Ramsey Farm's homegrown sire Kitten's Joy was the big winner among stallions over the stakes-heavy, three-day weekend that kicked off the United States' classic season.
Three graded stakes winners represented the 15-year-old son of El Prado in races on both coasts May 6-7.
Delivering the biggest score was Divisidero, a 4-year-old bay colt out of Madame Du Lac (by Lemon Drop Kid ), who won the May 7 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic Stakes (gr. IT) at Churchill Downs. Divisidero is owned by Gunpowder Farms and was bred in Kentucky by Hinkle Farms. That the colt would win his first grade I at Churchill Downs May 7 on the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) undercard was appropriate considering he won his first graded stakes a year earlier at Churchill in the grade II American Turf Stakes on Derby day. Divisidero has now won four times in eight starts and placed in three other graded stakes. He's earned $678,850.
Ken and Sarah Ramsey's homebred Camelot Kitten scored the other major win of the weekend, simultaneously capturing his first stakes and first graded stakes victory in the American Turf by a head over Beach Patrol (Lemon Drop Kid—Bashful Bertie, by Quiet American). Camelot Kitten is out of Celestial Woods (by Forestry) and is a full brother to grade I winner Bobby's Kitten and to stakes winner Major Magic.
Home Run Kitten, bred by the Ramseys and raced by Tarabilla Farms, won the third stakes of the weekend May 6, taking an off-the-turf running of the American Stakes at Santa Anita Park. The 5-year-old horse out of Grand Slam Girl (by Grand Slam) won the $100,000 stakes by a half-length over Michael Lynch's homebred Little Curlin (Curlin —Hoh Buzzard, by Alhaarth). Carded at a mile on the turf, the American Stakes carries grade III status but was run as an ungraded stakes because it had been moved to the main track. All turf races are automatically downgraded by one level for that running only in these circumstances. The American Graded Stakes Committee reviewed the race and determined May 11 that the grade III would be reinstated.
Another sire to have a big weekend was Lane's End Farm's City Zip, who had two graded stakes winners—Catch a Glimpse, in the May 6 1 1⁄16-mile Edgewood Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Churchill Downs; and Stays in Vegas, who won the one-mile Senorita Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Santa Anita Park on Derby day.
Catch a Glimpse, Canada's 2015 Horse of the Year, champion 2-year-old filly, and champion turf female, has now won three consecutive graded stakes this year. The filly out of Halo River (by Irish River) is owned by Gary Barber, Michael Ambler, and Windways Farm. She was bred in Kentucky by Branch Equine.
Stays in Vegas is a 3-year-old filly out of Double Jackpot (by Broken Vow ), who was bred in Kentucky by John McCormack. She is owned by Jim Rome's Jungle Racing in partnership with KMN Racing and LNJ Foxwoods. The Senorita was Stays in Vegas' first race of the year and her first graded stakes win.