Arsenalofdemocracy gives Amoss, Quinonez first wins of 2017
Five-time Indiana Grand Leading Trainer Tom Amoss scored his first win of the 2017 season Wednesday, April 19 with a horse that has been part of the stable for the past three seasons. Arsenalofdemocracy rallied home to a four-length win in the afternoon’s second race of the day, which also marked the first win for Indiana newcomer Alonso Quinonez. It’s been a journey worth the wait for Midwest Thoroughbred’s Arsenalofdemocracy, who overcame an eye injury last year in his return to Indiana.
Starting from post five, Arsenalofdemocracy, the favorite of the six-furlong claiming event, tracked the progress of others in the race as Cherokee Band and Constantino Roman led the way down the backstretch. Quinonez was able to slip Arsenalofdemocracy down to the inside, saving ground and shaking loose from the field in the stretch for the win. Cherokee Band finished second while My Brown Eyed Guy and Manoel Cruz maintained position for third.
Arsenalofdemocracy, a five-year-old son of Imperialism, increased his career bankroll to more than $65,000 for Karen and Richard Papiese’s Midwest Thoroughbreds. Amoss handles the training duties for the claimer, who has overcome adversity and proved his grit in his return to the winner’s circle.
“I got this horse (Arsenalofdemocracy) after his last race at Churchill Downs as a three-year-old,” said Amoss. “He got his first win at Canterbury and got on a hot streak, winning all four of his starts there. We had him at Indiana Grand last year and during a race, something struck his eye, causing severe damage. It was a joint effort by the racetrack veterinarians and the clinic in Kentucky to save his eye.”
Arsenalofdemocracy’s owners stepped up in a big way. Amoss noted the Papiese’s put a lot of money into saving his eye, something that most owners would not have bothered with. Known for their love and commitment of their horses, the expensive process was a success for the Papiese family, and although there is a noticeable white spot on the eye and the gelding has limited vision, he is back racing and the injury has not stopped him at all in his career as a racehorse.
“It doesn’t matter to Midwest Thoroughbreds whether it is a cheaper claimer or a stakes horse, they take responsibility and do everything they can that is in the best interest of the horse,” added Amoss.
It was the first time aboard Arsenalofdemocracy for Alonso Quinonez, who made his Indiana riding debut in the season opener Tuesday, April 18. Although he started off his career more than a decade ago in the Midwest and was touted as one of the brightest up and coming jockeys, he didn’t compete on the Indiana circuit. Instead, he shifted his tack to California where he experienced a lot of success, including several Graded Stakes wins, the most noted being a win in the 2011 Grade II San Felipe Stakes with Premier Pegasus, who was on the Kentucky Derby trail that year.
After several very successful seasons in California, an injury sidelined Quinonez for several months. He admitted recovery and a commitment to therapy was tough, but he returned and picked up where he left off in California. He arrived this winter at Turfway Park, finding success and he hopes it transfers over to Indiana Grand for the 2017 racing season.
“I came in and was able to win the title at Turfway Park,” said Quinonez. “I have a good agent in Jimmy McNerney and I hope our success continues in Indiana. Riding for trainers like Tom Amoss is great. I really appreciate the opportunity Mr. Amoss gave me to ride this horse today. He (Arsenalofdemocracy) was impressive.”
Arsenalofdemocracy is one of the fleet under the direction of Amoss’ longtime assistant trainer Shane Jolivette at Indiana Grand. With several strings at different locations, Amoss will rotate horses in and out throughout the 120-day meet with hopes of securing his sixth leading trainer title in the past seven years.
“As a stable that had the leading owner in Maggi Moss last year at Indiana Grand, we are really happy to be there racing,” said Amoss. “I always enjoy racing there. It’s one of my favorite places to race and I enjoy the enthusiastic crowds.”
The season continues through Saturday, Oct. 28. Racing will be conducted Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday at 2:05 p.m. EST with Saturday racing beginning at 6:05 p.m. EST. Thursday racing will be held July 6 – Aug. 24 at 2:05 p.m. EST.