Leading owner Irv Naylor’s Jamarjo and two past winners headline Saturday’s $30,000 Daniel Van Clief Memorial, the featured optional allowance hurdle the 40th annual Foxfield Spring Races.
First post time at the Charlottesville, Va., course is 1:30 p.m. for a five-race program that features several full fields.
Trained by Leslie Young, Jamarjo will be making his first 2017 jumps start in the 2 1/8-mile Van Clief over National Fences. Last year, he finished second in the Lonesome Glory Handicap (Gr. 1) at Belmont Park and was fourth in the season-ending Marion duPont Scott Colonial Cup (Gr. 1) at Camden, S.C.
Paddy Young, the five-time champion jockey, has the mount.
Hishi Soar, the 2016 Van Clief winner, now races for the estate of Randy Rouse, who died in early April at the age of 100. Rouse also trained Hishi Soar last year, and the victory made him the oldest trainer ever to saddle a Thoroughbred winner.
Hishi Soar has not had a sanctioned start this year, but he won a Virginia point-to-point race only days before the death of his owner, who received the National Steeplechase Association’s leading honor, the F. Ambrose Clark Award, in January.
Now trained by E. Kevin Palmer, Hishi Soar will be ridden by Gerard Galligan.
Trainer Jimmy Day named Keri Brion to ride Bruce Smart’s Orchestra Leader, the 2015 Van Clief Memorial winner. The veteran hurdler also won last year’s featured race at the Foxfield Fall meet.
Welcome Here Farm’s Second Amendment comes into the Van Clief from a fifth-place finish in the Steeplechase of Charleston’s featured optional allowance hurdle on April 8. Trainer Elizabeth Merryman named top apprentice jockey Brendan Crowley to ride.
Ross Geraghty will be aboard Barracuda Stable’s Red Hammer for trainer Ricky Hendriks. The British-bred gelding finished fourth in the Carolina Cup on April 1.
Here is the Van Clief Memorial field in post-position order. The horses’ National Steeplechase Association ratings are in parentheses at the end of their profiles.
Jamarjo (Ire). 2007 b. g., Marju—Athlumney Lady, by Lycius. Owner; Irvin S. Naylor. Trainer: Leslie Young. Jockey: Paddy Young. Breeder: Frank Dunne (Ire). 2017 record: 1-0-0-0, $1,000. 2016 record: 5-1-1-2, $55,500. 2015 record: 1-1-0-0, $15,000. Finished fifth in flat race at 2017 Tryon Block House. Finished second in Belmont Park’s 2016 Lonesome Glory Handicap (Gr. 1), then was fourth in Marion duPont Scott Colonial Cup (Gr. 1). Won 2016 Radnor Ratings Handicap, then was third in Monmouth Park Ratings Handicap. Finished third in Daniel Van Clief Memorial at Foxfield Spring. Returned to the races after winning the 2013 Charleston Cup and won 2015 Charleston Cup. (129)
Hishi Soar. 2007 dk. b. or br. g., Theatrical (Ire)—Go On Baby, by With Approval. Owner: Estate of Randolph D. Rouse. Trainer: E. Kevin Palmer. Jockey: Gerard Galligan. Breeder: Kaleem Shah (Ky.) 2016 record: 4-1-0-0, $16,800. 2015 record: 3-0-0-1, $3,500. 2014 record: 2-1-0-0, $6,000. Won 2016 Daniel Van Clief Memorial to make his owner the oldest trainer at age 99 to saddle a U.S. winner. Finished fifth in Foxfield Fall optional allowance hurdle and Virginia Fall Ratings Handicap, then was ninth in Montpelier handicap. (110)
So Outspoken. 2010 b. g., Bernardini—Green Door, by Danzig. Owner: B More Hopeful Stables. Trainer: Jazz Napravnik. Jockey: Gus Dahl. Breeder: Austin and Brenda Paul (Ont.) 2016 NSA record: 5-0-0-0, $1,500. 2015 record: 11-2-0-0, $32,950. Finished fourth in 2016 Budweiser Imperial Cup optional allowance hurdle at Aiken Spring, then lost rider in Stoneybrook Steeplechase Ratings Handicap and was pulled up in Block House optional allowance hurdle. Lost rider in Shawan Downs Ratings Handicap. (102)
Arrakis. 2007 dk. b. or br. g., Royal Academy—Quinn, by Theatrical (Ire). Owner: Over Creek Farm. Trainer: Julie Gomena. Jockey: Open. Breeder: Iron County Farms (Ky.). 2017 record: 1-0-0-0, $1,500. 2016 record: 2-0-1-0, $5,550. 2015 record: 8-0-2-1, $15,550. Finished fourth in featured optional allowance hurdle at 2017 Steeplechase of Charleston. Finished sixth in 2016 Georgia Cup optional allowance hurdle, then was second in Block House optional allowance hurdle. Finished fourth in International Gold Cup’s 2015 David L. “Zeke” Ferguson Memorial (Gr. 3), then fourth in Charleston Cup. (110)
Outlaw Cody Z. 2008 ch. m., Ten Most Wanted, Ciel Cody, by Sky Classic. Owner: Stephany W.S. Harper. Trainer: Alicia Murphy. Jeff Murphy. Breeder: Cedar Ridge Farm (N.Y.) 2016 record: 1-0-0-1, $2,000. 2015 record: 3-1-0-0, $15,000. 2014 record: No starts. Finished third in Stoneybrook ratings handicap in only 2016 start. Finished fifth in Iroquois’ 2015 Margaret Currey Henley after winning Foxfield Spring maiden hurdle in jumps debut. (95)
Absolum. 2008 dk. b. or br. g., Fantasticat—Zenon, by Hawkster. Owner: William E. Riddle. Trainer: Billy Meister. Jockey: Keith Dalton. Breeder: William E. Riddle (Pa.) 2017 record: 1-0-0-0, $0. 2016 record: 2-0-0-0, $900. 2015 record: 4-1-0-1, $17,000. Refused to start in ratings handicap at 2017 Middleburg Spring Races. Fell in Radnor Ratings Handicap after opening 2016 season with sixth in Middleburg Spring Ratings Handicap. (112)
Red Hammer (GB). 2012 b. g., Falco—Vole de Printemps, by Della Francesca. Owner: Barracuda Stable. Trainer: Ricky Hendriks. Jockey: Ross Geraghty. Breeder: Pontchartrain Stud (GB). 2017 record: 1-0-0-0, $3,750. 2016 NSA record: No starts. Finished fourth in 2017 Carolina Cup. Raced in England’s juvenile handicap ranks in 2016 and secured first career victory in Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, in March. (115)
Dr. K’eogh. 2012 dk. b. or br. g., Kitten’s Joy—Virginia Reel, by Gone West. Owner-trainer: Billy Meister. Jockey: Keith Dalton. Breeder: NY Kitten Foals LLC (N.Y.) 2017 record: 1-0-0-0, $0. 2016 NSA record: 1-0-0-0, $0. Lost rider in claiming hurdle at 2017 Steeplechase at Charleston. Pulled up in 2016 Virginia Fall ratings handicap in first jumps start. (101)
Longing to Travel. 2011 b. g., Langfuhr—Traveling, by Miswaki. Owner: Buckshot Racing Stables. Trainer: Neil Morris. Jockey: Kieran Norris. Breeder: Buckshot Racing Stables. 2017 record: 2-1-1-0, $15,600. 2016 record: 5-1-1-0, $12,900. Won claiming hurdle at 2017 Steeplechase of Charleston after second in Aiken Spring ratings handicap. Won Aiken Fall maiden claimer after second at same level at Virginia Fall. (110)
Orchestra Leader. 2009 b. g., Van Nistelrooy—Magic of Life, by Seattle Slew. Owner: S. Bruce Smart Jr. Trainer: Jimmy Day. Jockey: Keri Brion. Breeder: Strategy Bloodstock (Ky.) 2016 record: 10-2-2-0, $49,100. 2015 record: 8-1-5-1, $52,000. 2014 record: 6-1-0-2, $12,500. Won 2016 Foxfield Fall’s featured optional allowance hurdle before losing rider in Montpelier’s Noel Laing Handicap and fourth in Colonial Cup ratings handicap. Finished second in 2016 Aiken Spring’s Budweiser Imperial Cup optional allowance hurdle and Daniel Van Clief Memorial, a race he won in 2015. (118)
Second Amendment. 2010 gr. or ro. g., National Anthem (GB)—Bullet Card, by Press Card. Owner: Welcome Here Farm. Trainer: Elizabeth M. Merryman. Jockey: Brendan Crowley. Breeder: Nina H. Gardner (Pa.) 2017 record: 1-0-0-0, $1,500. 2016 record: 7-1-3-0, $27,450. 2015 NSA record: 2-1-0-0, $14,000. Opened 2017 with fifth in Steeplechase of Charleston’s featured optional allowance hurdle. Won 2016 Virginia Fall ratings handicap and was a close second in Colonial Cup ratings handicap. Closed for second in 2016 Radnor conditioned allowance, then was fifth in Parx Ratings Handicap and eighth in Saratoga allowance hurdle. Finished second in allowance hurdle at 2016 Virginia Gold Cup. (118)