Philly 'aces' Tropical Turf
Date Posted: 11/30/2012 5:09:10 PM
Last Updated: 12/6/2012 1:58:06 PM
Brushwood Stable's homebred Philly Ace bided his time down on the rail during
Friday's Calder's closing-day co-feature -- the Grade 3, $100,000
Handicap -- before running down pacesetting 9-5 favorite Hollinger to post a
The Christophe Clement trainee entered the Tropical Turf off a third in the
Grade 2 Red Smith Handicap at Aqueduct on November 3, and settled along the rail
under jockey Luis Saez as Hollinger set splits of :24 2/5, :50 and 1:14 3/5. The
leader was pressured the entire way by Empire Builder and Good Better Best to
his outside as well as Sleepless Knight just behind on his heels.
As the field entered the lane, Hollinger was briefly passed by Empire Builder
before fighting back to regain the lead. The gray gelding kept motoring, but
Philly Ace was moving too good and passed his five-year-old rival to stop the
clock in 1:49 1/5 for 1 1/8 miles on the firm turf.
Philly Ace was the 3-1 second choice in the nine-horse field and returned
$8.60, $4 and $2.60. Hollinger held second by 1 3/4 lengths over Empire Builder,
who was followed under the wire by Hoofit, Alley Oop Oop, Sleepless Knight, Good
Better Best, Dannhauser and Scorcher. Citrus Kid and Mr. Irons were both
Philly Ace just earned his first stakes score on September 22 at Parx Racing,
gutting out a nose decision in the Alphabet Soup Handicap prior to his Red Smith
run. The gelded son of Smart Strike also boasts a second in the Robellino Stakes
at Penn National on August 3, and now owns a 7-2-2 mark from 14 career starts.
The winner's share from the Tropical Turf boosted his lifetime earnings to
The Pennsylvania-bred four-year-old is out of the stakes-placed Polish Numbers
mare Bloomy, who has also produced Group 3-placed multiple stakes winner Spring
of Fame, dual stakes-placed Slambino and listed-placed Leopolis. Bloomy is
herself a daughter of 1978 champion Late Bloomer and counts as half-siblings
Grade 1 scorer Ends Well and Grade 2 victor Fred Astaire, who finished third in
the 1986 Breeders' Cup Mile.
Philly Ace's third dam is 1985 Broodmare of the Year Dunce Cap II, whose
descendents include Grade 2 stars Johnny Appleseed, Del Mar Dennis and Forty
Niner Days as well as multiple Grade 3 veteran Late Act.
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