Finallymadeit takes on 6 in the Skip Away.

Finallymadeit takes on 6 in the Skip Away.

Jim Lisa Photos

Finallymadeit Heads Skip Away Field

Durable horse will make the 42nd start of his racing career.

The durable and talented Finallymadeit will be making the 42nd start of his racing career and his sixth during the current Gulfstream Park meeting when he takes on six challengers in the $100,000 Skip Away Stakes (gr. III) April 4. He will break from the No. 2 post with Eduardo Nunez, his regular rider, aboard.

Finallymadeit’s recent efforts have included runner-up finishes to Albertus Maximus  in the Jan. 31 Donn Handicap (gr. I) and Smooth Air in the March 14 Gulfstream Park Handicap (gr. II). In the Donn, Finallymadeit was beaten only a half-length.

“He breezed super the other day, and he’s trained really good (at Gulfstream) the whole time he’s been here,” said Elizabeth Turner, who assists Finallymadeit’s trainer, Javier Negrete.

A 5-year-old son of Concerto, Finallymadeit worked a mile at Calder Race Course in 1:44 2/5 March 28 in preparation for the 1 3/16-mile Skip Away.

“We’re very optimistic,” Negrete said. “He worked harder than any of us thought he would on Saturday. He worked very well.”

Finallymadeit, who got his name by overcoming disabilities as a foal that left him unable to walk, likes to run on the lead, but showed in the Gulfstream Park Handicap that he can still be a factor when he’s not out in front.

“This distance should be great because he should be able to relax out there,” Turner said. “He shouldn’t be rushed along going that far.”

Winner of the 2008 Fred W. Hooper Handicap (gr. III) at Calder and nine other added-money events, Finallymadeit was bred in Florida by Rolando Rodriguez and Rolbea Stables. The chestnut horse carries the colors of Rolbea Thoroughbred Racing.

Among Finallymadeit’s challengers in the Skip Away, which is for 4-years-olds and up, are Fierce Wind, winner of the March 7 Challenger Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs; Peruvian champion Tomcito, who was third in the 2008 Florida Derby (gr. I); and 2008 Commonwealth Turf Stakes (gr IIIT) winner Nistle's Crunch, who scored in a one-mile allowance/optional claiming event March 21 at Gulfstream in his most recent outing.

Rounding out the Skip Away field are Cool Gator, second in the 2007 Grey Breeders’ Cup Stakes (Can-III) and Coronation Futurity; Tizbig, second in the 2008 Dwyer Stakes (gr. II), Imawildandcrazyguy, winner of the 2008 Sumter Stakes at Calder and seventh behind Fierce Wind in the Challenger Stakes.

$100,000 Skip Away Stakes (gr. III,   5:24 p.m., Four Year Old and Upward, 1 3/16 Miles, Dirt
(Post,  Horse,  Age,  Sex,  Weight , Jockey)
1. Cool Gator (ON)    4    Colt    114    Christopher P. DeCarlo 
2. Finallymadeit (FL)   5    Horse   122    Eduardo O. Nunez 
3. Fierce Wind (KY)     4      Colt     120     Carlos H. Marquez, Jr. 
4. Tomcito (KY)    4    Colt    122     Jose Lezcano 
5. Tizbig (KY)     4    Colt     114     Javier Santiago 
6. Imawildandcrazyguy (FL)    5    Gelding     120    Manuel Aguilar 
7. Nistle's Crunch (NJ)    4    Colt    122     E.T. Baird