Somelikeithotbrown delivers rescheduled mint millions
Take charge with his natural speed, millionaire winning ranked stakes Somelikeithotbrown rejected an offer from a stable mate Expiate September 10 to land his career-richest payday in the $707,545 WinStar Mint Million Stakes (G3T) at Kentucky Highs.
The Mint Million was worth up to $1 million for the Kentucky breeds, although the race’s official value dropped due to Somelikeithotbrown’s foaling in New York. He won $330,770 on a base purse of $550,000 for owners Skychai Racing and David Koenig.
This partnership bred the 6-year-old horse under its Hot Pink Stables and Sand Dollar Stables banners.
After enjoying a relatively easy pace during the one-mile Mint Million with gaps of :46.93 and 1:10.58 under Jose Ortiz, Somelikeithotbrown had to work for Saturday’s victory, rejecting a challenge of chasing the sluggish pace on the long stretch of the Kentucky Downs. . Although Atone looked like a danger at first, relying on the confident handling of Tyler Gaffalione, Somelikeithotbrown proved to be the more resolute finisher.
He shot clear late by 1 1/4 lengths, with Atone just surviving an inside bid from the stalker Mr Dumas to hold the place behind a final time of 1:33.88 on a firm rated grass course.
Register for BloodHorse Daily
“The last eighth of a mile the other horse looked him in the eye and he came back,” Ortiz said.
Field passes ran fourth, giving Kentucky Downs all-time winningest coach Mike Maker a 1-2-4 finish with his three starters.
The Mint Million favored Somelikeithotbrown ($6.60) with its 10th win in 28 starts and victory over eight stakes. After finishing third in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1T) as a 2-year-old in 2018, he has now notched wins at 3, 4, 5 and 6. He won the Jeff Ruby Steaks (G3) on synthetic as a sophomore, followed a year later with a victory in the Bernard Baruch Handicap (G2T), won the Dinner Party Stakes (G2T) last year and picked up his first graded victory of 2022 by capturing the race of Saturday.
A start before the Mint Million, he won the August 26 West Point Stakes presented by Trustco Bank against New York-breds in a race off the turf in the mud at Saratoga Racetrack.
“It’s hard not to love a beautiful, sleek horse like him,” Maker said. “He’s had good longevity with us.”
Somelikeithotbrown benefited from the postponement of the Mint Million from September 3 to Saturday due to heavy rain which canceled the race last Saturday. Not in the initial training, the extra week gave him enough time to compete.
“We weren’t sure about going to this race because we only had two weeks since our last one in Saratoga,” said co-owner Dr. Harvey Diamond of Skychai Racing. “But we decided it was okay. He looked good, and it was the day. Our day. We like this place. We run well here. The coach runs well here. We will be back.”
His main partner in Skychai, Jimmy Shircliff, said he was worried when Atone threatened at first.
“I thought to myself, ‘Well, second is not bad,'” he said. “Between José and the horse, what a ride.”
The cleverly named Somelikeithotbrown, by Tall brown out of Carpet Mare Marilyn Monroan is one of two bet winners for his mother, the other being shaken joe , a winner of the restricted stakes in Saratoga. Four of his seven foals have started, with his three unreleased foals being 3-year-olds Monromeo (Malice Palace ), 2 years college blonde (hard spun ), and one not yet old enough to race, an anonymous Mendelssohn filly born this year.