After winning the Natalma with an 8-1 shot Catch a Glimpse an hour earlier, trainer Mark Casse came back two races later to take the $226,400, Grade 2 Summer Stakes, another Breeders’ Cup Win and You’re In event, with an even bigger longshot, 15-1 Conquest Daddyo, Saturday at Woodbine.
Ridden for the first time by Joe Bravo, Conquest Daddyo, one of two in the race for Casse and Conquest Stables, powered up to challenge leader Manhattan Dan in mid-stretch, then pulled away to win by one and three-quarter lengths over Sky Marshal.
Manhattan Dan hung on for third in the one mile contest for two-year-olds, while Conquest Enforcer, the more highly-regarded Conquest runner, was a good fourth in his debut after threatening the leaders in mid-stretch.
Conquest Daddyo, an Ontario-bred son of Scat Daddy-Hangingbyamoment who cost $350,000 as a yearling, had come into the Summer off a maiden win in July and a closing runner-up finish in the Vandal Stakes on August 15, both over Woodbine’s Polytrack. But he was making his turf debut in the Summer against some well-respected runners, like the 5-2 favourite The Zip Zip Man, Hammers Vision and his stablemate.
Manhattan Dan and jockey Emma-Jayne Wilson took the field through early fractions of :22.74, :46.25 and 1:11.06 over a ‘good’ turf course. Meanwhile, Bravo had Conquest Daddyo back in eighth until the field came off the far turn. Sweeping to the front on the outside by mid-stretch, Conquest Daddyo repulsed a late charge by Sky Marshal to post the victory timed in 1:36.61.
Manhattan Dan, who was still in front when the field turned into the long E.P. Taylor Turf Course stretch, hung on for third while Conquest Enforcer tired late to finish fourth.
“You can’t make this stuff up,” said Bravo. “I was on eight races at Kentucky Downs today and the card was cancelled last night. I figured I had the day off. Thanks, Mark.’
“What a cool little horse. He was so quiet and relaxed. Down the backside I watched the race unfold and he was so content and in charge of everything. When we got to the top of the lane I asked him and he was there for us. The whole race he was like that, in control of it all.
“Did you see the move he put on those horses? He made the lead a lot faster than I expected. I wish I knew him a little better. I hope I get to sit on him next time because he has a real turn of foot if you let him get into himself.”
For Casse and Conquest Stables, it was their third consecutive Summer win, following victories by My Conquestadory in 2013 in her racing debut and last year by Conquest Typhoon.
Dragon Bay was a gate scratch, leaving a field of nine hopefuls.
The win by Conquest Daddyo was not only worth $144,000 to his owners, but he also earned a berth into the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf, Friday, October 30 at Keeneland.
“Obviously, we loved the other horse (Conquest Enforcer), but he had a tall task, especially with some give to the turf,” said Casse, reached by phone in Kentucky after the race. “I nearly scratched him but if I scratched him I didn’t know what we would do next so I went ahead and ran him.
“It doesn’t surprise me at all. This horse (Conquest Daddyo) worked extremely well on the grass the other day. Scat Daddys love the grass and this is a big, long-striding colt that’s just going to get better the farther he runs.
“I’m sure it is (next stop Keeneland). I haven’t had a chance yet to talk to Ernie (Semersky, co-owner of Conquest Stables), but he loves the Breeders’ Cup and I’m sure he’ll be excited to get there.”
Conquest Daddyo paid $33.80, $13.80 and $7.90, teaming with Sky Marshal ($9.60, $6.60) for a $263 (7-1) exactor. A 7-1-3 (Manhattan Dan, $5.10) triactor was worth $1,655.30 while a $1 Superfecta [7-1-3-4 (Conquest Enforcer)] returned a whopping $4,417.10.