Joyous Lady sings winning tune in $100,000 Richmond Stakes

Some of Indiana’s finest older females stepped onto the track for the 17th running of the $100,000-added Richmond Stakes Wednesday, Oct. 4 at Indiana Grand. It came down to the wire to determine a winner but it was Joyous lady and Jockey Tommy Pompell who took home top honors.

Joyous Lady and Tommy Pompell finally caught Express Run and Jon Court (inside) to win the $100,000 Richmond Stakes by the margin of a head Wed. Oct. 4 at Indiana Grand. (Photo by Linscott Photography)

Starting from post six in the seven-horse lineup, Joyous Lady used just enough early speed to track the progress of the early leader Express Run and Jon Court. Bar Rag and Fernando De La Cruz also showed good early speed from the outside to secure the second spot and get into stalking mode. Down the backstretch, Court had Express Run well in hand to reserve just as much as he could for the second half of the one and one-sixteenth mile race.

“The trip worked out pretty good today,” said Pompell. “I thought there would be early speed from the one (Peyton’s Pass) but I looked over and she wasn’t there. And, I thought Bar Rag would show early speed from the outside. I had an advantage there because I have ridden her in the past. So when the five (Express Run) went on out for the lead, I wanted to let those two hook up.”

Pompell began getting Joyous Lady prepped to close in on Express Run around the final turn and at the top of the stretch, she had Express Run in her sights. However, Express Run was not showing any signs of slowing down. Pompell went to work on Joyous Lady and began to close the gap. It took the entire length of the stretch for Joyous Lady to finally overtake Express Run, but she was successful in accomplishing her goal in the final strides of the race, winning by a head over Express Run. The rest of the field finished many lengths back with Bar Rag pulling in third place. Joyous Lady stopped the timer in 1:43.92.

Owner Dennis Claramunt and his wife, Cynthia, join trainer Randy Klopp and Tommy and Lesalene Pompell for the trophy presentation for Joyous Lady’s win in the $100,000 Richmond Stakes Wed. Oct. 4 at Indiana Grand. (Photo by Linscott Photography)

“At the top of the stretch, I thought she (Joyous Lady) would roll right on by,” said Pompell. “But he (Jon Court) made me work for it. He never gave it to me. My horse had to work hard to get by his horse (Express Run).”

Joyous Lady, the second choice of the field, paid $5.80, $3.40 and $2.80 across the board. The win in the Richmond Stakes was her ninth career victory, all of which have been recorded at Indiana Grand. It also marked her fourth stakes win for owners Dennis Claramunt and Randy Klopp, who also trains. The five-year-old daughter of Kela, who was bred by Claramunt and his wife, Cynthia, boosted her career earnings to more than $450,000 for her connections in her 26th career start.

The win with Joyous Lady caps off a successful week for Pompell, who recently earned his 2,500th career riding win. Pompell has had a stellar season and is currently ranked third in the standings this year. The third generation jockey is also ranked among the top five on the list of all-time leading riders at Indiana Grand.

Jockey Tommy Pompell talks with on-air racing personality Rachel McLaughlin following his win with Joyous Lady in the $100,000 Richmond Stakes Wed. Oct. 4. (Photo by Linscott Photography)

For Klopp, the win was the 21st of the season. Klopp is also among the top 10 on the list of all-time leading trainers.