Catching Up: Round-Up of Saratoga Two-Year-Old Races

What else does one do on a rainy Saturday than work on some long, long, LONG overdue website updates?

Here, a collection of the two-year-old maiden winners I covered at Saratoga for Brisnet/TwinSpires. Here’s hoping we’ll hear more from these babies…

Takecharge Mirella 

Owner: Big Dom Racing Stable

Trainer: Kiaran McLaughlin

Breeder: Cantrell Family Partnership

Jockey: Joe Bravo

“This was a special win for us,” said owner Dominic Fuda, choked up. “It was Brian that made the call to run here.”

Spirit Animal and Chad Brown’s record-setting 41st win

Owner: Klaravich Stables

Breeder: Caldara Farm Inc.

Jockey: José Ortiz

“[My parents have] been big supporters of mine,” Chad Brown said. “They got me into this, taking me to the picnic area many years ago. They’ve really been a mainstay every day of the meet here, being with me and being around my staff. We’re all just a big family and they are very excited as well.”

NYRA photo

Achilles Warrior 

Owner: David Merjan

Trainer: Mark Hennig

Breeder: JSM Equine

Jockey: Javier Castellano

“I can’t even describe it,” marveled Merjan, watching the replay. “My first win. At Saratoga, with a two-year-old that Mark picked out and bought.”



Owner: Klaravich Stables

Trainer: Chad Brown

Breeder: Times of Wigan Ltd

Jockey: Irad Ortiz Jr.

“She identified herself as potentially being special about a month ago, when we really let her stretch her legs out and see what she had,” said Brown. “We were having trouble finding partners for her to work with.”

Cairo Cat, Network Effect, and Unionizer

Cairo Cat owned by Walking L Thoroughbreds; trained by Ken McPeek; bred by Clifton Farm, LLC; ridden by David Cohen

Network Effect owned by Klaravich Stables; trained by Chad Brown; bred by Louis Jolin; ridden by Javier Castellano

Unionizer owned by Peter Vegso; trained by Bill Mott; bred by Vegso Racing Stable; ridden by Junior Alvarado

Exercise rider and assistant trainer Danny Ramsey on Cairo Cat: “He’s nice. He’s smooth. He’s aggressive on the track. That’s all you can ask for in a baby.”


Lady TNT. NYRA photo.

Sippican Harbor, Slieve Mish, Lady TNT Brucia La Terra

Sippican Harbor owned by Lee Pokoik; trained by Gary Contessa; bred by Justin Spaeth, Kalvert Spaeth & Equine Equity Partners, LLC; ridden by Joel Rosario

Gary Contessa on Sippican Harbor’s maiden win: “Whatever she does, she does unbelievable.”

Slieve Mish owned by Waterville Lake Stable; trained by Christophe Clement; bred by Stonehaven Steadings; ridden by Joel Rosario.

Lady TNT owned by Scott and Evan Dilworth; trained by Joe Sharp; bred by Castleton Lyons; ridden by Manuel Franco

Brucia La Terra owned by William M. Ferrone; trained by Barclay Tagg; bred by Sallyellen M. Hurst & Hugh H. Hurst; ridden by Manuel Franco.


Owner: Klaravich Stables

Trainer: Chad Brown

Breeder: Wolverton Mountain Farm LLC & Cameron Wheeler

Jockey: Irad Ortiz Jr

“She’s always been a really classy filly to work around and had a tremendous attitude to her training and to life in general,” Nick de Meric. “She’s very sweet with people and as you like to see in these young fillies, she’s easy on herself. She eats well and she rests when she’s supposed to, which makes everything so much easier.”

Casa Creed and Mucho

Casa Creed owned by LRE Racing; trained by Bill Mott; bred by Silver Springs Stud; ridden by Junior Alvarado

Mucho owned and bred by Claiborne Farm & Adele B. Dilschneider; trained by Bill Mott; ridden by José Ortiz.

“I trained Mucho’s mother and I trained a half-sister to him,” said Mott, “so it’s gratifying to have the family.”

Carter Cat and Absolutely Aiden

Carter Cat owned by Winchell Thoroughbreds and Willis Horton Racing; trained by Steve Asmussen; bred by Woods Edge Farm; ridden by Ricardo Santana Jr.

Absolutely Aiden owned by Dream Baby Dream Racing Stable; trained by Steve Asmussen; bred by John H. Clarke, Kim Nardelli & Rodney Nardelli; ridden by Ricardo Santana Jr.

“Dream Baby Dream racing manager John Cilia: “To win a maiden at Saratoga, that’s a big thing in racing. It’s been a while since we’ve been in the winner’s circle, so this is great.”

Chocolate Kisses

Owner: Debbie M. Oxley

Trainer: Mark Casse

Breeder: Pin Oak Stud

Jockey: Irad Ortiz Jr.

“Last season we had I don’t know how many seconds we had,” said Oxley. “We couldn’t get a win. It’s a nice way to start the meet.”

Nitrous and Seanow

Nitrous owned by Winchell Thoroughbreds and Stonestreet Stables; trained by Steve Asmussen; bred by Winchell Thoroughbreds; ridden by Ricardo Santana Jr.

Asmussen described Nitrous as “talented, well-meant, and headed for Saratoga’s graded stakes.”

Seanow owned and bred by Wertheimer and Frère; trained by Todd Pletcher; ridden by John Velazquez. 


NYRA/Susie Raisher

Lyrical Lady

Owner: Phoenix Thoroughbred III

Trainer: Steve Asmussen

Breeder: Centaur Farms, Inc.

Jockey: Ricardo Santana Jr.

“She is who we planned on running in the first maiden,” Asmussen said. “She wasn’t a secret.”






























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