Belmont Pair Are Latest 'A' Lysters

Wayne Lyster always knew it to be miracle enough, for a farm this size, simply to get both into the starting gate. The Derby-Oaks double hadn't been accomplished since the heyday of Calumet, 70 years previously, and at Ashview, they foal out no more than a couple of dozen mares every spring. As such, Lyster can justly take pride in the fact that both Mo Donegal (Uncle Mo) and Nest (Curlin) finished their races so well, for fifth and second, respectively, that they are now converging instead on the GI...

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Sharp Tests the Resale Market

George Sharp, who made high-price horses of racing age purchases last year, will be in action as a seller at Wednesday's Fasig-Tipton Gulfstream Sale of Selected 2-Year-Olds in Training where he will offer two juveniles. The pair is part of a group of 12 yearlings he purchased at last year's Keeneland September sale. "I took a shot last year that, if I bought enough yearlings, maybe I could sell a few of them to pay for the rest," Sharp explained. While he is reoffering horses he bought just last fall,...

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Rotknee A New Stakes Winner for Runhappy in Damon Runyon

The progressive Rotknee (Runhappy) took his current winning streak to three, running out an easy winner of Sunday's Damon Runyon S. at the Big A. Drawn widest in a field of five, the homebred showed the best early speed and angled over to the fence in the opening furlong, forcing odds-on Best Idea (Honor Code) to be checked for half a stride. Going strongly on the engine beneath Manny Franco, Rotknee turned them in a couple of lengths to the good and kept on gamely to become the seventh stakes...

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Smile Happy Possible for Florida Derby

Lucky Seven Stable's Smile Happy (Runhappy) is among possible candidates for Gulfstream's GI Curlin Florida Derby Apr. 2, according to trainer Ken McPeek. Lucky Seven Stable also owns McPeek-trained Rattle N Roll (Connect), who is scheduled to make his 2022 debut in the GII Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth S. Mar. 5 at Gulfstream. Smile Happy had been expected to make his second start of the year in either the GI Toyota Blue Grass S. at Keeneland Apr. 9 or the GII Louisiana Derby at Fair Grounds Mar. 26. "You may...

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The Week in Review: Though Defeated a Huge Race for Smile Happy

The chart of the GII Risen Star S. run Saturday at the Fair Grounds will show you that the race was won by Epicenter (Not This Time) and that runner-up Smile Happy (Runhappy) was never a serious threat to win. It's just that there is a lot more to this story. Expectations were high for Smile Happy coming into the Risen Star. He was 2-for-2 last year and his win in the GII Kentucky Jockey Club S. came at the expense of Classic Causeway (Giant's Causeway) and White Abarrio (Race...

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Happy Soul Coasts to Victory in Dixie Belle

Only a 2 1/4-length defeat to eventual Grade II stakes-placed runner Nakatomi (Firing Line) against the boys on Keeneland debut Apr. 14 stands between Happy Soul and a perfect record. She has since been dominant against her peers, with a near 12-length victory May 13 at Belmont Park and a carbon-copy masterclass June 3 in the venue's Astoria S. as the 1-9 chalk. Making her 3-year-old bow here, the even-money favorite broke in line with the field and was asked to track the front-runner from third on the rail. Shoulder...

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'Rising Star' Happy Medium to Make Stakes Debut in Rescheduled Toboggan

Streaking 'TDN Rising Star' Happy Medium (Runhappy) will make his stakes debut against four rivals in Saturday's GIII Toboggan S. at Aqueduct. The 4-year-old Jay Em Ess Stable colorbearer has won three straight in impressive fashion, including an optional claimer by seven lengths with a 104 Beyer Speed Figure at the Big A last time Dec. 18. The seven-furlong Toboggan was pushed back a week after last Saturday's snow storm. "He's a very nice horse and we just have taken the logical steps to go along with him. We've gone...

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Nevin Taking Her Time With Happy Medium

Jay Em Ess Stable's Happy Medium (Runhappy) equaled his career-best 103 Beyer Speed Figure for 'TDN Rising Star'-worthy allowance victory (video) at Aqueduct Saturday. Happy Medium has gone 3-for-4 this year, his only loss coming in his debut where he finished third going seven furlongs at Aqueduct in March. "He's doing all the right things," trainer Michelle Nevin said of the sophomore. "We're very happy with him and we are taking each logical step as he's gone along and he's really shown up." Happy Medium earned his first 103 Beyer...

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Runhappy Gelding Runs up the Score Again; Garners Rising Stardom

Jay Em Ess Stable's Happy Medium (Runhappy) dominated for a third consecutive time Saturday to become the third 'TDN Rising Star' for the heating-up Runhappy. Third in his seven-panel unveiling here back in March, the $300,000 KEESEP yearling and May 20 foal resurfaced at Belmont Sept. 30 to air by 9 1/4 lengths and earn a gaudy 103 Beyer Speed Figure. He was flattered when three runners who finished behind him that day returned to graduate, and further validated his big win with a five-length allowance score in the local...

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Smiles, Everyone…Smiles

Smile Happy (Runhappy) built on a monster 'TDN Rising Star'-worthy debut victory on closing day at Keeneland Oct. 29 with an equally eye-catching score in Saturday's GII Kentucky Jockey Club S. Saturday at Churchill Downs, establishing himself as one of the early favorites for the GI Kentucky Derby about six months down the road. Welcome to Fantasy Island, Lucky Seven Stable. A generous 24-5 third favorite despite the domination of that towering 5 1/2-length graduation, Smile Happy landed in about fifth spot, just ahead of centerfield, as Street Sense S....

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Thursday's Insights: Unbeaten Nicky the Vest Returns at the Big A

3rd-AQU, $74k, OC45k/N2X, (S), 3yo/up, 1m, post tme: 1:19 p.m. ET NICKY THE VEST (Runhappy), sidelined since running his record to a perfect two-for-two with a runaway score versus state-breds in the Gander S. Feb. 14, returns to action at the Big A Thursday. The New York-bred, forced to miss the GII Wood Memorial S. due to a knee chip, faces seven rivals in a state-bred optional claimer with first-time Lasix in his comebacker. Both of his previous wins came over this same track and trip. "He had trained like...

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Runhappy Colt Runs to 'TDN Rising Stardom' at Keeneland

Smile Happy (c, 2, Runhappy--Pleasant Smile, by Pleasant Tap) became the second 'TDN Rising Star' for young sire Runhappy with this visually impressive debut score around two turns at Keeneland Friday. The dark bay fired a five-furlong bullet in :59 2/5 (1/57) for Ken McPeek at Churchill Downs Oct. 22 and was backed at 3-1 in this 1 1/16-mile affair. He raced in some traffic on the first turn and settled on the inside in sixth. Locked and loaded heading into the far turn, the Lucky Seven Stable colorbearer split...

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