04/09/2013 12:33PM

Keeneland: Ramsey barn power-packed again

Tom Keyser
Gung Ho is one of two horses trained by Mike Maker and owned by Ken and Sarah Ramsey in Thursday's eighth race at Keeneland, along with Sneaky Kitten.

LEXINGTON, Ky. – While 12 is the Keeneland record for most wins by an owner at a meet, the track offers no such record for most starts.

This spring, Ken and Sarah Ramsey appear destined to smash the record for wins – and hardly anyone could argue with Keeneland if it decided to just go ahead and declare the Ramseys’ number of starts a new mark, too.

Through the first three-day weekend of the 16-day spring meet, the Ramseys had won with 6 of 15 runners, already taking them halfway to the 12-win milestone first established by Calumet at the 1941 spring meet and equaled only twice since, the latest by the Ramseys themselves last fall.

Moreover, the white and red Ramsey silks are leaving the Keeneland walking ring in droves: the Nicholasville, Ky.-based stable was scheduled to have three starters Wednesday and a whopping nine more on a nine-race Thursday card.

“We might be in danger of winning one Thursday,” Ken Ramsey said with customary mischief.

Ramsey, 77, serves as the mouthpiece for the couple, with his wife having suffered a highly debilitating stroke on Feb. 21, 2007. Ramsey is shy of neither cameras nor microphones, and in fact he and his family will be tailed Thursday at Keeneland by a production crew from a major film company seeking to feature them in a reality series on horse racing.

“They wanted to see if we could run enough horses to maybe stir up some festivities Thursday,” said Ramsey. “We’re doing our best to comply.”

Among the Ramsey runners rating the best chances Thursday are Sneaky Kitten and Gung Ho, who will run as a stable coupling in the richest race of the day, a $62,000 second-level allowance at 1 1/2 miles on turf. The nominal feature is carded as the eighth race on a program that begins at the usual 1:05 p.m. Eastern.

Sneaky Kitten and Gung Ho are both trained by Mike Maker, the main Ramsey trainer among a group that also includes Wesley Ward. Ramsey said he believed both 4-year-old colts would actually start, with Julien Leparoux taking the call on Sneaky Kitten and Alan Garcia on Gung Ho.

Other opportunities for a Ramsey winner’s circle photo include Perfect Praise in race 2, Won Fast Bullet in race 7, and Scandalo in the race-9 finale.

Ramsey horses accounted for a remarkable five-race bookend on opening weekend, taking the early double on the Friday opener and then closing out Sunday with a sweep of the late pick three.

◗ Also Thursday, Ward will be looking to stay unbeaten in 2-year-old races at the meet when he will be represented by the stable coupling of Tomei and Hearsay Social in race 3. Ward horses were easy winners of the first two “baby” races of the meet, with Sweet Emma Rose on Friday and Pablo Del Monte on Sunday.