Bullsbay , a 5-year-old son of Tiznow , benefitted from a rail-skimming ride by Jeremy Rose to wear down Cool Coal Man and win the $170,400 Alysheba Stakes (gr. III) (VIDEO) by three-quarters of a length on the Kentucky Oaks undercard May 1 at Churchill Downs.
Informed jumped out of the gate on the lead while stalked by Cool Coal Man and Star Guitar through soft early fractions of :24.55 and :48.72 through the first half mile. The leaders remained unchanged after six furlongs had been completed in 1:13.57 in the 1 1/16-mile test over a main track rated good.
Rounding the second turn, the stalkers caught pacesetter Informed and Cool Coal Man, ridden by John Velazquez, led into the stretch. Bullsbay and Rose, hugging the inside all the way, rallied along the rail to catch Cool Coal Man midstretch. Bullsbay proved best under urging while getting the distance in final time of 1:44.29 on a track upgraded to fast prior to the race.
Cool Coal Man finished second by one length over Star Guitar, ridden by Corey Lanerie.
Favored Macho Again, carrying top weight of 124 pounds, was far back early and commenced a wide bid with three furlongs to run. But he never challenged while finishing sixth.
Owned by Steven C. Mitchell’s Mitchell Ranch, Frank Lewkowitz and Joe Rice, the winner was produced from the Lord Carson mare The Hess Express. He was purchased for $130,000 from the Paramount Sales consignment to the 2005 Keeneland September yearling sale.
Bullsbay earned his first graded stakes win in the Alysheba. Bred in Kentucky by Brad Anderson, the bay horse has now won six of 15 career starts, with five second-place finishes and one third. Previous to the Alysheba, the horse finished second in the Hal’s Hope (gr. III) at Gulstream Park and John B. Campbell Handicap at Laurel before winning Laurel’s Harrison E. Johnson Memorial.
The victory, worth $101,422, increased Bullsbay's lifetime earnings to $335,335.
Sent off as the second choice in the field of nine, Bullsbay packed 118 pounds and paid $8.40, $4.60 and $3.60. Cool Coal Man, coming off a runner-up showing in Aqueduct's Excelsior Handicap April 4 for trainer Nick Zito, returned $5.60 and $4.40. Louisiana-bred Star Guitar was $7.80 to show.
Informed held on for fourth, followed by Mambo in Seattle, Macho Again, Dr. Pleasure, Prom Shoes and Shift in Power. Ready Se scratched.