Joseph Rauch and David Zell’s Capt. Candyman Can sparkled in his Churchill Downs debut while winning the Iroquois Stakes (gr. III) by three lengths Nov. 1. Four weeks later the son of Candy Ride tries to run them off their feet again, this time facing nine juvenile rivals in the $150,000 Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes (gr. II) Nov. 29 in Louisville.
Capt. Candyman Can, who was named after the Sammie Davis Jr. 1970s hit song, is the lone graded stakes winner in the Jockey Club, which along with its sister event–the $150,000 Golden Rod Stakes (gr. II)–highlights the 12-race “Stars of Tomorrow II” card at Churchill Downs. Post time for the 1 1/16-mile Jockey Club is set for 4:27 p.m. EDT.
A Kentucky homebred out of the Storm Creek mare Stormy Way, Capt. Candyman Can stalked the early pace under Julien Leparoux in the one-mile Iroquois, took over shortly after the half-mile marker, and easily drew away in a final time of 1:35.16. The bay gelding won for the second time in three starts for trainer Ian Wilkes and seems to have a promising future.
Leparoux, who has 50 wins this meet and is closing in on Pat Day’s Fall Meet record of 56, will have the return mount. He won this event aboard Anak Nakal last year. Capt. Candyman Can will break from post eight.
Among the contenders is John Oxley’s Beethoven, a winner of two of four lifetime starts, including an allowance victory at the same 1 1/16-mile distance Nov. 1 at Churchill while being ridden by Leparoux. Trained by John Ward Jr., Beethoven is a son of Sky Mesa
--Moonlight Sonata and was a $300,000 Keeneland September sale purchase last year. Calvin Borel gets the call this time.
Darley Stable’s Stormalory, who was beaten a neck by Beethoven in that allowance test, also returns for the event. The son of Storm Cat and Bill Mott trainee has won once in four starts.
Also by Storm Cat is Overbrook Farm’s homebred Big Surf. The Todd Pletcher trainee broke his maiden at second asking Nov. 12 in a one-mile test at Churchill. Jesus Castanon will ride.
Steve Asmussen, who recently broke his own record for most training victories in a single season, will saddle a pair of contenders. Winchell Thoroughbreds’ Zion and Zayat Stables’ Star of David both won in their debuts, but have dropped four straight since then. Zion, by Thunder Gulch, was seventh in the grade I Breeders’ Futurity this fall at Keeneland. Star of David, by Bernstein, was third to Capt. Candyman Can in the Iroquois.
Also of note is Coal Baron, who broke his maiden by 3 1/4 lengths at Churchill Nov. 5 while going 1 1/16 miles.
$150,000 Kentucky Jockey Club (gr. II, Race 11, 4:27 p.m.), 2-Year-Olds, 1 1/16 Miles
PP. Horse, Weight, Jockey
1. Coal Baron (KY), 122, Julio A. Garcia
2. Big Surf (KY), 122, Jesus Lopez Castanon
3. Beethoven (KY), 122, Calvin H. Borel
4. Stormalory (KY), 122, Kent J. Desormeaux
5. Jazzandthemagician (KY), 122, Miguel Mena
6. Zion (KY), 122, Shaun Bridgmohan
7. Brother Keith (KY), 122, Robby Albarado
8. Capt. Candyman Can (KY), 122, Julien R. Leparoux
9. Star of David (KY), 122, Jamie Theriot
10. Giant Oak (IL), 122, Eusebio Razo, Jr.