09/25/2013 9:50AM

Red Mile: Odds On Amethyst ready to turn the corner in Bluegrass

Odds On Amethyst is a product of millionaire parents Mystical Sunshine and Muscle Hill.

Sometimes it pays to have friends in close proximity.

Take the fate of Odds On Amethyst, a contender in race seven, the $90,100 first of three colt and gelding divisions of the Bluegrass Stakes at the Red Mile on Friday. His trainer, Robin Schadt, loved his talent while training this winter at South Florida Training Center.

“He was a handful. Very studdy,” Schadt said. “Everytime I would take him to the track he would rear up. He was looking to mount any inanimate object. He was too much for me.”

[DRF HARNESS: Watch all the Grand Circuit action (9/26-9/29 & 10/3-10/6) from The Red Mile on DRF! Plus video pick four analysis every day!]

So Schadt turned to trainer Dan Daley, a winter regular at the Training Center. Daley helped bring the colt around a bit and then when the two trainers left Florida, Schadt took Odds On Amethyst, a homebred son with extraordinary parents Muscle Hill and Mystical Sunshine.

Schadt had only moderate success with the colt and eventually made the decision that the only way to calm him down and make him more of a racehorse was to geld him. “He was a ridgling anyway,” Schadt said.

Following the procedure, Daley was reacquainted with Odds On Amethyst and the freshman started showing some of the talent he’d hinted at in training over the winter.

His first qualifier for Daley produced a 1:58 2/5 winning qualifier with an impressive 27 2/5 final quarter on July 26. A month later he raced in a late closing event at Tioga Downs and exhibited a brilliant turn of speed while acting a little green. Daley had him well in front hitting the three quarters in 1:25 flat but Odds On Amethyst couldn’t carry his speed through the wire, finishing second.

The scene shifted to Ontario where Odds On Amethyst may have seemed overmatched against the best 2-year-old trotters in North America in the Wellwood Memorial. It was that race that convinced Schadt that she had a horse of quality. “Dan had to pretty much bring him to a complete stop to avoid Father Patrick in the stretch and then was able to start him up and have him finish well,” said Schadt on Odds On Amethyst’s September 6 effort. “That’s not an easy thing to do with a trotter, especially a two-year-old.”

In the final, Odds On Amethyst again showed that blistering speed by crossing to the top from post seven before the field hit the turn in a blistering 27 1/5 opening quarter. The gelding was able to relax the second quarter and eventually finished fifth, clearly overmatched by Father Patrick, who starts in the first division (race 5) on Friday from post three.

On Friday evening in Lexington, Odds On Amethyst returns to Schadt and picks up Tim Tetrick for the first time. The trainer has nothing but high praise and admiration for the job that Daley has done with the horse. At the same time she believes that things will go smoothly at the Red Mile for her and her horse.

“This is just a great place to race a horse. I love the surface here,” said Schadt.

Odds On Amethyst drew post four in a field of seven that includes Exodus Hanover (post seven), a six-time winner in nine career starts for trainer Steve Elliott. Exodus Hanover captured a division of the Reynolds at Vernon Downs in 1:55 2/5 on September 5 and most recently was third in the $260,000 Pennsylvania Sire Stakes championships at Harrah’s Philadelphia on September 15.

[DRF HARNESS: Sign Up for the FREE DRF Harness Newsletter Today!]

Another talented young colt will head to the post in the third division. The Jimmy Takter trained Trixton will seek his fourth win in five career starts from post seven in race 10.

Also on the card, fillies are in the spotlight with a trio of Bluegrass races. She’s A Great Lady champion Precocious Beauty, Champlain winner She’s Da Bomb and Gallie Bythe Beach headline their respective divisions.

Post time for the 11-race card is 7 p.m.