By My Standards Shows Grit In Alysheba Stakes Victory

After finishing second in two of his three career starts at Churchill Downs, the fourth time was the charm for By My Standards, who turned away a calvary charge of some of the older male division’s runners on Friday to win the Grade 2 Alysheba Stakes.

The 4-year-old son of Goldencents sat calmly to the outside of pacesetter Mr Freeze, who led the field through an opening quarter in :25.71 seconds, with McKinzie, Owendale, and Silver Dust all remaining within striking distance. By My Standards remained attached to the outside hip of Mr Freeze as they approached the final turn in a leisurely :49.93, and then under jockey Gabriel Saez, By My Standards began to lodge a challenge for the lead as the front duo turned for home.

By My Standards entered the stretch with the lead, with Mr Freeze conceding on the inside path, Owendale looming on the outside, and McKinzie diving in to attempt splitting horses. Both Owendale and McKinzie loomed as threats to By My Standards, who changed leads on multiple occasions in the stretch, but an aggressive ride by Saez and a right-handed whip to keep the horse on task saw the colt find another gear and draw off from his rivals to prevail by 1 3/4 lengths. Owendale carried on from a wide trip to finish second, edging out a late-gaining Silver dust, while McKinzie finished fourth.

By My Standards completed 1 1/16-mile race in 1:42.24 over a fast main track for owner Allied Racing Stable and trainer Bret Calhoun. He paid $5 to win as the post time favorite.

The victory was worth $245,520 and increased By My Standards’ earnings to $1,764,430 record of 12-6-4-1.

It was a successful reunion for By My Standards and Saez, who rode the colt for each of his first nine starts, but wasn’t aboard for his two most recent efforts, both runner-up finishes. The pair have won all four starts together this year, including the Grade 2 New Orleans Classic Stakes and G2 Oaklawn Handicap.

It was also a bit of redemption in the colt’s Churchill Downs resume. By My Standards finished second in his debut start at Churchill Downs in November of his juvenile season in 2018, then returned a year later to finish 12th in the Kentucky Derby. Earlier this year, he ran second in the G2 Stephen Foster Stakes.

Bred in Kentucky by Don Ladd, By My Standards is out of the Grade 2-placed stakes-winning Muqtarib mare A Jealous Woman. He was a $150,000 purchase out of the 2018 Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co. Spring 2-Year-Olds in Training Sale.

See the full chart here.

ALYSHEBA QUOTES, courtesy of the Churchill Downs media office

Gabriel Saez (winning rider, By My Standards) — “A little bit out of the gate, I see (Manny) Franco trying to get going (on Mr Freeze). I said, ‘OK, he’s going to go. I’m going to stay in here close. It was not really fast on the front end, but when it was time to get running around the half-mile pole, he picked up an extra gear. Each time I asked him to give me that acceleration, he did. I was really confident in him today. I was expecting him to run a huge race today, and here we are. I’m glad we got the job done. I’m looking forward to the Breeders’ Cup. Fingers crossed and hope for the best.”

Bret Calhoun (winning trainer, By My Standards) – “Winning a race like this at Churchill is always special for our entire team. This horse got in some interesting pace scenarios in the last two starts and today Gabe (Saez) gave him the perfect ride and sat a perfect trip the entire way around there. It’s kind of weird to think the Alysheba is a prep for the Breeders’ Cup Classic (GI) but we’re going to go with it and hope to get there in November.”

Brad Cox (trainer, Owendale, second) — “There was no pace. I didn’t really know what to expect. Going into it, I didn’t think there was going to be much pace on paper and then obviously there was none. I am finding out about this horse … that he doesn’t really like kickback. He likes being out in the clear. He’ll run, but he’s not going to take it over the span of 5-6 furlongs and then expect to run on. He ran good, I was proud of the effort. He was beaten by a very, very good horse here. After the last race here (fifth in the Grade II Stephen Foster on June 27), I was kind of wondering where we belong in the handicap division and he put himself back in the mix. Very pleased, I was glad he got it turned around. Just his third race this year so hopefully we’ll see what happens coming out of this.”

Adam Beschizza (rider, Silver Dust, third) – “He ran his usual solid performance. I’m delighted for Bret (Calhoun). He’s been looking for redemption for a while with that horse (By My Standards). Silver Dust (also trained by Calhoun) is always knocking on the door. He always brings home a check. I’m sure his day is right around the corner.”

The post By My Standards Shows Grit In Alysheba Stakes Victory appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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