HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Trainer Jack Sisterson was in no rush to decide what’s next for Brad Grady and David Grund’s Seminole Chief the day after the Florida-bred juvenile son of Girvin pulled off a 12-1 upset in Saturday’s $300,000 FTBOA Florida Sire Stakes In Reality at Gulfstream Park.

“I’d like to talk to the owners and figure it out. He’s still a young horse,” Sisterson said. “He handled the two turns. I would have liked to have seen him switch leads. But he moved forward again,” Sisterson said. “Possibly the Holy Bull.”

The $250,000 Holy Bull (Grade 3), an important prep for the $1 million Curlin Florida Derby (G1), will be contested at the mile-and-a-sixteenth distance of the In Reality at Gulfstream Feb. 3.

“We’ll see how he comes out of the race,” Sisterson said before saddling Perfectly Mperfect for victory in a maiden claiming race in Sunday’s fourth race. “I’m kind of a passenger along the way. I listen to the owners.”

Seminole Chief was making only his third career start Saturday, following an eight-length debut score at Finger Lakes and a troubled sixth in the $200,000 Affirmed, the seven-furlong second leg of the Florida Sire Stakes series.

Sisterson was pleased with how Seminole Chief exited his half-length triumph in the final leg of the FTBOA Florida Sire Stakes series, in which Bentornato finished a length back in third in his bid to sweep the series for juveniles sired by accredited Florida stallions.

“He’s doing great. I kept him out in the round pen for a few hours this morning. He’s happy,” Sisterson, whose stable is based at Palm Meadows, said.

Out of Secret Song, by Dunkirk, Seminole Chief was bred in Florida by Brad and Misty Grady. An earner of $195,960 in three starts, he sold to HND Bloodstock for $80,000 at this year’s Ocala Breeders’ Sales June Sale where he was consigned by Bobby Dodd.


Sand and Sea Airs for Riley Mott in $100,000 Sabal Palm

Trainer Riley Mott is making his presence felt early in the Championship Meet, saddling Sand and Sea for a dominating triumph in Sunday’s $100,000 Orange Blossom overnight handicap at Gulfstream Park.

Sand and Sea paid $11.60 to win.

The son of Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott is based in South Florida for the first time as he nears the completion of his first full season of training his own stable.

“To win at a place like Gulfstream—I’ve been coming here since I was literally in diapers. I always had aspirations to have a presence here on this circuit,” Mott said. “It’s pretty special for me.”

James Karp’s Sand and Sea, who was ridden by Paco Lopez, went right to the front at the start of the mile-and-a-sixteenth Orange Blossom for fillies and mares on synthetic and was never threatened thereafter. The 5-year-old daughter of Liam’s Map set quarter-mile fractions of :24.71 and :47.96 on her way to a three-and-a-quarter-length victory in 1:40.10.

“The filly loves being out there on the front end by herself. In her past three or four races, she’s kind of been out there without any issue. You know how Paco rides. He loves looping the rein. So I thought he’d fit her perfect,” Mott said. “She gets brave out on the lead and likes the synthetic. She broke her maiden here sprinting a couple of years ago pretty impressively. It was a good result.”

Sister Lou Ann, the 5-2 favorite, finished second after chasing Sand and Sea from start to finish under Jose Ortiz. Florida-bred Coco finished third.

Who’s Hot: Jose Ortiz tripled on Sunday’s program, scoring aboard Falfurrias ($8) in the first race, Famous Gent ($6), a Florida-bred son of Double Diamond stallion First Dude, in the sixth race and Mo Touring ($5.80) in the seventh race… Paco Lopez doubled aboard Florida-bred Ensign Parker ($14.40) in race five and Sand and Sea ($11.60) in the ninth race.

Return to December 3 issue of Wire to Wire