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Calder: Mike Smith sweeps stakes with Yes I'm Lucky and Sweetmarys Success
By Mike Welsch
MIAMI - Winning a $100,000 stakes race with a promising 2-year-old will make any trainer smile. But winning Calder's Frank Gomez Memorial on Saturday with Yes I'm Lucky was extra special for trainer Eddie Plesa Jr.
"Winning this race today was very special to me. We were the second outfit into the grounds and he [Gomez] was right behind us when this place opened 40 years ago," said Plesa referring to himself and his father, Eddie Plesa Sr. "Frank was stabled next to me and we were close friends for a long time. He was just a great guy."
Yes I'm Lucky led throughout under jockey Mike Smith to register a convincing four-length victory over Brothersofthetime in the 5 ½-furlong Gomez Memorial with first-time starter Casiguapo rallying to finish third in a field of 11 juvenile colts and geldings. The victory gave Smith a sweep of both stakes on the card. He won the $100,000 J J'sdream for juvenile fillies a half hour earlier aboard the odds on favorite Sweetmarys Success.
Yes I'm Lucky is bred for speed, being a son of Yes It’s True out of the fleet mare Whenthedoveflies, a seven-time stakes winner who had the majority of her success coming in turf sprints. Yes I'm Lucky had won his only previous start, rallying to a game head victory over just three rivals at Monmouth Park earlier this month.
"I have never heard about horses who were so highly touted as in that race at Monmouth Park," said Plesa. "Ben Perkins supposedly had the best 2-year-old he'd ever trained and Kelly Breen had something out of the ordinary. Even though it was only four horses it was a quality field. He was about a half a work away from where I wanted him to be but it was important for Monmouth to fill those 2-year-old races early so I put him in and he exceeded my expectations that day."
Yes I'm Lucky is owned by Trilogy Stable and Plesa’s wife, Laurie, the same team who campaigns Preakness runner-up Itsmyluckyday. Yes I'm Lucky completed the distance in 1:06.35 and returned $6.
Sweetmarys Success also led virtually throughout under Smith to register a 1 ½-length decision over In Luv With Willie in the J J'sdream. One More Wild Ride finished third.
Sweetmarys Success paid $3.20 after covering 5 ½ furlongs in 1:07.56 under Smith. The daughter of Teuflesberg is owned and trained by Wesley Ward, who was on a flight home from Royal Ascot on Saturday.
"I was watching the races all day and saw all the main track races were being won from the three path so I tried to keep her off the rail," said Smith. "She had a little trouble changing leads and when she did she kind of took me down to the rail in the stretch, but fortunately it really didn’t matter and I thought she had a little something left at the end."
Smith, who won the Belmont Stakes two weeks earlier with Palace Malice, said he's been enjoying himself lately travelling around the country and winning some big races as he goes.
"This has been fun," said Smith. "I'm getting to travel and ride some pretty nice horses and win some big races. I might even be back here again in a couple of weeks for the Summit of Speed."
Smith went to the minors and took the calder jocks to school.He ran 2 great races just like the pro he is.He is like good wine getting better with age.
Way to go Mikey and Team Plesa! Eddie does a job like no other! Excellent horseman, glad to see him in the winners circle with another stake horse! More to follow!!
Big Money Mike!
Mike Smith knows how to get the job done!
Mike the MAN!
Michael Earl Smith!!
Wow! Experience wins again.... Another decade of this wining pace, and we may have a Mike Smith in Bronze someday at Santa Anita.....
Mike Smith rocks---Stay at Saratoga this year
Congratulations to all the winning connections.
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