June 4, 2018
PENNINE RIDGE S.-GIII, $196,000, Belmont, 6-2, 3yo, 1 1/8mT, 1:45.78, fm.
1--CATHOLIC BOY, 123, c, 3, by More Than Ready/Song of Bernadette O-Robert V LaPenta, Madaket Stables LLC, Siena Farm LLC & Twin Creeks Racing Stables LLC; B-Fred W Hertrich III & John D Fielding (KY); T-Jonathan Thomas; J-Javier Castellano. $120,000. Lifetime Record: 7-4-1-0, $522,000.
2--Analyze It, 121, c, 3, Point of Entry/Sweet Assay, ($130,000 Ylg '16 KEESEP; $190,000 2yo '17 OBSMAR). >TDN Rising Star= O-William H Lawrence; B-P Headley Bell, Nancy Bell & NATO (KY); T-Chad C Brown. $40,000.
3--Channel Cat, 117, c, 3, English Channel/Carnival Kitten O/B-Calumet Farm (KY); T-Todd A Pletcher. $20,000.
Margins: NK, 4 1/4, 2 1/4. Odds: 4.40, 0.20, 31.50.
TDN Rising Star Analyze It (Point of Entry) was nearly everyone's banker to take his unbeaten streak to four in Saturday's GII Pennine Ridge S., but Catholic Boy had different ideas and, despite having to overcome trouble in a couple of spots when push was coming to shove, stuck to his guns and found the wire best. Having never been closer than fifth at the opening call of any of his six previous trips to the post, Catholic Boy was given an enterprising ride by Javier Castellano and while many thought it would be the chalk who would make the running, the 4-1 second choice set a solid early tempo. Analyze It was content to lay second into the backstretch run, until Untamed Domain made a mid-race bid three wide on the track, forcing Jose Ortiz to go for Analyze It a bit earlier than he had wanted in order to maintain his position. Untamed Domain called it a day and began to retreat three furlongs out, and everything looked to be going swimmingly for Analyze It, who loomed boldly outside Catholic Boy at the quarter pole. The two looked to exchange bumps in upper stretch and Analyze It came in on his foe in a more pronounced way at the eighth pole, causing Castellano to check and lose momentum atop Catholic Boy. The race appeared in safe keeping for the favorite as late as the sixteenth pole, but Catholic Boy refused to go away and was along in the waning strides.
Stewards conducted an inquiry into the stretch run and a curious and perhaps frivolous claim of foul against the winner by Ortiz was lodged. The result was ultimately allowed to stand. "If we were going to beat Analyze It, I wanted to get control of the pace and make that horse come off the bridle and keep contact with us," commented winning trainer Jonathan Thomas. "If we turned it into a sprint and walked the dog, I was afraid we wouldn't out-foot him, so I wanted go ahead to send our horse,he's fit, he gets into a good rhythmand make [Analyze It] keep contact. It looked like it worked." The winner is likely to press on to the $1.2-milllion GI Belmont Derby July 7, a race that could also be the destination for Analyze It. The latter's trainer was taking the loss in stride. "I don't think he did anything wrong," said Chad Brown. "I guess he got whipped in the face on the turn, but it was before all the stuff happened. He's steered clear and alone in his races before when he's been in front. I'll just have to regroup with the horse and see why he did that today.