News and STORIES
Winning Impression Pointed Toward Derby, Toby's Heart Favored for Bolton Landing
Author: Clint Goodman
Published: Tuesday August 18, 2020
West Point Thoroughbreds and Pearl Racing's Winning Impression is being pointed toward the Sept. 5 Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve (G1) at Churchill Downs. The news came from a tweet by West Point Thoroughbreds on Aug. 17.
"Winning Impression will point for (the) Kentucky Derby," read the Tweet. "Know he'll be a huge longshot but Dallas Stewart longshots have come runnin' in the past. Paynter gelding has always trained well at Churchill Downs and should appreciate mile and a quarter. Joe Rocco Jr. rides."
Winning Impression's Career
Winning Impression is trained by Dallas Stewart, and he broke his maiden at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots in December 2019. He has six starts so far in 2020, with his most notable performance being a third-place effort in one of the May 2 divisions of the Arkansas Derby (G1) at Oaklawn Park.
For his Arkansas Derby performance, he was awarded 20 qualifying points on the Road to the Kentucky Derby. He holds the 20th spot on the Derby leaderboard.
Winning Impression ran back on July 8 in the Indiana Derby (G3) at Indiana Grand, where he finished off the board. He also took seventh in the Runhappy Ellis Park Derby at Ellis Park on Aug. 9.
He was bred in Kentucky by WinStar Farm and is out of the Unbridled's Song mare Unbridled Sonya. Winning Impressions was purchased by West Point Thoroughbreds and John Glenn for $77,000 from the consignment of Off the Hook at the 2019 Ocala Breeders' Sales Spring Sale of 2-Year-Olds in Training.
The gelding has a career record of 1-1-2 from nine starts with earnings of $98,552.
In other news, Toby's Heart is favored for the $85,000 Bolton Landing Stakes at Saratoga Race Course on Aug. 19. The field will include eight 2-year-old fillies going 5 1/2 furlongs on the turf.
Toby Heart is trained by Brian Lynch in partnership with Terry Hamilton. The Jack Milton filly won by 6 3/4 lengths in her first start on June 4 at Churchill Downs. The race was the same distance as the Bolton Landing.
"She showed me she had some talent prior to it with her works, so it was great to see it produce that sort of performance in her debut," Lynch said. "Her works since have been great, and she seems to be doing really well. We're looking forward to taking the next step here."
The filly will make her stakes debut. On Aug. 13, she put in a final work in Kentucky, going four furlongs in :48 4/5 over Churchill's main track.
"I think she's up against horses that haven't done much more than her," Lynch said. "It'll be interesting to see. She's been a very exciting filly and has done everything great. We feel she's the real thing, but until you rack them up and turn them loose, you don't know. But she gives me the feeling that she's a nice filly in the making."
Lynch said that the performance could lead the filly to added distances in her 2020 campaign.
"I feel good about her when the time comes to stretch her out because she's a very easy filly to train," Lynch said. "She relaxes in the morning in the gallops and she's not too hard on herself. When you drop the clutch on her, you usually get a tone of gas. The 5 1/2 furlongs is a good transition coming out of her last race. The sky is the limit if she takes that next step forward for us."
She will break from post 6 under Jose Ortiz.