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Sonny León makes history with Rich Strike

Enjoy a new installment of "De Pedigree" by José Luis D'Angelo

51 years later, another Venezuelan rider, Sonny León, has won his first participation in the Kentucky Derby emulating Gustavo Avila who achieved it in 1971 guiding CAÑONERO. Sonny León with the outsider RICH STRIKE, the least played colt, in another historical situation, entering the long-awaited race a day earlier, responding as the first substitute due to the withdrawal of one of the 20 initially registered

Without winning any race en route to the Triple Crown, RICH STRIKE, only with a 3rd that gave him the points to be able to be a substitute in the race and with a discreet 7-1 campaign, won the great event of world horse racing. Colt that his breeders, the famous Calumet Farm, debuted in the grass mile at Ellis Park on August 15, 2021, arriving last and from which they managed to leave after a month in his second presentation, precisely at Churchill Downs, the track where he achieved glory, the September 17 in the mile and on the sand, when he was claimed for $30,000 and also won the race, although with disappointment because the victory was reached by more than 17 lengths, then guided by Adam Beschizza. The colt born on April 25, 2019, who, after being weaned in 2019, her mother sold pregnant for just $ 1,700 at the Keeneland mixed auction, reaches the hands of trainer Eric Reed with its new owners and in less than a month very high in the mile at Keeneland, he finished 3rd by 3 ½ lengths with Leparoux. From there they began their dream always with Sonny León racing it in 4 classics, the first at Fair Grounds and the other 3, before Saturday, at Turfway Park, in which without failing, he did not win, until in the last one, the Jeff Ruby Stakes G3 finished 3rd earning the points that allowed him to be a substitute for the Kentucky Derby.

Grandson of CURLIN by KEEN ICE, the horse that with Javier Castellano surprised AMERICAN PHAROAH who had just won the Triple Crown, defeating him in the Travers Stakes in Saratoga, has a closed inbred 3p x 2m to SMART STRIKE and contributed to extend the supremacy that maintains in the competition, the first step of the Triple Crown of the United States, the paternal current of RAISE A NATIVE since 1969, which now has 23 Kentucky Derby wins, 16 by way of MR. PROSPECTOR as the case of RICH STRIKE.

The biggest surprise since 1913 in the so-called Carrera de las Rosas (CAÑONERO was no more of a surprise because at the time they locked it up in number 14 with several horses). A slow horse, for me driven by a divine force, with perfect handling, a masterpiece by the Venezuelan jockey Sonny León who, saving ground as much as he could, advanced through race traffic with impeccable skill, counting on the horse of course , searching, making decisions, finding the passes, without disturbing anyone and also getting bigger once it matched, nothing more and nothing less than before the Eclipse Award 2021 and the líder on his way to Eclipse 2022, to take the victory, swallowing earth, impressive even as he had a lot of sand in his ears, to fill all Venezuelans with emotion and joy, shaking the national feeling, accompanied by his baby and his wife who attended see the race

In consultation with Jaime Casas, Sonny León, who since 2021 has been the biggest winning Venezuelan jockey in races in the United States, achieved his first victory in Venezuela at Rancho Alegre on August 13, 2007 with Magia Slew, pupil of Israel Gutiérrez. His first victory in La Rinconada was on November 30, 2008 with Fernando Parilli's El Fructuoso, adding 137 firsts in Venezuela until his last photo on April 5, 2015 with Relámpago de Oro, also from Fernando Parilli's stable, reaching two classic wins. , coincidentally the same classic, Eduardo Larrazabal 2010 with Miss Quisquella and 2011 with Autumn Parts and 1 Copa, la Taconeo, with Match Cracker. In the United States it started in 2015 and already has 771 victories each better year, to the point that in 2021 it was 11th for races won, operating basically in Ohio and its surroundings, that is, Mahoning Valley, Belterra, Turfway near Cincinnati and in Mountaineer in West Virginia.

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“AMOLED when it reaches, it takes off and it goes”, as I said in my program and just like that, he reached his third victory and second classic in La Rinconada, remaining undefeated for the colors of ZM with the training of Parilli Tota, repeating in the Hypocrite who also won last year with ANDARIEGO.

LYNDACARTER born in The Invasion and daughter of líder stallion VACATION del Paumar, gave the first classic victory to the enthusiastic badge of Max-Poca of the Pocaterra brothers and his jockey Rafael Solano, Rapha García's pupil, also Cipriano's agent, undefeated filly in 2 from Ramón García Mosquera's stable, who reached a hat trick on Sunday.

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