1. Sports
Send to a Friend via Email

Your suggestion is on its way!

An email with a link to:

http://horseracing.about.com/od/triplecrowncontenders/p/aaUnionRags.htm

was emailed to:

Thanks for sharing About.com with others!

You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Discuss in my forum

Union Rags

By

Union Rags

Union Rags

© Vanessa Ng

Connections:

Trainer:   Michael Matz
Jockey:   John Velazquez
Owner:   Chadds Ford Stable

Comments:

Won his debut, the Saratoga Special (G2), and the Champagne (G1) but was denied in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1) as the favorite, finishing second to Hansen. The dual qualifier came back at 3 to win the Fountain of Youth (G2) by 4 lengths then finished third in the Florida Derby (G1). Had a bad start in the Kentucky Derby and was 18th early then moved up to finish 7th, beaten 7 1/2 lengths. Skipped the Preakness and waited for the Belmont.

Stats:

Foaling Date:   3-3-2009
Pedigree:   Dixie Union - Tempo by Gone West
Dosage Profile:   9-1-10-2-0
Dosage Index/CD:   2.14   0.77   (dual qualifier)
2011 Record:   4 Starts: 3 - 1 - 0, $858,800
Best Beyer Figure:   95

More Info:

Post race comments:

After winning the Champagne (G1)

Trainer Michael Matz said, "He's always acted like a nice horse from when we first got him. He's trained well this period he's been off. The timing is great now. The 7 weeks didn't hurt him between races. The (traffic) is going to happen with 2-year-olds, and they find a way out of it, don't they? I think he's a real good horse. Anytime you can win going five-eighths with me, you know they're nice horses. I've had horses on and off for Mrs. Wyeth, and she said to me, 'I'm going to have a good one for you,' and I think she does."

Jockey Javier Castellano said, "My plan 'A' was to be close to the pace. He's a really nice horse, and you can put him wherever you want. Unfortunately, in the first jump (Right to Vote) squeezed me, bumped really hard, and I lost the momentum right there. Now I had to change my plan to 'B' - come from behind horses. But he's an amazing horse - nothing bothers him. He got dirt in the face, he was blocked all the way on the trip. I tried to wait for my best opportunity to make that move."

Owner Phyllis Wyeth said, "I can't even talk. We didn't know what kind of horse we really had. I think he's good. We always had hopes for him, but it's really an honor, because my mother bred all the mares, and (he's) by my father's stallion. It's what they all lived to produce. It really is an honor."

After finishing second in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1)

Trainer Michael Matz said, “They were wide on the first turn; they were wide on the second turn. He (Javier Castellano) said the other horse had it his own way, and he (Union Rags) galloped out good and strong. He said, ‘one more jump and we would have had him.’ I didn’t get a good draw. I guess that’s racing. What are you going to do? It’s one of those things. I wish I had an answer for you. It’s disappointing, that’s for sure, but I guess that’s horseracing.”

After winning the Fountain of Youth (G2)

Trainer Michael Matz said, “You never know after a four-month rest – Do you have the horse fit enough? Did you do this? Did you do that? You always go through 51 questions. I guess we did it right this time.”

Jockey Julien Leparoux said, “I was hoping he would run a good race, but I was not expecting that. He’s such an easy horse to ride and did everything so easily. I didn’t hit him once. I just showed him the stick a couple times. I’m sure he was not 100 percent today, which means he should just get better.”

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.