Ogden Phipps 2019: Preview, Entries & Odds

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NYRA Press Release | OTB Writer

Saturday, June 8: The Grade 1, $700,000 Ogden Phipps

Multiple Grade 1 winner Midnight Bisou, who is a perfect three-for-three so far this year, leads a talented field of seven entered for the 51st running of the Grade 1, $700,000 Ogden Phipps Stakes at 1 1/16 miles on Saturday at Belmont Park. The Ogden Phipps is a Breeders' Cup Challenge Series "Win and You're In" event to the Grade 1 Longines Breeders' Cup Distaff at Santa Anita Park November 2.

The Ogden Phipps is one of eight Grade 1 stakes on Saturday's 13-race card, which is the final day of the Belmont Stakes Racing Festival, highlighted by the 151st running of the Grade 1, $1.5 million Belmont Stakes . It will go as Race 5 with an approximate post time of 2:01 p.m.

2019 Ogden Phipps Odds & Entries

Race 5 at Belmont Park on Saturday, June 08 - Post 2:01 PM

Entry Horse ML Odds Jockey Trainer
1 Come Dancing 6-5 Manuel Franco
117 Lbs
Carlos Martin
2 Midnight Bisou 1-1 Mike Smith
123 Lbs
Steven Asmussen
3 Pacific Wind 12-1 Irad Ortiz, Jr.
117 Lbs
Chad Brown
4 Escape Clause 9-2 Tyler Baze
117 Lbs
Don Schnell
5 Mopotism 15-1 Mario Gutierrez
117 Lbs
Doug O'Neill

Trained by Hall of Famer Steve Asmussen for Bloom Racing LLC., Madaket Stables, and Allen Racing, Midnight Bisou will be making her first start since winning the Grade 1 Apple Blossom Handicap at Oaklawn Park April 14. Prior to that race, the daughter of Midnight Lute, bred in Kentucky by Woodford Stables, won the Grade 3 Houston Ladies Classic and the Grade 2 Azeri.

The connections of Midnight Bisou began mapping out her 4-year-old campaign shortly after she ended her sophomore season with a third in the 2018 Breeders' Cup Distaff behind Monomoy Girl. To date, that plan has worked perfectly.

"The Ogden Phipps has always been in the back of our minds," owner Jeffrey Bloom of Bloom Racing said. "We wanted to get through the Apple Blossom first and after she won that, this race seemed like the most logical choice. It seemed like the best way to get us back to the Breeders' Cup, which is the ultimate goal."

Midnight Bisou, who drew post 2, will be reunited with Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith Saturday.

Escape Clause, who has excelled since leaving her base at Assiniboia Downs in Winnipeg, Canada, where she was a dominate figure, makes her first start in New York, following her loss by a nose to Midnight Bisou in the Apple Blossom. Earlier in the year, she won the Grade 3 La Canada Stakes at Santa Anita for owners Don Schnell, Barry Arnason and True North.

"She's doing real well," trainer and co-owner Don Schnell said. "She has gotten better with age and experience. Ever since we brought her south [from Canada], she's done pretty good.

"I probably shouldn't like Midnight Bisou, but she's a lovely mare and always tries really hard," Schnell said. "She's going to be tough to outrun. In the Apple Blossom, we had a little trouble in the first turn when Wonder Gadot came over on us and it took her a second to get back into stride, but that's just an excuse and I don't like to make excuses. We're just hoping for a clean trip and that the best horse wins."

Jockey Tyler Baze will be aboard Escape Clause, who drew post 4.

Among the local hopefuls for the Ogden Phipps is Blue Devil Racing Stables' Come Dancing, who has won her last two starts, including the Grade 2 Ruffian at Belmont on May 5.

"She's doing really well," trainer Carlos Martin said. "She's only had two races this year by design. She had a great work the other day. [Jockey] Manny Franco said she's doing as good as she's ever done. She's eating up and looks like a picture, which is what you want to see in these fillies. There are probably three or four fillies in here that you're going to see later in the year at the Breeders' Cup. It's going to be a great race for the fans."

Come Dancing will break from post 1 with Franco again in the irons.

Trainer Chad Brown will be represented by Pacific Wind, owned by Sharon Alesia, Peter Brant, Ciaglia Racing and Domenic Savides. The 5-year-old daughter of Curlin comes off a second to Come Dancing in the Ruffian and will break from post 3 with Irad Ortiz, Jr. aboard.

Reddam Racing's multiple stakes winner Mopotism, coming off a fourth in the Grade 1 La Troienne Stakes at Churchill May 3, rounds out the Ogden Phipps field from the outside.

Pre-Draw News

Probable: Come Dancing (Carlos Martin), Electric Forest (Brown), Escape Clause (Don Schnell), Midnight Bisou (Steve Asmussen), Mopotism (Doug O'Neill), Pacific Wind (Brown)

This race is a Breeders' Cup Challenge Series "Win and You're In" race for the Breeders' Cup Distaff.

Midnight Bisou and Escape Clause set for rematch in G1 Ogden Phipps

A game runner-up effort behind Midnight Bisou in the Grade 1 Apple Blossom at Oaklawn convinced trainer Don Schnell to give Escape Clause another crack at her three-time Grade 1 winning multimillionaire rival in the Grade 1, $700,000 Ogden Phipps Stakes on Belmont Stakes Day, June 8 at Belmont Park.

Owned by Schnell in partnership with Barry Arnason and True North, the Manitoba-bred daughter of Going Commando raced almost exclusively in her native Canada, where she was a 15-time stakes winner, up until last fall when she won the Kathryn Crosby at Del Mar via disqualification.

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Buoyed by the Del Mar score, the connections entered Escape Clause in a string of graded races in California and were rewarded with a win in the Grade 3 La Canada at Santa Anita, three starts before her runner-up finish in the Apple Blossom.

Schnell said he relishes a return bout with Midnight Bisou in New York.

"When we heard that Midnight Bisou was going, we figured that we wanted a rematch," Schnell said. "We got hit pretty hard in the Apple Blossom, but with a clean trip I think we can beat her. Right now, she's training as good or better than she ever has."

A victory in the Ogden Phipps would provide veteran conditioner Schnell with his first Grade 1 victory. Escape Clause gave the Manitoba-based trainer his first graded stakes win in the La Canada.

"It's what everyone shoots for, probably would mean more than anything in racing," Schnell said. "We're going to sell her in Kentucky in the fall so it would probably mean more dollars in the pocket too."

Schell stated that jockey Tyler Baze will retain the mount aboard Escape Clause.

Bred by Cam Ziprick & Arnason Farms, Escape Clause, who has banked $645,500 in her 31-race career, was purchased at the Manitoba Division of the Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society Yearling Sale in 2015 for $3,792.

Come Dancing completes maintenance work for G1 Ogden Phipps

With regular rider Manny Franco aboard, Blue Devil Racing Stable's multiple graded stakes winning homebred Come Dancing visited the training track on Friday morning at Belmont, breezing six furlongs in 1:11.40 in her last major work in preparation for a start in the Grade 1, $750,000 Ogden Phipps on Belmont Stakes Day.

"I thought it was a great work from her," said conditioner Carlos Martin. "We wanted to keep her fit and fresh but not squeeze too much out of her with the racing coming up with only one week to go. I thought Manny did a terrific job on her this morning."

Unbeaten in two starts this year, the 5-year-old daughter of Malibu Moon began her 2018 campaign with an impressive victory in the Grade 3 Distaff on April 5 at Aqueduct in which she recorded a 114 Beyer and followed with an authoritative 6 ¾ length victory in the Grade 2 Ruffian on May 5 at Belmont.

Martin said he is confident in her abilities heading into a race in which she will face a number of equally accomplished mares including Midnight Bisou, Mopotism and Spiced Perfection.

"We knew last year we had a talented horse and we ran her in her first graded stakes in the Beldame where she finished fifth," said Martin. "We weren't discouraged by that effort and I sat down with her owners Marc Holiday and James O'Reilly and we mapped out a plan focusing on races for mares in New York and she's proven herself to be worthy to compete with the best competition."

Following that fifth-place finish in the Beldame, Come Dancing ended her 4-year-old campaign with a second-place finish by a neck to multiple graded stakes winner Marley's Freedom before returning from a layoff in April.

"Right now, we love where she's out and how she's been doing so we're confident coming into the race," said Martin. "Manny knows the horse well and she's doing great, she's the type of runner that doesn't need a lot to get ready for her races but that's how the good horses do it. We think she'll be ready next Saturday."

51st Running on Saturday, June 08, 2019

A race for fillies and mares 4-years and older, the Ogden Phipps is held at Belmont Park on the Belmont Stakes undercard.

This race is a Breeders' Cup Challenge Series "Win and You're In" race for the Breeders' Cup Distaff.

The renamed OGDEN PHIPPS HANDICAP was run for the first time on Saturday, June 22, 2002.

Phipps was a well-known philanthropist, sportsman, thoroughbred owner and breeder, and the former chairman of the family-owned Bessemer Securities Corporation. He was a member and past chairman of The Jockey Club and a trustee emeritus of the New York Racing Association. He was actively involved with Thoroughbred racing for approximately 70 years and campaigned homebred stakes winners such as Buckpasser, Easy Goer and the undefeated Personal Ensign. He passed away at age 93 on April 22, 2002, after a short illness.

This race was previously run 33 times as the Hempstead Handicap (1961-2001). The Hempstead Handicap was run at 1 1/2 miles for both sexes in 1961; six furlongs in 1970 and 1971; and 1 1/8 miles 1974-94. It was run at Aqueduct 1972-74. It was not run 1962-69. The change was made to run the race under allowance conditions, rather than as a handicap, for the 2014 edition.

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