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Kentucky Derby and Horse Racing at The Downey Profile®

We Miss Artie in Derby Picture with Spiral Win

3/22/2014

By Dick Downey
@DowneyProfile
Photo by Turfway Park


In a blanket finish, We Miss Artie got up in the shadow of the wire to win the Spiral Stakes at Turfway Park. Harry's Holiday was second by a nose and Coastline third by a neck.

Timed in 1:52.26 under John Velazquez, We Miss Artie picked up 50 Kentucky Derby points to push his total to 60 for owners Ken and Sarah Ramsey and trainer Todd Pletcher.

Harry's Holiday wasn't early-nominated to the Triple Crown but will have 20 points if late-nominated by 11:59 p.m. ET on Spiral day. Coastline got 10 points in the Spiral and now has 13 in all. Asserting Bear picked up five Derby points.

We Miss Artie was seventh a half-mile into the 1 1/8-mile Spiral, but only 3 1/4 lengths back of a split of :47.21 set by Almost Famous and Battaglia Memorial winner Solitary Ranger. We Miss Artie and Velazquez made a long, sustained run that started going into the far turn with six furlongs in the book in 1:12.43. Velazquez steered him five wide, and they were five wide coming into the lane.

Harry's Holiday, always prominent, had the lead in the far turn and looked like the winner as the finish line neared. Coastline, who never was far back, was breathing down his neck, but We Miss Artie got up just in time.

Asserting Bear was beaten two lengths, and he was followed at the finish by Big Bazinga, All Tied Up, Arctic Slope. Tamarando, Solitary Ranger, Poker Player, Almost Famous and Smart Cover. A total of 36 lengths separated the first and last finishers.

Tamarado, the 2-1 favorite, is a confirmed closer. He was 11 1/2 lengths off the lead after the first quarter-mile but never got closer than an eight-length deficit and was beaten 11 1/2 lengths. Solitary Ranger led at the first call, dueled with Almost Famous, then Harry's Holiday, but regressed to a 14 1/2-length defeat. Poker Player, a closing second in the Battaglia, never made any impact at all and was beaten 17 1/2 lengths.

The 7-2 second choice at the betting windows, We Miss Artie paid $9.20 to win, $5.80 to place and $4.20 to show. The purse for the Spiral was $518,950 with $282,000 going to the winner.

We Miss Artie returned to winning ways in his first start on a synthetic surface since he took the Dixiana Breeders' Futurity last October at Keeneland.

After finishing second in his Belmont Park debut, We Miss Artie won at second asking going 1 1/16 mile on the turf at Saratoga on Aug. 11. He disappointed in a sixth-place effort as the 5-2 favorite in the With Anticipation Stakes on Aug. 29. After the Dixiana win, We Miss Artie finished seventh in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf to close out his 2-year-old campaign.  

In his first outing of 2014, Storming Inti beat We Miss Artie by a head in the Kitten's Joy Stakes on Gulfstream Park's turf course. On Feb. 22, he was beaten 17 1/2 lengths in the Fountain of Youth Stakes on dirt at Gulfstream.

Ken Ramsey said after the Spiral from Florida that he thinks We Miss Artie has the potential to duplicate Animal Kingdom's 2011 performance in the Kentucky Derby. Animal Kingdom won the Spiral that year.

We Miss Artie is the rare successful Ramsey runner not sired by his stallion Kitten's Joy. By Artie Schiller, We Miss Artie was purchased by the Ramsey's for  $90,000 at the  Keeneland September 2012 Yearling Sale. He was bred in Ontario by Richard L. Lister and is out of the Fusachi Pegasus mare Athena's Gift.

Only two Canadian-bred's have won the Kentucky Derby, Northern Dancer in 1964 and Sunny's Halo in 1983.

The winning colt is named for Sarah Ramsey’s cousin’s husband Artie, who died not long before We Miss Artie was named.

Equibase chart

CONNECTIONS QUOTES

John Velazquez: “I was a little wide going into the first turn but I found a nice spot down the backside. Right at the sixteenth-pole I had to drift away from them so he didn’t have to work so hard. Then I was able to get up at the wire.”

Todd Pletcher: “It really was...very exciting. I wasn’t sure he got there but very excited to see that he did. It looked like speed was holding up all day. Johnny had him in a good place and it looked like he was finishing steadily, but it was just a matter of whether he would get there.

Kentucky Derby? “I don’t think that will be much of a discussion -- Mr. Ramsey. We were hoping he could get us there, and he did.”

Jeff Ramsey, son of Ken and Sarah Ramsey: “We really liked him today. He won a grade I on the Polytrack before and he was training really well. I didn’t really think we had it. It was very exciting. My dad wasn’t here when Dean’s Kitten won (the Spiral in 2010); he was in Dubai. He is in Florida watching it on TV. Hopefully we’ll get a really good trip in the Derby. He’s been training on the dirt and getting better. He didn’t like the Fountain of Youth. That track’s a little different than Churchill.”

Rose Napravnik, aboard Harry’s Holiday: “I kind of thought Johnny had me on the outside. I was afraid he nipped us right at the end. But my horse did a great job. He was totally passed by (Coastline) and came back and stuck his nose out in front and ran a great race. It’s a speed favoring track, and the outside is better and that’s where you got to be.”

Mark Casse, trainer of Coastline: “He came up six inches short of winning the race, but I was very happy. He definitely ran a big effort and we know he likes Churchill and he also likes Keeneland. It looked like we were going to get by.”

Stewart Elliott, aboard Coastline: “We had a great trip. When we turned for home I thought we were going to win it.”

Russell Baze, aboard Tamarando: “He didn’t get a lot of speed. When I asked him to go, he went for a bit at the eighth pole and then quit.”

 

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