Reedini breaks his maiden at Ellis Park – Coady Photography
Ellis Park Press Release: Ellis Park last summer launched Brody’s Cause on his way to running in the 2015 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile and this year’s Kentucky Derby. And the two-time Grade 1 winner got beat here.
Now, Jason Loutsch, racing manager for Dennis Albaugh’s Albaugh Family Stable, hopes Ellis does the same for their 2-year-olds Not This Time and Reedini, both dominant winners here in their second career starts Friday.
Loutsch said Not This Time, a 10-length winner in Friday’s mile maiden race, likely will be pointed for Churchill Downs’ Sept. 17 Iroquois, a 1 1/16-mile race whose winner gets a fees-paid berth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. Reedini likely will go elsewhere, possibly Saratoga’s $350,000 Hopeful (G1) on Labor Day at seven furlongs. Both horses are trained by Dale Romans.
“Not This Time is a homebred, a half-brother to Liam’s Map, and we’ve been excited about him, knowing for a while that he has a lot of potential,” said Loutsch, who also is Albaugh’s son in law. “We were a little disappointed in his first start (at Churchill Downs) because he broke so bad and didn’t have a chance. But the winner (Bitumen) came back and won a Grade 3 at Saratoga. He was training great out of the race, so we expected a big effort and got it.
“We’re really excited to go into the fall and hopefully he continues to get better and gives us a lot of excitement going into next year. The other colt, we’re going to look at some options. The Hopeful is an option, maybe something seven furlongs around here if we can find it.”
Brody’s Cause last summer lost his racing debut by 25 lengths on the Ellis turf, then in his next three starts win a maiden race and Keeneland’s Grade 1 Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity before finishing a late-running third in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. This year he won the Grade I Toyota Blue Grass at Keeneland. Loutsch said getting to the Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita “absolutely” is the goal and that they’d also like to run again in the Breeders’ Futurity.
“The horses will tell us; we’re not going to press them,” Loutsch said. “Our ultimate goal is next year.”
Albaugh also owns Unbridled Outlaw, who won at Ellis last summer in his second start and went on to run in the Breeders’ Cup and Arkansas Derby.
“Last year we had so much fun with Brody and Outlaw going to the Breeders’ Cup, and Brody going to the Kentucky Derby, Loutsch said. “The first goal is to see if we can become a 2-year-old champion and get to the Breeders’ Cup. We’ve never run a horse at Santa Anita, so that was on our bucket list this year. We sent some quality 2-year-olds to Dale, and we have a couple more in the barn that we are really excited about. And these are the first two to get going.”
Loutsch said other Albaugh 2-year-olds to watch are J Boys Echo and Watch Me Whip. J Boys Echo (named for Loutsch) is a $485,000 Keeneland yearling purchase sired by Horse of the Year Mineshaft and out of Grade 2 winner Letgomyecho, who is also the dam of Unbridled Outlaw. Watch Me Whip is a $330,000 Keeneland yearling by Smart Strike.
“They’re bred to get better as the age and go two turns,” Loutsch said of their 2-olds. “We don’t buy sprinters, we buy horses that can go the distance.
Loutsch praised Ellis’ 2-year-old program, saying, “Dale and I talk about that every year. You can go up to Saratoga and run with the big boys. Our program, we want to be running as 3-year-olds and have a great campaign. We just love going to Ellis Park. They treat us well, for 1. For 2, the competition, we’re looking to get some confidence. (But) the competition is getting better and better; the purses are getting better so that’s going to attract better horses. But we feel it’s a great starting point for our horses. We don’t want to press on our 2-year-olds in the first and second starts of their lives. We want them to get comfortable and get a good experience, and Ellis is in our backyard.”
Loutsch confirmed with a laugh that the source of Not This Time’s name is the determination not to sell a son of Albaugh’s classy distaff sprinter Miss Macy Sue, as they did for $800,000 for the colt who turned out to be Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile winner Liam’s Map, a $1.35 million-earner whose six wins in eight starts included Saratoga’s prestigious Woodward.
“We’ve sold one horse in our lifetime, and that happened to be Liam’s Map,” Loutsch said. “So we said, ‘Not this time.’ But couldn’t be happier for what Liam did and what he did for our mare. We’re really excited about him as a stallion.”
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