By Tom LaMarra
After seven of 25 races in the 2018 MATCH Series, several horses have established themselves in the standings for bonuses that will be awarded to breeders and certifiers in the Mid-Atlantic region.
Four organizations are each offering $10,000 ($5,000 for the top colt or gelding and $5,000 for the top filly or mare) based on points in the final overall MATCH Series standings. The Maryland Horse Breeders Association, Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association of New Jersey and Pennsylvania Horse Breeders Association will pay the bonuses to the breeder of each horse, while the Delaware Certified Thoroughbred Program will pay the bonuses to the certifier of each horse.
Oak Bluffs, a gelding bred in New Jersey by Patricia Generazio, has accumulated 15 points based on a victory in the Pennsylvania Governor’s Cup June 2 and a third-place finish in the Jim McKay Turf Sprint May 19. He is the current leader of the 3-Year-Olds and Up Sprint–Turf Division for Mary Eppler, his owner and trainer.
Sunny Ridge, owned and bred by Dennis Drazin, has five points in the New Jersey colt or gelding division via his third-place finish in the May 26 Salvator Mile at Monmouth Park. The winner of the Salvator Mile, Page McKenney, leads the Pennsylvania-bred colt or gelding division with 10 points.
Dr. James Bryant and Linda Davis bred Page McKenney, another Eppler trainee for owners Adam Staple and Jalin Stable who tops the MATCH Series 3-Year-Olds and Up Long–Dirt Division. The Pennsylvania-bred colt or gelding division has five horses that have earned points; Jaguar Poz, bred and owned by James Hess, is second with five points based on his third-place finish in the Governor’s Cup.
Rocky Policy, bred by Shamrock Farm, has seven points to lead the Maryland-bred filly and mare division. She finished second in the June 2 Penn Ladies Dash for owner Richard Vermillion and trainer Dale Capuano. Owner/breeder Linda Zang’s Lewisfield, third for trainer Jeff Runco in the Maryland Sprint Stakes May 19, has five points to top the Maryland-bred colt and gelding division.
Thus far, the Delaware Certified program has had one representative in Daylight Ahead, who is owned, bred and certified by Winners Circle Partners VIII and trained by Hugh and Demelza McMahon. The mare, who has competed in The Very One Stakes and Penn Ladies Dash and has two points, is a dual qualifier because she also is Maryland-bred.
The MATCH website now has leaderboards for the breeder and certifier standings. Click on the Leaderboards tab at the top of the homepage or the drop-down menu on Leaderboards on the home page.