Two-time Grade 1 winner Bob Le Beau and Grand National (Gr. 1) victor Dawalan will square off Saturday for the National Steeplechase Association’s earnings title in the 46th edition of the $100,000 Marion duPont Scott Colonial Cup (Gr. 1).
The Colonial Cup, centerpiece of a talent-laden edition of the Marion duPont Scott Colonial Cup meet at Springdale Race Course in Camden, S.C., also will have a role in deciding the year’s Eclipse Award winner as America’s top steeplechase horse.
Also entered for the Colonial Cup was Jacqueline Ohrstrom’s Demonstrative, the reigning Eclipse champion who won the 2 3/4-mile race in 2012. First post time for the seven-race program has been moved up to 12:15 p.m.
The Fields Stable’s Bob Le Beau leads the earnings table with 2015 purses totaling $216,250. Trained by Elizabeth Voss, the Irish-bred will be making his first start since winning Belmont Park’s Lonesome Glory Handicap (Gr. 1) on Sept. 24.
In his prior start, Bob Le Beau won Saratoga Race Course’s New York Turf Writers Cup Handicap (Gr. 1). Jack Doyle has the mount.
Irv Naylor’s Dawalan, a talented recent import, finished third to Bob Le Beau in the Lonesome Glory, his American debut. The French-bred sparkled in the Grand National at Far Hills, N.J. on Oct. 17, when he won America’s richest jump race by a length. He has NSA earnings of $195,000 and is the only other horse eligible for the Lonesome Glory Champions Award as the year’s top earner.
Ross Geraghty returns to ride Dawalan, who heads a three-horse entry of leading owner Naylor and trainer Cyril Murphy. Rawnaq, another recent import, finished third in the Grand National, and Able Deputy returned from an extended layoff to take third money in the International Gold Cup’s David L. “Zeke” Ferguson Memorial (Gr. 3) on Oct. 24. Sean McDermott rides Rawnaq, and Carol-Ann Sloan will be aboard Able Deputy.
Richard Valentine will saddle Demonstrative, who showed signs that he has recovered from a lung infection that compromised his starts at Saratoga and in the Grand National.
Winner of the Calvin Houghland Iroquois (Gr. 1) in May, Demonstrative pulled away to a 2 1/4-length victory over Bob Le Beau in a training flat race at the Montpelier Hunt Races in Virginia on Nov. 7. Darren Nagle will ride Demonstrative.
Flying Elvis Stable’s Diplomat won the Ferguson Memorial in his first start for trainer Kate Dalton, who named her husband, veteran jockey Bernie Dalton, to ride the 2015 Carolina Cup winner on Saturday.
Magalen O. Bryant’s Gustavian returned from an extended break to finish second in the Ferguson Memorial. Paddy Young, who has locked up the year’s jockey championship by wins and narrowly leads Doyle by purses, will ride for his wife, trainer Leslie Young.
Jack Fisher is assured his fourth straight title as champion trainer, and he will be looking to add to his million-dollar season when he saddles Bruton Street-US’s The Nephew in the Colonial Cup. The Irish-bred import won a Far Hills Ratings Handicap in his U.S. debut. Connor Hankin will ride.
All Together, a former member of Fisher’s stable, is pursuing his first victory for owner-trainer David Jacobson since being claimed at Saratoga. The classy Danzig veteran most recently finished fourth in the Grand National. Steve Pateman, a top Australian jump jockey, has the mount.
Tamara McSorley’s Lune de Caro sustained his first defeat over fences in Far Hills’ Foxbrook Champion Hurdle, and he will be attempting to rebound against a strong, seasoned field. Trained by Racing Hall of Fame member Jonathan Sheppard, the Texas-bred will be ridden for the first time by Mark Beecher.
American Steeplechasing’s other active Hall of Fame member, Janet Elliot, will saddle Gregory Hawkins’ Alajmal, who finished seventh in the Grand National. The 2013 Colonial Cup winner will be ridden by Kieran Norris.
Here is the field for the $100,000 Marion duPont Scott Colonial Cup (Gr. 1).
Diplomat. 2009 b. g., Kitten’s Joy—Waki Affair, by Miswaki. Owner: Flying Elvis Stable. Trainer: Kate Dalton. Jockey: Bernie Dalton. Breeders: Ken and Sarah Ramsey (Ky.) 2015 record: 7-3-0-0, $125,000. 2014 NSA record: No starts. Drew away to 6 1/2-length victory in International Gold Cup’s David L. “Zeke” Ferguson Memorial (Gr. 3). Claimed from victory in Saratoga optional allowance hurdle on Sept. 2 and finished seventh in New York Turf Writers Cup (Gr. 1). Led at last in A. P. Smithwick Memorial (Gr. 1) on Aug. 6 and faded to finish sixth, beaten 4 1/14 lengths. Began 2015 season with half-length victory in $75,000 Carolina Cup for novices. Bred by champion owners-breeders Ken and Sarah Ramsey and is a full brother to stakes-placed Kitten Love.
Demonstrative. 2007 b. g., Elusive Quality–Loving Pride, by Quiet American. Owner: Jacqueline Ohrstrom. Trainer: Richard Valentine. Jockey: Darren Nagle. Breeder: Gainsborough Farm (Ky.) 2015 record: 5-2-0-1, $117,000. 2014 record: 6-3-1-1, $362,500. Finished ninth after landing awkwardly at late fence in Grand National (Gr. 1). Finished third in the A. P. Smithwick Memorial (Gr. 1) before being pulled up in New York Turf Writers Cup Handicap (Gr. 1). Scored his second victory in the $150,000 Calvin Houghland Iroquois (Gr. 1) on May 9. Secured 2014 Eclipse Award with consecutive Grade 1 victories in New York Turf Writers, Lonesome Glory Handicap, and Grand National. Also won 2012 New York Turf Writers Cup (Gr. 1) and Colonial Cup (Gr. 1). Was 2010 three-year-old champion.
The Nephew (Ire). 2008 b. g., Indian River (Fr)—Charlottine, by Spectrum. Owner: Bruton Street-US. Trainer: Jack Fisher. Jockey: Connor Hankin. Breeder: Nicholas Teeham (Ire). 2015 NSA record: 1-1-0-0, $21,000. In his first U.S. start, won Far Hills Ratings Handicap by 2 1/2 lengths. Had three handicap wins in 12 starts in England in 2014.
Bob Le Beau (Ire). 2007 dk. b. or. br. g., Big Bad Bob—Shine Silently, by Bering (GB). Owner: The Fields Stable. Trainer: Elizabeth Voss. Jockey: Jack Doyle. Breeder: Anamoine Ltd. (Ire). 2015 record: 5-4-0-0, $216,250. 2014 record: 4-0-1-0, $9,450. Won Belmont Park’s Lonesome Glory Handicap (Gr. 1) by a half-length on Sept. 24. Scored runaway victory in New York Turf Writers Cup (Gr. 1) on Aug. 27 after fourth in Saratoga’s A. P. Smithwick Memorial (Gr. 1) on Aug. 6. Opened 2015 with win in National Hunt Cup (Gr. 3) at Radnor Hunt Races in suburban Philadelphia on May 16 and won Parx flat race for hurdlers on July 12.
All Together. 2005 b. g., Danzig–Unify, by Farma Way. Owner-trainer: David Jacobson. Jockey: Steve Pateman. Breeder: Jayeff B Stables (Ky.). 2015 NSA record: 8-0-2-2, $59,750. 2014 record: 7-1-3-0, $62,000. Classy, consistent Danzig gelding finished fourth in Grand National (Gr. 1) on Oct. 17. Claimed by New York flat trainer from an Aug. 5 optional allowance hurdle for $30,000, then finished fourth in New York Turf Writers Cup (Gr. 1) and third in a Saratoga optional allowance hurdle on Sept. 2. Finished fifth in Belmont Park’s Lonesome Glory Handicap (Gr. 1) on Sept. 24.
Dawalan (Fr). 2010 gr. or ro. g., Azamour (Ire)—Daltawa, by Miswaki. Owner: Irvin S. Naylor. Trainer: Cyril Murphy. Jockey: Ross Geraghty. Breeder: Aga Khan Studs (Fr). 2015 NSA record: 2-1-0-1, $195,000. Jumped into title contention with one-length victory in Grand National (Gr. 1) at Far Hills, N.J., on Oct. 17. In first U.S. start, finished third, beaten 1 1/2 lengths, in Belmont Park’s Lonesome Glory Handicap (Gr. 1) on Sept. 24. Accomplished handicap hurdler was overwhelmed in two handicap stakes at Cheltenham and Aintree this past spring before being imported.
Rawnaq (Ire). 2007 b. g., Azamour (Ire)—Sharemata, by Dayoun (Ire). Owner: Irvin S. Naylor. Trainer: Cyril Murphy. Jockey: Sean McDermott. Breeder: Jim Monaghan (Ire). 2015 NSA record: 1-0-0-1, $30,000. In his first U.S. start, closed gamely to finish third in Far Hills’ Grand National (Gr. 1), beaten a length. Won an allowance hurdle at Down Royal in June and then finished close second in Bellewstown handicap hurdle stakes. Lost rider in the Guinness Galway Handicap Hurdle.
Lune de Caro. 2009 gr. or ro. g., Cozzene—Widow’s Mite (Ire), by Sadler’s Wells. Owner: Tamara McSorley. Trainer: Jonathan Sheppard. Jockey: Mark Beecher. Breeder: La Bahia Stud (Tex.) 2015 NSA record: 4-3-0-0, $76,000. Fell from unbeaten ranks over fences when fifth in Far Hills’ Foxbrook Champion Hurdle on Oct. 17. Won Saratoga allowance on Aug. 19 and Ratings Hurdle at Parx on July 14. Won maiden hurdle at High Hope shortly after winning flat maiden at Cincinnati’s Belterra Park on May 3.
Able Deputy (GB). 2007 b. g., Lomitas (GB)—Island Colony, by Pleasant Colony. Owner: Irvin S. Naylor. Trainer: Cyril Murphy. Carol-Ann Sloan. Breeders: Charles and David Hodge (GB). 2015 record: 2-0-0-1, $5,000. 2014 NSA record: 2-1-0-0, $30,000. Returned from year-long break to finish third in International Gold Cup’s David L. “Zeke” Ferguson Memorial (Gr. 3), then was pulled up in Montpelier’s Noel Laing Handicap. Won 2014 Ferguson and Worcester’s Toteplacepot Handicap.
Gustavian. 2006 b. g., Giant’s Causeway–Mossflower, by Affirmed. Owner: Magalen O. Bryant. Trainer: Leslie Young. Jockey: Paddy Young. Breeder: Whitewood Stable (Ky.) 2015 record: 1-0-1-0, $9,000. 2014 record: 2-0-2-0, $36,000. Returned to races with second in International Gold Cup’s David L. “Zeke” Ferguson Memorial (Gr. 3). Finished second in 2014 Temple Gwathmey (Gr. 3) at Middleburg Spring Races and Calvin Houghland Iroquois (Gr. 1). Finished second in 2013 Grand National (Gr. 1) after winning Belmont’s Lonesome Glory Handicap (Gr. 1).
Alajmal. 2008 b. g., First Samurai—Alattrah, by Shadeed. Owner: Gregory D. Hawkins. Trainer: Janet Elliot. Jockey: Kieran Norris. Breeder: Shadwell Farm (Ky.) 2015 record: 3-0-0-0, $6,000. 2014 NSA record: No starts. Finished seventh in Grand National (Gr. 1) at Far Hills, N.J. In first race in 14 months, finished fifth in New York Turf Writers Cup (Gr. 1), then was eighth in Belmont Park’s Lonesome Glory Handicap (Gr. 1). Bookended his 2013 season with victories in the Carolina Cup and Marion duPont Scott Colonial Cup (Gr. 1).