People rushed into the winner’s circle, chanting “Venezuela, Venezuela,” and waving that South American country’s flags after Stud Jabces’ Heisenberg won the 44th Clasico Internacional del Caribe (Pan-I) Dec. 11 in Panama. Leading much of the way in the 1,800-meter race, the even-money favorite triumphed by 1 1/4 lengths at Hipodromo Presidente Remon on a wet, humid afternoon.
“I knew that I had a lot of horse, and I needed to control him,” said Heisenberg’s jockey, Emisael Jaramillo, through a translator. “When he feels a horse behind him, he tries to put two or three lengths between him and that other horse. But on the final turn, I set my horse free and let him run along, and the race was over. I knew he would win.”
Jaramillo’s victory was his second in a row and third overall in the Clasico del Caribe. He is tied with Cornelio Velasquez as the race’s winningest rider. Jaramillo’s other triumphs came in 2010 aboard Water Jet and 2000 with My Own Business.
Bred in Venezuela by Haras La Primavera, Heisenberg had raced 11 times previously this year and had won eight in a row. The dark bay gelding broke from the far outside post in the $300,000 Clasico del Caribe’s field of nine 3 year-olds, but got into gear quickly. According to Heisenberg’s trainer, Santos Mario Dominguez, that was the key to the runner’s victory.
Heisenberg and Desbocado, representing Panama, battled for the early lead and it didn’t take Heisenberg long to get in front for good. After he did, he hung tough and didn’t give up his advantage.
Heisenberg’s winning time was 1:54 and he became the third Venezuelan runner in a row to take the Clasico del Caribe. Bambera started the streak in 2009. In all, 11 horses representing Venezuela have scored in the race.
Desbocado finished second, 2 ¾ lengths in front of another Panamanian runner, Provenzzano. Arameo, representing Mexico, was fourth, and 2011 Puerto Rican Triple Crown winner Don Paco was fifth after winning 13 consecutive races.
Following them under the wire were Piegari and Predathor, both representing Panama; Doctortico, representing Mexico; and Bronsted of Venezuela.
There were two late scratches. The 6-5 morning line favorite, Mexican champion Veritas, was sidelined by colic and the race’s only filly, Venezuela’s Miss Santona, had a tendon problem. Murano Plus, who was listed in the program as “eligible” for the event, was an earlier scratch.
Even though Heizenberg hails from South America, his pedigree is full of North American influences. His dam, Ainara, is a daughter of Zajal, who is by 1977 Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew. Ainara’s dam, Lady Tanker, was sired by 1985 Preakness Stakes (gr. I) winner Tank's Prospect.
Heizenberg’s sire, the winner Seek Smartly, is by 1988 Super Derby (gr. I) and Dwyer Stakes (gr. I) winner Seeking the Gold. Seek Smartly’s dam, Dance Smartly (by Danzig), was Canada’s Horse of the Year in 1991, when she captured that country’s Triple Crown. She also was a 1991 Eclipse Award winner.
Dance Smartly was Canada’s 2001 Broodmare of the Year and her offspring, in addition to Seek Smartly, included Dancethruthedawn (by Mr. Prospector), a Canadian champion who scored in the 2001 Queen’s Plate in Canada and 2002 Go for Wand Handicap (gr. I); Scatter the Gold (by Mr. Prospector), who won the 2000 Queen’s Plate and Prince of Wales Stakes in Canada; and Canadian grade II winner Dance With Ravens (by A.P. Indy).