Michael A. Smith’s Le Chevalier, a solid second in the Virginia Gold Cup on May 4, is one of six nominees to the $35,000 Radnor Hunt Cup, the marquee race of the 89th annual Radnor Hunt Races in Malvern, Pa., on Saturday, May 18.
The popular race meet benefits the Brandywine Conservancy, and it will also feature the $35,000 National Hunt Cup, an allowance hurdle, and the $30,000 Thompson Memorial, a ratings handicap for horses ranked at 120 or lower. First post time is 1:30 p.m. at Radnor’s W. Burling Cocks Memorial Race Course.
Trained by Julie Gomena, Le Chevalier went off as the Virginia Gold Cup’s 2.70-1 favorite after finishing second in the Middleburg Hunt Cup and again finished behind winner Andi’amu. The 10-year-old Broken Vow gelding had won Virginia Fall’s National Sporting Library & Museum Cup last October.
Also nominated to the 3¼-mile Radnor Hunt Cup from the Virginia Gold Cup was Irv Naylor’s Super Saturday, who finished third after a fifth-place finish in the Middleburg Hunt Cup for trainer Kathy Neilson.
Stewart Strawbridge’s Kings Apollo missed an opportunity to defend his 2018 Winterthur Bowl victory when the Delaware meet was canceled on May 5. Trained by Sanna Neilson, the 10-year-old finished fourth in the Middleburg Hunt Cup on April 20.
Trainer Elizabeth Voss nominated Armata Stables’ Wildcatter, who went off course in the Grand National in Butler, Md., on April 20. The 11-year-old was unplaced in his two 2018 starts.
Sarah R. Shepherd’s Curve of Stones has transferred to timber racing from hurdles, and he finished fourth in the Virginia Gold Cup’s Steeplethon Stakes over a course of mixed obstacles. The 8-year-old Arch gelding is trained by David M. Bourke.
Completing the nominees is owner-trainer Billy Meister’s Dr. K’eogh, who finished third in a Foxfield Spring maiden timber race on April 27.
Here are the six nominees to the $35,000 Radnor Hunt Cup.
Curve of Stones 2011 gr. or ro. g., Arch—Exceptionally, by El Prado (Ire). Owner: Sarah Rebecca Shepherd. Trainer: David M. Bourke. Breeder: Audley Farm (Va.) 2019 record: 2-0-0-0, $2,800. 2018 record: 3-0-0-0, $2,100. 2017 record: 8-0-0-1, $18,100. Made change to steeplethons in 2019 and finished fifth at Middleburg Spring and fourth at the Virginia Gold Cup. Finished sixth in 2018 Far Hills ratings handicap. Began 2018 with fifth in Shawan Downs rating handicap and was eighth in Virginia Fall ratings handicap. Finished third in 2017 David L. “Zeke” Ferguson Memorial (Gr. 2).
Dr. K’eogh. 2012 dk. b. or br. g., Kitten’s Joy—Virginia Reel, by Gone West. Owner-trainer: Billy Meister. Breeder: NY Kitten Foals LLC (N.Y.) 2019 record: 1-0-0-1, $1,500. 2018 record: 3-0-0-0, $0. 2017 NSA record: 2-0-0-0, $0. Opened 2019 with third in Foxfield Spring timber maiden. Pulled up in three 2018 starts.
Kings Apollo (GB). 2009 b. g., King’s Theater (Ire)—Temple Dancer, by Magic Ring. Owner: Stewart Strawbridge. Trainer: Sanna Neilson. Breeders: M. Watt and Executors of Miss J. John (GB). 2019 record: 1-0-0-0, $1,500. 2018 record: 3-1-1-1, $35,500. 2017 record: 3-1-0-0, $9,750. Finished fourth in 2019 Middleburg Hunt Cup. Won 2018 Winterthur Bowl by 5¾ lengths, then finished third in Shawan Downs’ Brown Advisory Legacy Chase and second in the New Jersey Hunt Cup. Won a 2017 Winterthur maiden timber race after fourth in division of John Rush Streett Memorial at My Lady’s Manor.
Le Chevalier. 2009 g. or ro. g., Broken Vow—Orellana, by With Approval. Owner: Michael A. Smith. Trainer: Julie Gomena. Breeder: Haras du Mezeray (Ky.) 2019 record: 2-0-2-0, $23,400. 2018 record: 4-1-2-1, $54,900. 2017 record: 1-0-0-1, $3,000. Finished good second in 2019 Virginia Gold Cup after second in Middleburg Hunt Cup. Won 2018 National Sporting Library & Museum Cup, then was third in International Gold Cup. Finished second in Virginia Gold Cup and Middleburg Hunt Cup. Won the 2016 New Jersey Hunt Cup.
Super Saturday. 2009 gr. or ro. g., Any Given Saturday—Lady Aloma, by Cozzene. Owner: Irvin S. Naylor. Trainer: Kathy Neilson. Breeder: Walton Breeders (Ky.) 2019 record: 2-0-0-1, $11,200. 2018 record: 6-1-2-1, $51,800. 2017 record: 6-0-1-1, $13,400. Finished third in 2019 Virginia Gold Cup after fifth in Middleburg Hunt Cup. Finished second in 2018 International Gold Cup and Pennsylvania Hunt Cup after fifth in National Sporting Library & Museum Cup. Won 2018 Middleburg Hunt Cup, then was third in the Virginia Gold Cup and fourth in Radnor Hunt Cup.
Wildcatter. 2008 dk. b. or br. g., Tale of the Cat—Cita My Dear, by Kris S. Owner: Armata Stables. Trainer: Elizabeth Voss. Breeder: Ramona S. Bass (Ky.) 2019 record: 1-0-0-0, $0. 2018 record: 2-0-0-0, $0. 2017 record: 2-0-0-1, $3,000. Went off course in 2019 Grand National. Pulled up in 2018 My Lady’s Manor and refused fence late in Maryland Hunt Cup. Finished third in the 2017 Radnor Hunt Cup after falling in Grand National. Finished second and placed first in 2015 Radnor Hunt Cup.