NEW DATE! Celebrate Louisiana Bred Thoroughbreds at the LTBA Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet, Sunday, March

Celebrate
Louisiana Bred Thoroughbreds

at the
LTBA Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet
Sunday, March 31st

Dear LTBA Member:

You are cordially invited to attend our 2019 Annual Membership Meeting, at Equine Sales Company of Louisiana, in Opelousas, LA on Sunday March 31, 2019. Doors will open at 2:30 pm.

Awards will be presented to the breeders and owners of the outstanding accredited Louisiana Bred Horses of 2018 as well as the overall Horse of the Year. From 3:00 pm till 7:00pm  Equine Sales Company Sale Arena will be the site as awards will be presented to the owner of the leading Stallion, the owner of the Broodmare of the Year, the Leading Breeder of 2018, as well as the High Percentage Breeder of the Year. See the attached sheet of this year’s champions.

As a special treat, this year we will have someone from The Jockey Club on hand to explain and to answer the many questions on micro chipping. This is a big change for everyone, so expect to learn something.

Our program will also include live entertainment. As we combine the 2yo in training sale with our awards banquet we expect a large crowd as well as fun for everyone.

Sincerely,
Roger A. Heitzmann III
Secretary / Treasurer

 

What:       LTBA Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet
When:      Sunday, March 31st, 3:00 p.m.
Where:     Equine Sales Facility,
372 Harry Guilbeau Road   Opelousas, Louisiana  70570

 

Any questions or need more info call

Roger A. Heitzmann III, Secretary/Treasurer

Louisiana Thoroughbred Breeders Association

504-947-4676, 800-772-1195

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LTBA Announces 2018 Louisiana Bred Champions

LTBA Contact:
Roger Heitzmann
(504) 947-4676
roger@louisianabred.com
The Louisiana Thoroughbred Breeders Association has announced the results of the 2018 Accredited Louisiana Bred Champions, 2018 Stallion of the Year, 2018 Broodmare of the Year and Breeders of the Year.

2yo filly ~ Midnight Fantasy
2yo colt or gelding ~ Classy John
3yo filly ~ Testing One Two
3yo colt or gelding ~ Givemeaminit
4 & up filly or mare ~ Ours To Run
4 & up male ~ Monte Man
Broodmare of the Year ~ Street Beat
Stallion of the Year ~ Star Guitar
Breeder of the Year ~ Red River Farm, LLC
High Percentage of Stakes Winners Breeder ~ James McIngvale

Accredited Louisiana Bred Champions and Broodmare of the Year are selected by a vote of the membership. Leading Stallion and Leading Breeders are based on statistics.
Award presentations will be made at the 2019 Annual Meeting on Sunday, March 31, 2019, at Equine Sales of Louisiana, in Opelousas, when the overall “Horse of the Year” will be revealed. This year’s Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet are being held following the Breeze Show for the Equine Sales 2-Year-Olds in Training Sale.

Congratulations to all.

See below for complete results.

 

For more information, please call 1-800-772-1195 or visit louisianabred.com.
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Classy John, Midnight Fantasy Win Louisiana Futurity Divisions

There may have been an anxious moment or two, but in the end the heavy favorites of both divisions of the Louisiana Futurity got the job done on Saturday at the Fair Grounds.

Louisiana Futurity (Colt and Gelding Division)
Fair Grounds, 12-29-18, 6 furlongs
Two-Year-Old, Accredited Louisiana Bred, $85,700

Classy John_F_12-29-2018
Classy John, with Corey Lanerie aboard, out runs Jimi’s A Star, led by Emanuel Nieves, to win the Louisiana Futurity Colt and Gelding Division at the Fair Grounds in New Orleans, LA. Hodges Photography / Lou Hodges, Jr

CLASSY JOHN
Songandaprayer–Kitty’s Got Class
Breeder: Tom Curtis & Wayne Simpson
Owner: Valene Farms LLC
Trainer: Dallas Stewart
Jockey: Corey J. Lanerie

2nd
Jimi’s a Star
Star Guitar–Unusual Strike
Breeder: James Boyd
Owner: James A. Boyd
Trainer: Henry B. Johnson, Jr.
Jockey: Emanuel Nieves

3rd
Cafe Du Monde
New Year’s Day–Java Jolt
Breeder: Natalie Montgomery & Jim Montgomery
Owner: Diamond Racing Inc. and Jay and Joan Janssen
Trainer: Leo G. Gabriel, Jr.
Jockey: Florent Geroux

 

In the colts and geldings division, Valene Farms’ Classy John held off the late advances of Jimi’s a Star to win by a diminishing three-quarters of a length. Guided by jockey Corey Lanerie, the son of Songandaprayer broke sharply and pressed pacesetter Why Not Charlie through an opening quarter in 22.05. Classy John put that rival away nearing the turn, but was asked by Lanerie at the three-sixteenths pole as Jimi’s a Star loomed a challenge on the far outside. Classy John held Jimi’s a Star, posting a final six furlong time of 1:11.67 in the slop. Café Du Monde finished a non-threatening third.

“He had me a worried for a little bit,” Lanerie said. “He went kind of quick early but he’s a fast horse and I didn’t want to take anything away from him.”

Trained by Dallas Stewart, Classy John won the Louisiana Champions Day Juvenile Stakes earlier in the meet and broke his maiden against open company in his career debut at Saratoga. His lone defeat took place against winners at Churchill Downs behind stakes placed Hog Creek Hustle.

“He ran great,” Stewart said. “I’m very proud of him. He’s such a nice horse. He’s been to Saratoga and ran big at Churchill. He’s just a very quality colt. A big thank you goes out to Murray and Jerry Valene for giving me the opportunity to train this horse.”

It was the third win in four career outings for Classy John, who upped his earnings to $171,650.

As the heavy 1-9 favorite, Classy John returned $2.60, $2.10 and $2.10 while Jimi’s a Star brought back $.00 and $2.10. Café Du Monde paid $2.10 to show.

Shae’s Day and Why Not Charlie completed the order of finish.

 

 

Louisiana Futurity (Filly and Gelding Division)
Fair Grounds, 12-29-18, 6 furlongs
Two-Year-Old, Accredited Louisiana Bred Fillies, $89,100

Midnight Fantasy_F_12-29-2018
Midnight Fantasy, with Adam Beschizza aboard, wins the 52nd running of the Louisiana Futurity – Filly Division at the Fair Grounds in New Orleans. Hodges Photography / Lou Hodges, Jr

MIDNIGHT FANTASY
Midnight Lute–St. Jean
Breeder: J. Adcock & Hume Wornall
Owner: Carl R. Moore Management LLC
Trainer: Joe Sharp
Jockey: Adam Beschizza

2nd
Miss Bitters
Old Fashioned–Sheila Tequila
Breeder: Stephen Brown
Owner: Mintmere Thoroughbreds, LLC
Trainer: Glenn Delahoussaye
Jockey: Colby J. Hernandez

3rd
Goodprofit
Guilt Trip–Charming Colleen
Breeder: James McIngvale
Owner: James McIngvale
Trainer: Chris Richard
Jockey: Corey J. Lanerie

In the fillies division three races later, Carl R. Moore Management’s Midnight Fantasy was stuck between horses early, made the lead, then gave it up before taking full command nearing the turn and drawing off to a convincing ten-length score.

Trained by Joe Sharp and guided to victory by Adam Beschizza, the daughter of Midnight Lute completed thee six furlong voyage over a sloppy track in 1:11.62. Miss Bitters finished a distant second and Goodprofit rounded out the trifecta.

Completing the order of finish were Raising the Ante, Its Misty in Paris, Cohenscollegefund and Scat At Ms. Pat’s.

“She’s always had sort of an easy lead in her last couple of wins,” Beschizza said. “Today was a bit of a challenge but we’re still looking forward with her. She’s always been a filly that Joe has held in high regard and hopefully she can live up to her expectations and keep on improving.”

Midnight Fantasy won her first two starts by a combined 12¾ lengths, which took place in a state-bred maiden special weight on Opening Day and the Louisiana Champions Day Lassie Stakes.

“It was good for her to have to take back a bit and sit off another horse,” Sharp said. “Mentally she’s just been rock solid since day one. At some point she was going to have to do that so it was nice. One of these days she’ll get a fast track again, but she seems to handle whatever we throw at her so far.”

Sharp did not rule out the $150,000 Silverbulletday Stakes as a possible next start for Midnight Fantasy and also mentioned the $100,000 Louisiana Bred Premier Night Starlet Stakes at Delta Downs on February 9.

“We’ll talk about it. It’s either (the Silverbulletday Stakes) or Delta,” Sharp said. “We’ll get her back and cool her out. Every option is open at this point.”

With a win in the fillies division of the Louisiana Futurity, Midnight Fantasy has now earned a total of $138,060. As the heavy 1-9 favorite, she returned $2.10 across the board while Miss Bitters paid $5.60 and $2.60. Goodprofit brought back $2.10.

Bred in Louisiana by J. Addock and Hume Wornall, Midnight Fantasy was purchased for $77,000 from this year’s Equine Sales of Louisiana 2-Year-Old and Horses of Racing Age Sale where she was consigned by Pike Racing.

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Louisiana Champions Day Juvenile

Louisiana Champions Day Juvenile
Fair Grounds, 12-8-18, 6 furlongs
Two-Year-Olds, $100,000

 

Classy John_12-8-2018-F
Jockey Brian Hernandez, Jr. aboard Classy John pulls away from the pack to win the 28th running of the Louisiana Champions Day Juvenile at Fair Grounds. Hodges Photography / Lou Hodges, Jr.

CLASSY JOHN
Songandaprayer–Kitty’s Got Class
Breeder: Tom Curtis & Wayne Simpson
Owner: Valene Farms LLC
Trainer: Dallas Stewart
Jockey: Brian Joseph Hernandez, Jr.

2nd
Jimi’s a Star
Star Guitar–Unusual Strike
Breeder: James Boyd
Owner: James A. Boyd
Trainer: Henry B. Johnson, Jr.
Jockey: Emanuel Nieves

3rd
Calimambo
Calibrachoa–Mambo Lake
Breeder: J. Adcock & Hume Wornall
Owner: Phyllis J. Hodges
Trainer: James E. Hodges
Jockey: James Graham

 

 

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Classy John the Definition of a Happy Accident

By Brian DiDonato

image
Classy John & Dallas Stewart. Sarah K Andrew photo

The story of 2-year-old colt Classy John (Songandaprayer) looks like a pretty interesting one on paper, but is even more so than meets the eye. A $12,000 Equine Sales of Louisiana purchase in May off of just a gallop, the Valene Farms-owned Dallas Stewart trainee shipped up to Saratoga last Saturday to romp by six lengths at 12-1 odds in a typically tough GI Travers S. day maiden special weight (video replay).

The Louisiana-bred beat a pricey group in the process, defeating the likes of an $850,000 2-year-old acquisition and a $650,000 yearling as well as several fashionably pedigreed homebreds.

Classy John was an excellent value purchase to be sure, but as it turns out, he wasn’t an intentional one.

“We got a little confused. I was on the phone, and I thought I was bidding on 15, but it was 14,” owner Murray Valene revealed. “But it turned out to be a pretty good buy, huh? We didn’t have any idea what the horse looked like, but that’s the way it goes. You never do know. It turned out to be a really nice little horse, with some decent pedigree.”

Classy John is the third foal and first to race out of Kitty’s Got Class (Old Forester), who handily won her first three races, including two stakes, as a Woodbine-based juvenile.

After looking at the colt’s page, and him as an individual, Valene began to come around to his purchase.

“I took one look at him when he got in and said, ‘Boy, I like the looks of this colt.’ So we sent him up to Dallas because he looked like he was above average. He was just a good-looking horse.”

Hip 15, an Eskendereya filly who went for $9,000, has not yet started or been credited with an official work.

Once in Stewart’s program, Classy John gave some indication that he was a nice horse, but he really caught his trainer’s attention after blazing through five panels in a bullet :58.60 from the gate at the Churchill Downs Training Center Aug. 17.

“Two or three weeks before [the race, on Aug. 9,] he worked in [1:01 4/5], but in the last work, he worked in :58 3/5 from the gate,” Stewart noted. “So I called the clocker to make sure that was legit–I was up here [in Saratoga]. The clocker said he might have even gone a little faster than that–it was unreal. So I talked to Murray and told him there was a race on Travers Day. Murray’s always game for anything, so he said, ‘Let’s go for it.’”

Valene and Stewart already had another runner for the card in last year’s local GI Hopeful S. third Givemeaminit (Star Guitar), who checked in eighth in the GI H. Allen Jerkens.

Stewart admitted to wondering before the race if his decision to ship Classy John up to the Spa was the right one.

“I got to thinking that maybe it wasn’t the right thing to do with the crowd and everything,” he said. “We’d have to fly him up on Wednesday, gallop him Thursday and Friday and then run Saturday. So I was a little concerned about that, but it looked like it would be the first race of the day, so we went with it and he handled it great.”

A fast work doesn’t necessarily mean a fast race, but Stewart was confident in Classy John’s ability.

“He worked so good, and we had the video of the work, so I saw it,” he said. “Plus, I talked to [jockey] Jack Gilligan who worked him and he said, ‘He is really, really nice.’ So we just got him up here and that’s how it went–he just slaughtered ’em.”

Classy John shipped back to Kentucky Sunday morning, but will likely return to New York for the Oct. 6 GI Champagne S. He is not Breeders’ Cup nominated.

What made the performance even more special was that Classy John is named for Valene’s father, John Valene, who passed away last Tuesday at the age of 100.

“My father passed away on Tuesday, and I flew up on Friday to watch the races,” Valene said. “So, just given the name and the circumstances and everything else, it’s extra special and I think he’s going to be a nice little horse. Hopefully, he stays healthy, because in this game you never know, but I think he’s for real.”

John Valene, who had attended the races at Canterbury Park just a couple weeks ago, first got the family involved in racing in the early 1960s when he claimed a horse who Murray Valene says subsequently won his next seven starts.

Murray Valene’s racing interests later grew significantly, and at one point Valene Farms had around 140 horses in training. He now has about a dozen on the track. Valene is also associated with Louisiana’s Clear Creek Stud, of which he jointly owns the property that it stands on. Valene has mostly campaigned Louisiana-bred or sired horses, including champions in Minnesota and Illinois.

But this wasn’t by any means his first win up at Saratoga.

Valene Farms took the 1993 GII Adirondack S. with $7,000 purchase Astas Foxy Lady (Zuppardo’s Prince), and doubled up in the same race (via DQ) exactly 20 years later with the Stewart-trained Designer Legs (Graeme Hall). The latter was a $10,000 yearling acquisition.

“It just goes to show you–you never know based on what you paid for a horse what you’ve got,” Valene said. “It’s all about the heart and what’s on the inside. Nobody knows that until they run.”

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