Uni Could Try For Redemption In Aug. 22 Fourstardave At Saratoga

Following a third in her seasonal bow in the Grade 1 Just a Game on June 27 to stable mate Newspaperofrecord, reigning Champion Turf Mare Uni is a possibility to face colts in the Grade 1, $400,000 Fourstardave on August 22 at Saratoga Race Course.

Trained by Chad Brown, Uni suffered her only loss of 2019 in last year’s Fourstardave, where she made up 17 lengths to finish third, beaten 2 ½ lengths to a track-record setting performance by Got Stormy. The 6-year-old daughter of More Than Ready solidified championship honors in her next two starts in taking the Grade 1 First Lady at Keeneland where she set a new course record for one mile on the turf and the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Mile at Santa Anita.

“The only Grade 1 going a flat mile on the grass at Saratoga is against boys. Will we try it? Probably,” said Bradley Weisbord of BSW/Crow Bloodstock, who manages Uni on behalf of owners Michael Dubb, Head of Plains Partners, Robert LaPenta and Bethlehem Stables. “She was an unlucky loser last year to Got Stormy. We could take that route again this year and try to protect our title in the First Lady at Keeneland and the Breeders’ Cup Mile.”

Since joining Brown’s all-star shed row in 2017 after beginning her career in France for Fabrice Chappet, Uni has placed in all but one of her 13 starts for the four-time Eclipse Award-winning conditioner, including a total of eight stakes victories over six different tracks. Additionally, all of her last nine starts took place going a flat mile.

“She’s won on soft turf before, but [jockey] Joel [Rosario] said she was struggling with the turf that day,” Weisbord said of the Just a Game. “She probably needed the race. She had a splint issue in April and breezed four or five times heading into the Just a Game so she wasn’t super cherry heading into the race and you have to be cherry to beat a filly like Newspaperofrecord. Hats off to Chad for getting her back to Grade 1 form. She’ll be tough the rest of the year.”

In 2018, Uni won twice over soft and yielding turf in the De La Rose at Saratoga and the Grade 3 Noble Damsel at Belmont Park. Although the turf was listed as “firm” for the Just a Game, there were rain showers in the Elmont area earlier in the program.

Uni, bred in Great Britain by Haras D’Etreham, is out of the Dansili broodmare Unaided.

Rockemperor who was a close second in the Grade 1 Manhattan to stable mate Instilled Regard, could target the Grade 1, $1 million Old Forester Turf Classic on September 5 at Churchill Downs

The Brown-trained son of Holy Roman Emperor had dead aim on the pacesetters when four-wide at the top of the stretch under Hall of Fame jockey John Velazquez, briefly took command within the final half-furlong, but was nosed out of victory by stablemate Instilled Regard.

“It’s hard to know what his best distance his, but a mile and an eighth should hit him right over the head,” Weisbord said. “We’ve gotten beat a lot in stakes, but what made that such a brutal beat was because he had the horses in front of him collared. I don’t think the horse or Johnny saw Instilled Regard coming.”

Still in search of his first North American victory, Rockemperor has placed in four of his five starts in the United States. He made his seasonal bow in the Grade 2 Muniz Memorial Classic at Fair Grounds before being disqualified from second to third in the Grade 2 Charles Whittingham at Santa Anita.

Rockemperor is owned by Madaket Stables in partnership with Michael Dubb, Wonder Stables, Michael E. Kisber and Bethlehem Stables.

Bred in Ireland by Haras du Mezeray, Rockemperor is out of the Muhtathir broodmare Motivation and comes from the same family as multiple graded stakes winner on turf Yagli. Both hail from the prestigious lineage of prolific broodmare Best In Show.

The post Uni Could Try For Redemption In Aug. 22 Fourstardave At Saratoga appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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