Sunday, June 10, 2012
Klassic Strawfly, a $12,500 claimer during his 3-year-old season, scored his first career stakes victory in Sunday's $75,000 Jimmy Drake Stakes (RG3) for New Mexico-bred Quarter Horses at SunRay Park.
Ridden by Macario Rodriguez for owner and trainer Ronald L. Stephens, Klassic Strawfly covered 400 yards in :19.215, posting a 98 speed index and pinning a half-length defeat on runner-up Snow Regard. The $45,000 winner's share of the purse pushed the homebred 6-year-old gelding's bankroll to $227,646, of which $94,465 – or 41 percent – has been earned this season.
Rodriguez is having an excellent season at SunRay Park, whose 42-day meet opened April 20 and runs through June 26. His victory in the Jimmy Drake Stakes came just one day after he rode J. Kirk and Judy Robison's Bab At The Bowster to a half-length win in Saturday's 7-furlong, $40,000 Dr. O.G. Fischer Memorial Stakes.
Rodriguez finished seventh in the jockey standings during the 2011-12 Sunland Park season, which directly preceded the start of the SunRay Park meet. However, through last weekend the veteran rider stood a clear fourth in the SunRay standings with 23 wins from 155 mounts and mount earnings of $315,764.
“I love this track – let's add another month or two to the season,” Rodriguez joked after the race.
Klassic Strawfly's sire, Genuine Strawfly, is a son of the Special Effort stallion Strawfly Special who won the 2002 All American Derby (G1) at Ruidoso Downs. Genuine Strawfly's top runners include New Mexico-bred stakes winners One Diamond Kitty, Here Kittykittykitty, Jenuine Joy, and Genuine American.
A half brother to Grade 3 winner Corona High, Genuine Strawfly, 13, stands for a $2,000 fee at Dr. Leonard Blach's Buena Suerte Ranch in Roswell, New Mexico.
Klassic Strawfly's dam, A Classic Song, is a winning and stakes-placed 17-year-old daughter of 1993 AQHA champion 2-year-old colt A Classic Dash.
Campaigned exclusively in New Mexico, Klassic Strawfly has won seven of 43 races. The gelding shipped to SunRay Park from Sunland Park, where he won a pair of state-bred allowance-optional claiming races.
At 3, Klassic Strawfly was a finalist in the $204,398 New Mexico Cup Derby (RG2) at Zia Park.
Miracle Snow finished third, a half of a length behind runner-up Snow Regard. In Famous Caper, De Genuine Queen, Mightys Last Call, Dueling Juan, Osbaldo, and 2-1 favorite Genuine American completed the order of finish.
Snow Regard is a homebred 4-year-old mare by Chicks Regard racing for KH Logax Inc. of Oro Valley, Arizona. Snow Regard has banked $228,532 from 18 outs, and her four wins include last year's 400-yard, $149,000 New Mexico Filly & Mare Championship (RG1) at Zia Park, and the $75,000 Sunburst Stakes (R) for state-bred sophomore fillies at Sunland.
A homebred 8-year-old Dean Miracle gelding owned by Melvin and Mary Neugebauer of Montrose, Colorado, Miracle Snow was coming off of a head victory as the 3-2 favorite in a 350-yard, $29,100 allowance race at SunRay on May 12. All told, the gelding has won 11 of 44 races, including two stakes, and the $7,500 third-place share of the Jimmy Drake stakes purse increased his earnings to $419,515.