Channel Maker Wires Joe Hirsch


Channel MakerSarah Andrew

Winner of the 2018 GI Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational S., Channel Maker (English Channel) made amends for a close second in last year's renewal with a front-running score in the 2020 edition Saturday at Belmont. Taking up his preferred position at the head of affairs, the chestnut clicked off splits of :22.89, :49.44 and 1:14.45. Still in front turning for home, the hard-knocking gelding kept on finding in the lane, rolling clear to victory.

“We would have wanted to envision it working out this way and it worked out,” said winning trainer Bill Mott. “It doesn't always work out as planned, but it did today and it did last time [in the GI Sword Dancer S.] He had a little pressure early from Cross Border, but he was able to sneak away from him.”

“I just felt like when he made that jump turning for home, I didn't think they could come get him,” part-owner Dean Reeves said. “He's that kind of horse. He's just tough.Bill has him so fit. When he came back, it looked like he could he could go another lap. He had a lot left in the tank turning for home.”

Scoring his lone win of 2019 in the GI Man o' War S., Channel Maker was fourth in the GII Mac Diarmida S. Feb. 29 and was eighth in both the GII Mervin Muniz Memorial S. Mar. 21 and Tiller S. June 4. Completing the superfecta in the GI Manhattan S. over this course on Independence Day, he crossed the line fourth in the GII Bowling Green S. Aug. 1, but was promoted to third via DQ. The 6-year-old entered this event off a wire-to-wire triumph on soft ground in Saratoga's GI Sword Dancer S. Aug. 29.


Pedigree Notes:

The winner's full-brother is Sovereign Award winner Johnny Bear, who captured consecutive renewals of Woodbine's GI Northern Dancer Turf S. Their stakes-winning half-sister Court Return (Court Vision) is the final foal out of their stakes-winning dam In Return and both of them set new course records with their black-type scores. Channel Maker hails from the family of Grade I winner Auntie Mame (Theatrical {Ire}).


Saturday, Belmont Park
JOE HIRSCH TURF CLASSIC S.-GI, $250,000, Belmont, 10-3, 3yo/up, 1 1/2mT, 2:25.99, fm.
1–CHANNEL MAKER, 126, g, 6, by English Channel
                1st Dam: In Return, by Horse Chestnut (Saf)
                2nd Dam: Bartered Bride, by Shadeed
                3rd Dam: Lady Vixen, by Sir Ivor
($57,000 RNA Ylg '15 KEESEP). O-Wachtel Stable, Barber, Gary,

R. A. Hill Stable and Reeves Thoroughbred Racing; B-Tall Oaks

Farm (ON); T-William I. Mott; J-Manuel Franco. $137,500.
Lifetime Record: 36-7-5-4, $2,631,551. *Full to Johnny Bear,
Ch. Turf Male-Can, MGISW, $702,706; and 1/2 to Court Return
(Court Vision), SW & GSP, $139,106. Werk Nick Rating: A+++
   *Triple Plus*. Click for the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree.
2–Laccario (Ger), 126, c, 4, Scalo (GB)–Laccata (GB), by Lomitas
(GB). O-Manfred Ostermann; B-Gestut Hof Ittlingen (GER);
T-Andreas Wohler. $50,000.
3–Sadler's Joy, 126, h, 7, Kitten's Joy–Dynaire, by Dynaformer.
O/B-Woodslane Farm (KY); T-Thomas Albertrani. $30,000.
Margins: 2 1/4, HF, 1HF. Odds: 2.80, 9.30, 4.50.
Also Ran: Master Piece (Chi), Rockemperor (Ire), Cross Border, Highland Sky. Click for the chart, the PPs or the free catalogue-style pedigree. VIDEO, sponsored by Fasig-Tipton.

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