Brilliant Brass faces rest, possibly retirement Foot injury may put an end to career of Bassford mare

December 29, 1992|By Ross Peddicord | Ross Peddicord,Staff Writer

Brilliant Brass is headed to the farm, but a decision o whether she will be retired has yet to be made.

The 5-year-old mare bruised her left front foot and returned lame after she won her ninth 1992 stakes victory on Sunday in the All JTC Brandy Handicap at Laurel Race Course.

"The foot was X-rayed and showed no fractures," said trainer Carlos Garcia.

But even though there were no breaks, he indicated that he would recommend that owners Nick and Elaine Bassford retire the mare, who has won $767,052, most of it this year.

Elaine Bassford said yesterday that she and her husband had already decided to give the mare a lengthy vacation even before the All Brandy was run.

"Any horse that wins eight stakes -- and then the All Brandy made nine -- deserves a rest," Mrs. Bassford said. "But we are flying so high now with the kind of year that we've had. We just need to take breather and evaluate our whole situation before we can make a final judgment [about retiring her]. She will be 6 next year and has had a fine career. It would be nice to go out on a winning note."

When Fight Over Peace won the $22,000 feature at Laurel yesterday, it was the 42nd win this year for the Bassford stable.

The couple keeps about 15 horses in training among three trainers -- King Leatherbury, Carlos Garcia and Ricky Sillaman. Their horses made 179 starts in 1992, and won 23 percent of them.

In addition to the 42 victories, they have had 30 seconds and 24 thirds, putting them in the money 54 percent of the time.

Because of Brilliant Brass' success, Mrs. Bassford said she and her husband didn't feel any pressure to start any of their seven 2-year-olds, soon to be 3. "We didn't run a single 2-year-old this year," she said.

They plan to continue the same sort of program in 1993 that has led to their current success.

"We will keep bringing along our homebreds, and also claim some horses," she said. "We have 10 yearlings that will be 1993 2-year-olds." About half of them have already been shipped to trainer Webb Carroll in South Carolina to be broken, including a full brother to Brilliant Brass named B L's Brass.

"I don't know what kind of year we'll have in 1993," she said. "But I'm going to keep treasuring this one right up until Dec. 31."

Another Bassford horse, Sycamore Slew, starts today in the ninth race.

Another Mobberley succeeds

Bird Mobberley, 24, is following in the footsteps of her parents, Jack and Gretchen Mobberley.

Silas Green, a horse she gallops and helps her parents train, won its fifth straight race yesterday. The homebred had been claimed from the Mobberleys last year for $18,000. But the horse apparently missed them so much it refused to eat for its new trainer. Silas Green won one race, but when it was dropped down to a $6,500 tag, the Mobberleys reclaimed him.

"We gave him a rest, and it took him awhile, but now he seems to enjoy what he's doing," Bird Mobberley said.

Yesterday's win came in an $16,500 allowance race. Silas Green lasted to beat Keystone Cop by a head.

Gretchen Mobberley was kicked in the stomach by a horse at Laurel last summer. Although she has now recovered, she restricts her riding to a lead pony in the mornings and leaves the racehorse galloping to Bird.

Miscellaneous

Thursday is the final deadline for nominating current yearlings, which will be 2-year-olds of 1993, for lifetime eligibility to the Maryland Million. It is also the deadline for nominating stallions, who will be bred during the 1993 season, to the Maryland Million program.

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