Determined Kingdom Among Virginia-Breds To Sparkle In Colonial Downs Turf Stakes - Horse Racing News | Paulick Report

Determined Kingdom Among Virginia-Breds To Sparkle In Colonial Downs Turf Stakes

Determined Kingdom, ridden by Mychel Sanchez, wins the Punch Line for Virginia-breds for second consecutive time

D. Hatman Thoroughbreds and Kingdom Bloodstock 's Determined Kingdom scored a convincing gate-to-wire victory under Mychel Sanchez in the 5½-furlong, $125,000 Punch Line Stakes Saturday at Colonial Downs — one of four turf stakes worth a total of $500,000 on the card for Virginia-bred and -sired horses.

The 4-year-old Animal Kingdom gelding won his fifth career race and pushed his bankroll to $325,189 with the win. The Phil Schoenthal trainee won the 2022 Punch Line by 5½ lengths in a rallying effort and captured Saturday's edition by 5¼ lengths on the front end.

“He's always been the kind of horse that relaxed off the pace and came on with a rush,” said Schoenthal, who enjoyed his second stakes win on the day as Living Magic captured the My Dear Girl Stakes at Woodbine. “But in the last two starts, he was very keen and showed a lot of speed and didn't have his relaxing kind of run. We cut blinkers way back today and felt like that might slow him and relax him but I told Mychel in the paddock that if he wants to go, don't fight him. He came out of there running. Mychel had a ton of horse, put him in place and put the field away.”

Schoenthal targeted this race early in the year. Coming off an eight-month layoff, Determined Kingdom had two late spring starts in Maryland that resulted in sixth and seventh place finishes.

“He needed a couple starts off the layoff,” Schoenthal said. “I didn't have him totally cranked up at Pimlico and thought he would run better at Laurel but didn't feel too bad because the winner in that race set a new track record. It was improvement and I felt that in his third start off the bench, he would improve again. I'm real proud of him. We got him as a yearling and he's been a lot of fun. It's really rewarding when he shows up on a big day.”

Larry Johnson's Embolden was second and David Lengel's Uncle Andrew finished third.

Determined Kingdom ($#.60) was bred by Audley Farm Equine, also the breeder of Country Life Farm's Galilei, winner of the $125,000 Brookmeade.

Galilei angled three-wide from third at the top of the stretch, passed two front runners, and hit the wire first, three-quarter lengths the best, in the 1 1/16-mile contest for fillies and mares. The 4-year-old daughter of Lemon Drop Kid had her best outing since a maiden-breaking turf win at Colonial last summer. Horacio Karamanos, Colonial's all-time leading jockey who had two stakes wins on the card, was in the irons for trainer Michael Trombetta.

Galilei returned $11.80.

Susan Moulton's Tufani was runner-up and Larry Johnson's Continentalcongress finished third.

Sam English's homebred Chambeau defended her 2022 Tyson Gilpin/Glenn Petty Stakes title by defeating seven other fillies and mares Saturday in this year's $125,000 edition. The 6-year-old Karakontie mare ($5.60) was ridden Karamanos and left the winner's circle with a career bankroll of $200,300.

Chambeau was positioned second through the half, took the lead at the top of the stretch and crossed 3¾ lengths the best. The Anthony Aguirre trainee — who did not start competing until the age of five — is now 3-for-6.

Robert D. Bone and Edward Brown's Carolina Sun finished second and Stonestreet Stables' Aisha R N was third.

Six-year-old Flatter gelding Alex Joon, who finished second in last year's Edward P. Evans Stakes, took a step forward in Saturday's $125,000 Evans with a three-length victory over Reiley McDonald's Passion Play. A field of nine battled one mile in the stakes fifth running, and after an inside move from deep in the field early on, Lindsay Schultz's trainee crossed first with Forest Boyce up top. The victor, bred by Morgan's Ford Farm, is owned by Ten Strike Racing. He returned $4.60.

Iapetus Racing and Diamond T racing's Gigante was third.

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