Ramsey watches three of his horses win at Arlington Million
After watching his horse Big Blue Kitten win Saratoga's Grade I Sword Dancer on an in-house television monitor, owner Ken Ramsey turned his attention to the Grade 1 Secretariat Stakes at Arlington International Racecourse late Saturday afternoon.
More good fortune struck as Ramsey was on hand to watch Rosie Napravnik steer Admiral Kitten to a convincing 1¼- length victory in a 1¼-mile turf showcase for 3-year olds.
Turns out that was just an appetizer on Ramsey's local plate.
An hour later, Ramsey was posing in the winner's circle with Real Solution, who finished second and was moved up to first through a disqualification in the Arlington Million.
All three Ramsey horses were sons of Kitten's Joy, who won the Secretariat in 2004.
Kitten's Joy, a 2004 Eclipse champion turf male, is now Ramsey's prize-winning stallion.
"We knew before today that Kitten's Joy was a world class sire," said trainer Michael Maker, who watched Admiral Kitten win for the first time this season. "Today, he put on exclamation point on it."
Admiral Kitten, who had been second in four straight races, put to rest his runner-up habit.
He lost his last two races (Grade III American Derby and Arlington Classic) by less than a combined 1¼ lengths.
Napravnik was aboard the three-time winner for the first time.
The veteran rider placed Admiral Kitten 10th in the 13-horse field after a half mile, before gradually moving toward the leaders. She swung the 5-1 third favorite four wide in the stretch and kicked clear from the front-running running longshot Stormy Len as they neared the wire.
"After four second-place finishes, we were due for a good trip one of these times," Maker said. "He had lost ground to the winners in those races, and Rosie saved ground on both turns here. Then he came with his run."
A run that increased his bankroll to nearly $500,000 with the $279,000 paycheck.
"We were able to sit back and relax," Napravnik said. "He's a very classy horse, laid back and very enjoyable to ride."
And what a ride for Ramsey on Saturday.