It's 'Jack' on the Cutback in Jerkens

Jack Christopher | Sarah Andrew

While he lost nothing in defeat when trying two turns for the first time in the GI Haskell Invitational S. the Jack Christopher (Munnings) everyone is accustom to was back at Saratoga, charging home a decisive winner of the GI H. Allen Jerkens Memorial S.

Hammered down to 1-2 favoritism getting back around one turn, the flashy chestnut tracked Conagher (Jimmy Creed) from second through a :22.18 first quarter. Drawing alongside as the half went in :44.53, Jack Christopher skipped to the front when Jose Ortiz shook the reins at him and strode clear to win by X over last year's GI Hopeful S. winner Gunite (Gun Runner).

“Exiting the Haskell, that was going to be our plan if he didn't win and cut him back to this prestigious race here,” winning trainer Chad Brown said. “I'm just so proud of the horse. He's been a very consistent horse. He's never disappointed us in a workout or a race. Jose [Ortiz] rode another fantastic race on him. He broke sharp and used good judgment to rate him just a touch. Every pole, he was in control of the race. I'm so proud of both Jose and the horse.”

“Four weeks [rest] and he ran huge,” said winning pilot Jose Ortiz. “He gave me everything he had and a very good race. Honestly, though he was a little offbeat down the backside but at the three-eighths pole he picked up little by little and I knew when I got next to the one-horse [Conagher], I knew I got him. From then on he just kept going the same pace. I knew if he didn't stop, he was going to run them off their feet because he was running the whole way. Seven [furlongs] is a tricky distance. I'd rather go a mile but seven-eighths is tricky. The pace is a little bit faster and you have to run the whole way there and he did.”

Tabbed a 'TDN Rising Star' off an ultra-impressive debut romp at this oval exactly 364 days ago, Jack Christopher followed suit with a good-looking score in Belmont's GI Champagne S. in October. The early favorite going into the Breeders' Cup, he was a late scratch by the Del Mar vets with a minor left shin issue. The $135,000 FTKOCT buy reemerged on the First Saturday in May with a facile victory in the GII Pat Day Mile and blew away the field with a 10-length demolition of Belmont's GI Wood Stephens S. June 11. Stretched to a route for the first time at Monmouth in the Haskell July 23, he gave a valiant effort and ultimately finished third.

Pedigree Notes:

Jack Christopher is one of five Grade I winners for Coolmore's Munnings. His dam is also represented by an

unnamed Mo Town 2-year-old filly and a Complexity filly of this year. She was bred back to Munnings. Rushin No Blushin, a maiden of eight career starts, was claimed for $50,000 out of her career finale by owner/trainer Neil Pessin at Keeneland in 2013. The half-sister to MGISW and useful sire Street Boss (Street Cry (Ire)) subsequently brought $70,000 from Castleton Lyons, in foal to Congrats, at the 2014 KEENOV sale.

Saturday, Saratoga
ALLEN JERKENS MEMORIAL S.-GI, $500,000, Saratoga, 8-27, 3yo, 7f, 1:21.15, ft.
1–JACK CHRISTOPHER, 124, c, 3, by Munnings
       1st Dam: Rushin No Blushin, by Half Ours
       2nd Dam: Blushing Ogygian, by Ogygian
       3rd Dam: Fruhlingshochzeit, by Blushing Groom (Fr)
($145,000 RNA Ylg '20 FTKSEL; $135,000 Ylg '20 FTKOCT).
O-Jim Bakke, Gerald Isbister, Coolmore Stud and Peter M.
Brant; B-Castleton Lyons & Kilboy Estate (KY); T-Chad C.
Brown; J-Jose L. Ortiz. $275,000. 'TDN Rising Star' Lifetime
Record: 6-5-0-1, $1,216,400. Werk Nick Rating: A. Click for
the eNicks report & 5-cross pedigree. Click for the free catalogue-style pedigree.
2–Gunite, 122, c, 3, Gun Runner–Simple Surprise, by Cowboy
Cal. O/B-Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC (KY); T-Steven M.
Asmussen. $100,000.
3–Runninsonofagun, 119, g, 3, Gun Runner–Golden Artemis,
by Malibu Moon. 1ST G1 BLACK TYPE. ($16,000 2yo '21
KEEJAN). O-The Estate of Scott Zimmerman; B-Dattt Farm
LLC (KY); T-John T. Toscano, Jr. $60,000.
Margins: 1 1/4, 2 3/4, 3 1/4. Odds: 0.55, 7.00, 41.00.
Also Ran: Conagher, Accretive, Happy Jack, Totalizer, Actuator. Scratched: Howling Time.
Click for the chart or the PPs. VIDEO, sponsored by TVG.


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