FLASH OF MISCHIEF REBOUNDS WITH RING THE BELL VICTORY; LOVELY RIDE CRUISES TO MISTLETOE TRIUMPH
For Immediate Release
Contact: Jennifer Hoyt, Director of Racing
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Lovely Ride Romping home in the Mistletoe Stakes
Photo credit: Coady Photography
FLASH OF MISCHIEF REBOUNDS WITH RING THE BELL VICTORY
LOVELY RIDE CRUISES TO MISTLETOE TRIUMPH
HOT SPRINGS, AR (Saturday, Dec. 10, 2022) – Jockey Christian Torres swept the many storm clouds aside with a Saturday stakes double at Oaklawn Park, beginning with Jerry Namy’s Flash of Mischief, who rebounded from a ninth-place finish in the Nov. 5 Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1) to impressively win Saturday’s $150,000 Ring the Bell Stakes.
Two races later, Lovely Ride belied the weather and cruised to a bounce-back victory in $150,000 Mistletoe Stakes by shrugging off an early challenge for the lead to take the one-mile race through a persistent rain and over a sloppy track.
“I was very thankful once he got tipped out,” trainer Karl Broberg said of Flash of Mischief’s performance. “It looked like the race was over very quickly after he got him moved out. There were multiple reasons to get him out today. You want to be as far off that fence as you can be. Going into the race, I didn’t think we stood a chance because of the way the track was playing, so I’m incredibly impressed with that win.”
Flash of Mischief, 4-year-old Into Mischief colt, was winning his fifth stakes and ninth overall race from 23 starts and has now earned $774,901. He returned $5.00, $3.00 and $2.80 as the heavy favorite.
The Ring The Bell is named for a program launched last year by the Arkansas H.B.P.A. and Oaklawn to raise funds for the Arkansas Thoroughbred Retirement and Rehabilitation Foundation. Every time a horseman donates at least $100 to the Thoroughbred aftercare program, they get to ring a ceremonial bell set up in the winner’s circle.
“He’s a nice horse,” jockey Cristian Torres said of Flash of Mischief. “We had the perfect trip. Everything I asked, he did it. He showed up.”
Torres showed up right on time an hour later when Lovely Ride did everything according to plan by going right to the lead in the new stakes for fillies and mares around two turns, and shaking off a last-placed performance in an ill-fated stakes attempt in Canada last out.
The 4-year-old Candy Ride (ARG) filly’s front-running score returned $11.40, 5.00 and 3.20 when she skipped away from Coach and Will’s Secret, giving owners John Holleman, Flying P Stable and Larry Nafe the trophy and putting trainer Robertino Diodoro on the board with a stakes win this season.
“As soon as the entries came out, it didn’t matter if they had a Grade-1 horses in there, I was just looking to see if there was any speed in the race,” Diodoro said. “It looked like she could get to the lead, and when the track came up the way it was, it was a no brainer. There was no plan ‘B.’”
In contrast, 7-5 favorite Le De Vida could not find any traction when Lovely Ride kicked away and settled for fourth. A power failure just before the start forced the race to be hand-timed. Equibase clockers caught Lovely Ride finishing in 1:39.77.
Live racing resumes Sunday with a 12:30 p.m. first post. The 2022-2023 season runs through May 6.