Fogelsonger wins Schapiro, 5 more

Six-win day, a career best, is 1 shy of Pimlico record

Horse Racing

September 19, 2004|By Tom Keyser | Tom Keyser,SUN STAFF

Ryan Fogelsonger rode six winners yesterday at Pimlico, including the rejuvenated Lusty Latin in the $150,000 John D. Schapiro Memorial Breeders' Cup Handicap. The race was named in honor of the former owner of the Laurel racetrack and father of the Washington International.

Fogelsonger, 23, fell one short of the Pimlico record of seven wins in a day by jockey Paul Nicol Jr. in 1983. The winner of the Eclipse award in 2002 for apprentice jockey, Fogelsonger had ridden five winners in a day seven times, four at Pimlico and three at Colonial Downs.

"This was definitely one of the best days I've ever had," Fogelsonger said. "I thought I had a chance for a big day, but often times when that happens you don't even get one."

After winning with So Good in the first, Rush to Glory in the fourth, Red Ribbons in the sixth, Mike the Navy Man in the seventh and Brilliant Peaks in the eighth, Fogelsonger settled astride Lusty Latin, the 9-2 third choice, in the five-horse Schapiro. Scheduled on turf, the 1 1/8 -mile race attracted 10 entrants. Overnight rains moved the race to the dirt, prompting five scratches.

That worked to perfection for Mark Shuman and Michael Gill, Lusty Latin's trainer and owner, respectively. They entered him in the Schapiro hoping it would come off the turf. Shuman said he'd have scratched Lusty Latin if the race had stayed on grass.

The 5-year-old gray gelding stalked the pacesetter, Mr O'Brien, until the head of the stretch, then roared through on the inside to win by 4 1/2 lengths. He completed the 1 1/8 miles in 1 minute, 49 seconds and paid $11.80 to win.

"He's the most talented horse I've got in my barn," said Shuman, who trains 130 horses for Gill, the nation's winningest owner. "I wish it was two months ago. I'd be trying for one of those mile-and-a-quarter races at Belmont."

He meant possibly the Jockey Club Gold Cup, one of the country's most prestigious races.

"I think he's that kind of horse," Shuman said.

He wasn't always. Lusty Latin lost 20 of his first 22 races, mostly in California for trainer Jeff Mullins. He finished 15th in the 2002 Kentucky Derby.

Under Mullins' care, Lusty Latin underwent surgery for removal of an undescended testicle. Gill claimed the horse for $80,000 in December. After four consecutive losses, Gill ordered Lusty Latin's other testicle removed.

Since then, Lusty Latin has won three of four races, including two allowance races at Saratoga. Shuman said he didn't know where he'd run him next, although he said the Breeders' Cup Classic wasn't out of the question.

Foufa's Warrior finished second behind Lusty Latin, and Mr O'Brien, the 2-5 favorite, faded to last. Robin Graham, his trainer, said he needed turf or mud to be effective. By the time of the Schapiro, the dirt track had dried out and was rated "fast."

NOTES: No progress has been made and no meetings scheduled to resolve the conflict between the MidAtlantic Cooperative and the New York Racing Association that since Wednesday has shut off Belmont Park races to mid-Atlantic tracks and off-track-betting sites, Martin Lieberman, executive director of the cooperative, said yesterday. ... The Maryland Jockey Club and thoroughbred horsemen and breeders have reached agreement with their standardbred counterparts at Rosecroft Raceway to extend their simulcasting deal through Dec. 31. The deal allows the exchange of thoroughbred and harness simulcast signals.

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