The 2015 North America Cup Winner Wakizashi Hanover and 2012 Hambletonian winner Market Share both qualified this morning at Dover Downs where performers from the Jim King Jr. stable captured five of the seven tests.
Joann King’s photo from today’s qualifier (Wakizashi on outside) with the hashtags #ComebackKid #Levy #2017HereWeCome
Bruce Kennedy of Truro, Nova Scotia owns Wakizashi, who was making his first appearance since winning a preferred at Dover in 1:52 just a few days after Christmas. The five-year-old gelding by Dragon Again had an abbreviated 2016 season (12 starts – 2-4-3) due to some respiratory issues which required surgery.
“It’s been a long path to identify and fix what was wrong with the horse but that happens in racing. He’s been so good to us and he deserved the efforts made to make him right again,” Kennedy explained late last year.
Wakizashi Hanover winning the 2015 NA Cup. (New Image Media)
“We really do not have a plan as we’ve been taking it one start at a time. Now we’ll look at what’s available and maybe just point to the Levy at Yonkers,” he added.
A winner of $1.4 million to date in his career, Wakizashi was driven as usual by Tim Tetrick this morning for trainer King. He stopped the clock in 1:53.3.
Market Share and trainer Linda Toscano.
King and Tetrick had another victory in the morning’s third qualifier as Qs Cruise was home with three lengths to spare in 1:59.3. It was the first lifetime start for the Yankee Cruiser three-year-old owned by King’s wife Joann Looney King.
Tetrick was also up behind the Mach Three seven-year-old Starskys Dream N from the King barn who was five lengths the best in 1:54.1 and his stablemate Nike Franco N who romped in 1:55.1 to win by 12 lengths.
King’s other victor, Purrfect Bags, was driven by Victor Kirby. The five-year-old mare by Roddys Bags Again, who has won $505,000 in her career to date, won in 1:56.3.
Market Share after winning the 2013 Maple Leaf Trot. (New Image Media)
Tetrick of course was at the lines behind Market Share for trainer Linda Toscano in the second qualifier. Now eight and a winner of $3.7 million lifetime for Richard Gutnick, T L P Stable and William Augustine, Market Share last raced in early December at the Meadowlands where he won on December 2.
He finished a close second behind winner Wind Of The North in the 1:55.3 test. The winner, a seven-year-old Cantab Hall gelding with $704,000 banked, is owned by Joann Dombeck of Florida.