Augustin Stables’ Rainiero extended his winning streak to four when he pulled away to a 14 1/4-length victory in the feature race of the 45th annual High Hope Steeplechase at Lexington’s Kentucky Horse Park on Sunday, May 20.
High Hope Stables’ Tizallaboutme finished second in the $20,000 starter allowance for horses who had run for a claiming price of $20,000 or less in 2011 or this year. Manown Kisor’s Sumo Power took fourth. Rainiero, a 10-year-old gelding who was bred in Chile, ran the hurdle race’s 2 1/8 miles in 3:59.60.
Trained by Richard Valentine, Rainiero was ridden by Matt McCarron, who collected his 202nd career victory. A 20-year steeplechase veteran, McCarron currently ranks ninth all-time by victories. He is the son of longtime Maryland jockey Gregg McCarron, older brother of Racing Hall of Fame jockey Chris McCarron.
Rainiero kept alive a streak that began when he was entered for a $15,000 claiming price and won the Virginia Fall’s Bon Nouvel optional allowance on Oct. 1, his first start of 2011. He subsequently won an optional allowance at the Montpelier Hunt Races in Virginia on Nov. 5 and closed out the season with a score in the Hobkirk Hill starter allowance at the Colonial Cup in Camden, S.C., on Nov. 19.