Gun Runner's Life Talk Speaks Loudest at the Spa

Life Talk | Sarah Andrew


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y.–It turned out that breeder John Mulholland's trip from Lexington to Saratoga Race Course this week didn't turn out the way he had hoped, but it was not a waste of time.

Life Talk (Gun Runner), a filly he co-bred, took care of that Thursday, rolling to a 6 1/2-length victory in the second race. Sent off at 2-5 in the field of six 2-year-old maiden fillies going one mile on the dirt, Life Talk made a wide move coming off the turn, zipped past the competition and ran away. After taking the lead under Irad Ortiz, Jr., she lugged in noticeably, but was already on her way to an impressive victory. Like Talk, trained by Todd Pletcher for Repole Stable, completed the eight furlongs in 1:38.18 and paid $2.80.

Mulholland Springs LLC, Gun Runner Syndicate and Tom Grether Farms Inc. bred Life Talk, who sold for $335,000 at the 2022 Keeneland September Sale. Life Talk is out of the Bernardini mare Touchy Feely, owned by Mulholland Springs.

“She's had a handful of foals now,” Mulholland said. “We raced her first foal, the Majesticperfection named Feeling, but this is clearly the most talented one so far. She looks like she could be anything. It's pretty exciting for us. It's a family we've owned for over 30 years.”

Mulholland said he was in town for the final weekend of the Saratoga season because it looked like he might have two fillies he bred in the GI Spinaway S. on Sunday. He said Saratoga Secret (Arrogate) trained by D. Wayne Lukas, the runner-up in the GIII Schuylerville S., will miss the race with a shin issue. Life Talk had a troubled trip while finishing second by a head on July 30, but was still being considered for the stakes.

“They opted to run in this race,” Mullholland said. “I was hoping to have two in the in the Spinaway, but this is an OK consolation. Beggars can't be choosers, so this is nice.”

Pletcher's assistant, Tristan Barry, said Life Talk delivered a solid performance, a big improvement over her debut.

“She did everything professionally today,” he said. “Broke sharp from the gate then sat a good trip and did what nice horses do.”

Life Talk was in a stalking position through opening splits of 24.30 seconds, 48.45 and 1:13.32. She circled the two in front coming off the turn and was gone.

Jockey Irad Ortiz, Jr. said the filly was much better in her second start.

“For sure. Every step of the way,” he said. “She broke better. She put me in a perfect spot in the first part of the race and from there I was just biding my time.

2nd-Saratoga, $105,000, Msw, 8-31, 2yo, f, 1m, 1:38.18, ft, 6 1/2 lengths.
LIFE TALK (f, 2, Gun Runner–Touchy Feely, by Bernardini) got her picture taken at Saratoga minutes after being represented as a breeder by Kentucky Downs maiden winner Buttercream Babe (Twirling Candy) when overwhelming five rivals. Drawn the fence while stretching out to the mile off a near-miss second to Alys Beach (Omaha Beach) on 6 1/2-furlong debut July 30, the $335,000 Keeneland September purchase was away cleanly enough from the one hole and took up a position towards the back of the field as Paradise Lane (Quality Road) took over from Rising Inflation (Mitole) as they turned up the backstretch. Consigned to a three-wide run around the far turn, Life Talk began to zero in on Paradise Lane nearing the stretch, took over while drifting down towards the inner part of the track with a furlong and a half to travel and pulled readily clear to take it by 6 1/2 lengths as the 2-5 jolly. Backstretch Rose (Army Mule) outfinished Rising Inflation to complete the exacta. Life Talk is the third winner from three to race out of a half-sister to GSW Indian Firewater (Indian Charlie). Her dam has a yearling filly by Maclean's Music, a weanling Bolt d'Oro filly and was bred to Cyberknife this season. Sales history: $160,000 Wlg '21 KEENOV; $335,000 Ylg '22 KEESEP. Lifetime Record: 2-1-1-0, $78,750. Click for the chart or VIDEO, sponsored by FanDuel TV.
O-Repole Stable; B-Gun Runner Syndicate, Mulholland Springs LLC & Tom Grether Farms Inc (KY); T-Todd A Pletcher.

Race report by Alan Carasso


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