Amazombie in the Breeders' Cup Sprint.

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Amazombie in the Breeders' Cup Sprint.
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Mathea Kelley

Amazing Amazombie is Sprint Champ

Son of Northern Afleet got 201 first-place votes out of 248 votes cast.

Winning the Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Sprint (gr. I) Nov. 5 had been the flourishing finish to a splendid nine-race championship season for Amazombie that ran from late January to Nov. 5. Now the Cal-bred son of Northern Afleet  has wrapped up his 2011 season with a champion sprint male championship title.

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It was a strong finish for Amazombie, out of the In Excess mare Willshe Amaze, who got 201 first-place votes out of 248 votes cast. The other contenders were Caleb’s Posse (42 votes), Regally Ready (2), The Factor (2), and Jackson Bend (1).

Racing for owners Thomas Sanford and owner/trainer Bill Spawr, Amazombie made all of his starts, excluding the Breeders’ Cup, in speed-happy Southern California where he faced state-breds in three of his first four starts of the year, landing the rich Sunshine Millions Sprint Stakes at Santa Anita and the Tiznow Stakes at Hollywood Park during its Gold Rush Days program in late April. In between, Amazombie took down the Portero Grande Stakes (gr. II) going 6 1⁄2 furlongs at Santa Anita.

“This horse is the real deal,” said Spawr after the Portero Grande, the gelding’s first graded win. “If you don’t understand ‘perfect,’ just look at his body.”

While Amazombie wasn’t perfect from there on out, he was pretty close. On Memorial Day he finished first in the Los Angeles Handicap (gr. III) but was disqualified and placed third, then ran third behind sharpies Smiling Tiger and Euroears in the Triple Bend Handicap (gr. I) and Bing Crosby Stakes (gr. I), respectively. Given more than two months off, he returned with a strong score in Santa Anita’s Breeders’ Cup Sprint prep, the Ancient Title Stakes (gr. I), getting six furlongs in 1:08.24 before turning the tables on Euroears and the nation’s best in the Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Sprint.

For the year Amazombie recorded a 5-1-3 slate and earned $1,327,00. He raced on dirt, turf, and synthetic surfaces and was a perfect four-for-four on dirt.