Saturday’s Cassidy Stakes and Birdonthewire Stakes at Calder Casino and Race Course was highlighted by another stakes victory for trainer Kathleen O’Connell and jockey Antonio Gallardo and a first time stakes winner Larry A. Bell’s Pachanga Party.
$85,000 CASSIDY STAKES
With jockey Antonio Gallardo aboard Gilbert G. Campbell’s Secret Kitten was able to grab with another stakes victory in the Cassidy Stakes.
“I think she has improved because all of the time she goes in front,” said Gallardo. “She is very competitive in front. Today, two horses came with me and I didn’t want to tire my filly out. I put her off the pace a little bit like second, third, and she looked at the other horse a little bit but when I asked, she went. That’s a good horse.”
Under the training of Kathleen O’Connell, Secret Kitten has been able to come away with two stakes victories in only three races.
“It’s been a group effort to mold her into what she is because it was there but it was all in the rough,” said O’Connell. “Antonio gets along with the temperamental horses too and he’s been a big player. He rode for me last year in Tampa for the first time and I really got to know him better. It’s good when everybody can work together because it’s definitely a team effort.”
Team Work Horseman Group’s Chinita Mia started slow out of the gate, but was able to rally through the stretch and capture second in trainer Juan Andres Rodriguez’s U.S. Stakes Debut.
Secret Kitten returned $3.20 and $2.10 for the win and Chinita Mia paid $12.00 for second.
Completing the order of finish were City in Sky, Flutterby, and Pomeroy Angel.
$85,000 BIRDONTHEWIRE STAKES
In his first stakes and only second career start, Larry A. Bell’s Pachanga Party was victorious in the Birdonthewire Stakes.
“The horse broke his maiden at Gulfstream on the lead,” said jockey Abdiel Jaen. “I ran him the same way on the lead and he had a good finish.”
Pachanga Party responded when Pallium Prize made a run to reach near even terms for command at the quarter pole, but could not hold on in the stretch; and Run for Logistics made a run to reach the winner at the quarter pole, tried to get inside at the eighth pole, but then weakened. Although Pachanga Party was challenged by rivals, he was able to hold the lead through the race and edge away with the win by 1¾-lengths.
“I told my jockey, these other horses might run away from you; so if you don’t break good or if you break with them and you want to lay back, okay, but it’s up to you,” said Dennis Ward, trainer Wesley A. Ward’s father. “It’s a good thing he did what he wanted to do. He ran like he did last time and when he turned for home, he just ran away.”
Pachanga Party returned $25.20, $10.60, and $4.40 for the win. Pallium Prize paid $14.00 and $5.40 for second, and Run for Logistics returned $2.10 for third.
Completing the order of finish were Tea’s Two Step, Kennerly Road, Bluegrass Derby, and Macho Trini.