(From Turfway Park)
Parade Clown got a wise ride from veteran rider Bill Troilo Feb. 7 at Turfway Park to take home the $50,000 WEBN Stakes trophy. It was the first stakes win for the son of Distorted Humor and a decisive step toward the Lane’s End Stakes (gr. II) next month.
Music City, the 2-1 favorite, rocketed out of the gate to get the early lead, while Parade Clown, a bit green, pushed up from fourth to within half a length of the lead heading into the backstretch. Troilo settled him down, and when Music City moved suddenly to open up a three or four length lead down the backstretch, Parade Clown let him go.
"(Music City) kind of spurted off at the turn, and I didn’t want to ask my horse for a full out drive for 3 1/2 furlongs,” said Troilo. “So I just sat on him, sat on him, and by the time I got to the quarter-pole, it looked like (Music City) was coming back to me. It seemed like every time I asked this horse, he gave me more. Even when I was galloping out, horses were coming to him and he took off again.”
Troilo moved Parade Clown to Music City’s outside straightening for home, passed the leader just inside the eighth-pole, and continued on to win by 2 3/4 lengths. Music City held second, 11 1/4 lengths ahead of 71-1 long shot Dynamite Bob. Sundays Baby Grand, an even longer shot at nearly 82-1, topped off the superfecta.
Parade Clown finished the one-mile WEBN in 1:40.73 after Music City’s easy fractions of :24.16, :47.91, and 1:13.14. The 3-1 third choice, he paid $8 for the win.
Completing the order of finish were Toccet Rocket, Platinum Van, Babamoon, Azicharmyou, Scrimpy, Sirius Black, Dixiessaltshaker, and Our Bonanza.
Winning trainer Katherine Ball knew she had something in Parade Clown when he finally put things together and won his third start. “When he broke his maiden, he was way out of it and made a big run and beat a horse he wasn’t supposed to beat, so we got kind of excited,” she said. “In the first turn today he took off with Billy, but that just shows that he’s still learning from race to race.”
Ball trains Parade Clown for Donamire Farm. The gray colt now has two wins and one second from five career starts and earnings of $48,760.
The WEBN Stakes is the second of Turfway’s three races for 3-year-olds that comprise the local path to the Lane’s End Stakes, a prep for the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I). The first, the Turfway Prevue, ran Jan.3, and the last, the 1 1/16-mile Battaglia Memorial, will run Feb. 28. Ball said she plans to bring Parade Clown back for the Battaglia Memorial.
The Lane’s End Stakes, scheduled six weeks before the Kentucky Derby, is March 21.