Its Just Fate earns second stakes win in ITOBA Stallion Season Stakes
There was little surprise in the fifth running of the ITOBA Stallion Season Stake at Indiana Grand Saturday, June 9. Its Just Fate and Rodney Prescott picked up their second straight stakes victory, scoring a gate to wire effort.
Trained by Wayne Mogge, Its Just Fate broke well out of the gate and responded to Prescott’s signal to move straight to the top. There, the three-year-old Skylord gelding took control of the pace of the race with Rectified and Andres Ulloa sitting to their outside in stalking position. Garrison K and Marcelino Pedroza saved ground along the inside and tracked the progress of Its Just Fate before dropping back down the backstretch. Its Just Fate and Rectified began to draw off from the rest of the field.
Heading into the turn, Garrison K began to make a move along the inside and closed the gap on the top two. In mid-turn, Prescott, looked under his shoulder to see who was closing in and tapped Its Just Fate for a little more. Garrison K was in the middle of a big kick for Pedroza and at the top of the stretch, was poised to move right on by the leader. However, the bigger Its Just Fate had quite a bit left for the stretch drive and drew off from Garrison K for the five and one-half length victory. Garrison K was a strong second, crossing under the wire more than 12 lengths ahead of Shatterproof and Santo Sanjur, who closed late for third. The time of the one mile event was 1:39.17 seconds.
“They let us get by with real easy fractions tonight,” said Prescott. “He was relaxed and when I called on him he really finished well.”
Its Just Fate is now four for seven in his career for owners Patrick and Donald Donahoe, who are also the breeders. He increased his career bankroll to more than $168,000. The ITOBA Stallion Season Stake was his second stakes win. Prescott, who has been on him in all seven of his career starts, also won the $100,000 Sagamore Sired Stakes with the gelding in late May.
“We were a little concerned about running him back in 17 days and he had never run a route of ground before, so that concerned us too, but he handled it well,” said Mogge. “I’m not sure what his next start will be. I haven’t even looked yet.”
Mogge had one other horse that garnered a lot of attention Saturday at Indiana Grand. Let’s Dial Minnie, a first time starter for Steve Cauthen’s Dreamfields, Inc. along with owners Don Brady and Porter Thompson, ran third in the second race, just minutes after Justify crossed the wire as the sport’s latest Triple Crown winner. Cauthen was interviewed in the winner’s circle by Rachel McLaughlin, on-air racing personality, and talked about the Triple Crown experience, noting, “You have to have a good horse to win the Triple Crown. Not many horses can win the Triple Crown. I know Mike (Smith) and he’s a great guy. I’m very happy for him.”
Cauthen won the Triple Crown aboard Affirmed in 1978 at the age of 17. He was an international sensation and was featured on numerous publications, including Sports Illustrated during his run for the Triple Crown. The Hall of Famer now concentrates on raising and racing horses from his farm in Verona, Ky.