minorette was bred by the Silk and Scarlet Syndicate and is a half to KINGMAMBO’s Group 1-winning Master of Hounds.

On the Stars and Stripes undercard, the late-running Kid Cruz, a 3yo colt by LEMON DROP KID, got his first graded victory in the $200,000 G3 Dwyer S. Looking for his fourth stakes victory in his last five starts, the Linda Rice-trained colt launch his patented strong late run to beat entrymate Captain Serious by 3/4 lengths while stopping the clock in a good 1:41 flat for the 1 1/16 miles. Also on undercard, CITY ZIP’s Palace finished second in the G3 Belmont Sprint Championship S.

Out in California, all eyes were on the undefeated Shared Belief in the $500,000 G2 Los Alamitos Derby, and last year’s champion juvenile male led home a CANDY RIDE (ARG) exacta in exemplary fashion. Making his second start of the year, the G1 CashCall Futurity winner looked to have a fight on his hands as graded winner Candy Boy came to him in upper stretch, but he stretched clear when asked to defeat that paternal sibling by 4 1/4 lengths. Trainer Jerry Hollendorfer indicated the G1 Pacific Classic could be next for Shared Belief, who was foaled and raised at Lane’s End for breeders Pam and Marty Wygod. ROCK HARD TEN’s Tonito M., raised and sold by Lane’s End, completed the Lane’s End trifecta.

MINESHAFT’s 3yo daughter Fortune Pearl ran hard into a slow pace to finish third in the G2 Black-Eyed Susan S. back in May, and on Saturday got a well-deserved first graded win in the G2 Delaware Oaks with faster splits to close into. Fortune Pearl is owned by breeder Zanim Ralphy Meahjohn and trained by Graham Motion. Lane’s End sales grad Aibhilin completed the trifecta in the $300,000 centerpiece.

On the Delaware Oaks undercard, Concise (GB), a 4yo filly by LEMON DROP KID, finished second in the G3 Robert G. Dick Memorial S. In other stakes action on the day, STEPHEN GOT EVEN’s 3yo colt Farmer Steve was second in the $75,000 Daniel Stearns Cleveland Gold Cup S.

Horses with Lane’s End connections continued to make noise on Sunday. Flaxman Holdings homebred Main Sequence, foaled and raised at Lane’s End, flew home to win the G1 United Nations H. at Monmouth in his U.S. debut. He’s another from the red-hot Graham Motion barn. The United Nations is a “Win and You’re In” race for the G1 Breeders’ Cup Turf.

Congrats to the connections of all these talented horses!

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