20 August 2017, USA ~ The third race in the US triumvirate of the USA Triple Jewel, the Diamond Jewel, goes off at Monmouth Park, New Jersey, on 4 September 2017. The current lead in race points for the Triple Jewel is Paddys Day, already twice winner of the $150,000 bonus for high points in 2015 and 2016.
The Monmouth Park race is setting up to be a duel between Burning Sand sons, Paddys Day (Burning Sand by a Virgule Al Maury daughter), and Easter Man (Burning Sand x Angel Proof by NF Proof). The two have already met 3 times in 2017 with Easter Man up 2 to 1 over Paddys Day.
It was 1 April 2017 at Santa Anita, California, when the two horses had their first contest of the year. In this Grade 1 HH Sheikha Fatima Stakes, Paddys Day, with champion jockey Victor Espinoza on board, won a decisive victory over Easter Man (2nd) backed by Edwin Maldonado on the 1 1/16 mile track. The win time was 1:54:77 and the prize money was $100,000.
The two met up again in Delaware on 24 July 2017 for the 1 1/16 mile Arabian Allowance, Easter Man backed by Carol Cedeno and Paddys Day ridden by Ricardo Chiappe. This time it was the five-yr-old Easter Man winning by a bit more than a length although Paddys Day was in the lead until overtaken in the stretch where the bay did not have quite enough left to gain the win.
The rivals met again on 19 August at Delaware Park for the Arabian Classic Gr 1. The outcome was very similar to 24 July with Easter Man taking the win from the six-yr-old Paddys Day ridden this time by Scott Spieth. The 1 1/4 mile race win time was 2:16:15
In between the two races against Easter Man, on 10 August Paddys Day took control of the Delaware Park Arabian Allowance, a 1 1/8 mile race, owning the win from start to finish. The win time was 2:01:34.
Scott and Lori Powell say this about the two horses: “They are 2 and 2, not 2 and 1. Paddy went to Houston on the first leg of the Triple Jewel and took Easter Man and Jerenesto out on their own turf, which is not an easy thing to do. Then Paddy prevailed in Santa Anita. Easterman never even showed for the second leg of the Jewel and concentrated on the two races in Delaware. The first race he won was no surprise to us as we gave Paddy time off as it’s impossible to keep a horse peaked all the time without repercussions.”
Here’s your 4 September Cheat Sheet:
There will essentially be two competitions at Delaware: one will be for the $50,000 Gr 1 race win, the other will be for the $150,000 Triple Jewel high-point bonus. Regardless of the race winner, Paddys Day has 16 points for 2 wins (Houston, TX and Pleasanton, California.)
8 points for 1st
7 points to the 2nd
6 points to the 3rd
5 points to finish
Paddys Day – 16 points for wins at Houston and Pleasanton (+minimum 5 points for 4 Sept finish?) = 21
Easter Man – 7 points for 2nd place finish Houston (+maximum 8 points for win?) = 15
Quick Sand AA – 6 points for third place finish Houston and 5 points for finish at Pleasanton = 11 (+maximum 8 points for win?) = 19
Sand Victor – 5 points for finish Houston and 7 points for 2nd at Pleasanton = 12 (+maximum 8 points for win?) = 20
Will this make a difference? The HH Sheikh Mansoor bin Zayed Al Nayhan Flat Racing Festival and the Wathba Stallion Series has announced that, effective immediately, all sponsored races will be Lasix free.
Delaware win photo supplied by E.A.R.A.
Photo credit: Hoofprints, Inc.