Catch Them if You Can

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Contact: Brian Nadeau

Notes Writer/Media Relations

[email protected]

  

Catch Them if You Can

Davis Sprinters Blameworthy, Quick Tempo Have Bright Futures

New Orleans (January 24, 2021) – Chris Davis may not know how far Blameworthy or Quick Tempo will eventually run, but regardless, he knows they’ll get there quickly. Both 3-year-olds have impressed at the meet, while hinting at big things to come for a trainer who is looking forward to the ride.

Two Hearts Farm and Don Janes’ Blameworthy might not be as accomplished as his stakes-winning stablemate Quick Tempo but he’s run big in his three career starts, which have all come sprinting at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots. The son of Blame was a clear second behind a pair of highly regarded rivals in Swiftsure and Prate in his first two starts before breaking through with a comfortable 1 ¼-length win January 16. Blameworthy has yet to run past 6 furlongs and he has been on or just off the lead in his three starts. By a Breeders’ Cup Classic winner in Blame, he has the pedigree to stretch out, which is one of the many reasons Davis thinks two turns could be well within reach.

“His mom (Roman Chestnut) has thrown a few horses that have run long,” Davis said. “He’s quick but he relaxes. He breaks sharp and he’s always been naturally a forward horse. But in the mornings, if you don’t ask him, he’ll go :52. He’s not a rank or aggressive horse, he’s just quick. I think he’ll stretch out by the sheer size of him.”

With no sprint stakes for 3-year-olds on the local calendar, and the March 20 TwinSpires.com Louisiana Derby (G2) as a meet-end bullseye for any trainer with a talented sophomore in the barn, Blameworthy will get a chance to progress down that road. Davis isn’t in a rush to tackle the best 3-year-olds on the grounds in the February 13 Risen Star (G2), which figures to come up as one of the stronger Kentucky Derby preps so far this winter, though there’s a good chance Blameworthy will be seen that afternoon.

“We’ll probably stretch him out next time,” Davis said. “Obviously I’m not going to jump straight into the Risen Star but I’ll probably try the allowance race (on the Risen Star card) and see what happens from there. He’s solid and he came out of the race really well.”

Blameworthy hints that there’s more in the tank as he hasn’t switched leads late in his races, though it clearly hasn’t hindered his overall performance. It’s also something he’s only shown in his races and not in his training, which has Davis thinking there’s potentially even more talent under the surface.

“The fact he doesn’t switch leads I think is a mental thing with him because does do it in the morning, Davis said. “But he goes :10 flat on that left lead, so it’s very possible he has another big step forward.”

Blameworthy will get the chance to usurp Dare to Dream Stable’s Quick Tempo for barn supremacy as Davis has opted to back off a colt who packed a lot into four months of a racing as a 2-year-old. The son of Tapizar ended a 3-for-5 juvenile campaign with a win in the local December 19 Sugar Bowl, and while he came out of the race in fine fettle, Davis decided to look down the road, as opposed to the immediate future.

“We’re just going to gear him up for the summer,” Davis said. “We talked, and he had a rough campaign as a 2-year-old, in terms of doing a lot of shipping with him. I’m not convinced at this stage that he really wants to go two turns so we’re going to give him 45 days off and gear him for the summer.”

Quick Tempo logged a lot of travel miles last year, going from Arlington Park to Woodbine to Parx Racing to Keeneland before settling in at Fair Grounds for the Sugar Bowl. He announced his presence on the national scene when second in the Nyquist on Breeders’ Cup Weekend in November at Keeneland and used that as a springboard to a stakes win in the Sugar Bowl, when he blitzed six rivals by 1 ¾ lengths after running 21.47 and 44.57 early.

Brilliantly fast away from the gate, Quick Tempo has yet to be behind a horse at the pace call in any of his five races, which suggests one-turn will be his ultimate calling. Davis isn’t willing to concede he’s strictly a sprinter, but with several lucrative one-turn races on the schedule for 3-year-olds later this summer, the dye has been cast for the immediate future. That could include a return race under the Twin Spires at Churchill Downs on the first Saturday in May, although likely in a spot other than the Kentucky Derby.

“Maybe (we’ll point to) the Pat Day Mile (G2) if he’s ready,” Davis said. “Then maybe the Woody Stephens (G1) at Belmont, go to Saratoga and some of those long sprints they have like the Allen Jerkens (G1) there. As long as he continues going forward, and I don’t see any reason why he won’t.”

Quick Tempo helped spearhead a career-best year for the 32-year-old Davis in 2020. He set personal highs with 181 starters and 32 wins (18%), while earning $801,393, which was just shy of his best mark of $806,373 set the year before. With Blameworthy now added to the mix, Davis’ career figures to remain on an upward trajectory, regardless of how far his talented young colt wants to run.

“If he just wants to just be a good sprinter, then heck, I’ve got two good sprinters in the barn,” Davis said.

That’s not a bad position to be in.

-30-

About Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots: Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots, one of the nation’s oldest racetracks, has been in operation since 1872. Located in New Orleans, LA, Fair Grounds is owned by Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ Global Select Market: CHDN); it also operates a slot-machine gaming facility and 13 off-track betting parlors throughout southeast Louisiana. The 149th Thoroughbred Racing Season – highlighted by the 108th running of the Louisiana Derby – will run from November 26, 2020 through March 28, 2021. More information can be found online at www.FairGroundsRaceCourse.com.

Information set forth in this press release contains various “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (the “Act”) provides certain “safe harbor” provisions for forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements made in this press release are made pursuant to the Act. The reader is cautioned that such forward-looking statements are based on information available at the time and/or management’s good faith belief with respect to future events, and are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual performance or results to differ materially from those expressed in the statements. Forward-looking statements speak only as of the date the statement was made. We assume no obligation to update forward-looking information to reflect actual results, changes in assumptions or changes in other factors affecting forward-looking information. Forward-looking statements are typically identified by the use of terms such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “could,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend,” “may,” “might,” “plan,” “predict,” “project,” “seek,” “should,” “will,” and similar words, although some forward-looking statements are expressed differently.

Although we believe that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are reasonable, we can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from expectations include the following: the effect of economic conditions on our consumers’ confidence and discretionary spending or our access to credit; additional or increased taxes and fees; public perceptions or lack of confidence in the integrity of our business; loss of key or highly skilled personnel; restrictions in our debt facilities limiting our flexibility to operate our business; general risks related to real estate ownership, including fluctuations in market values and environmental regulations; catastrophic events and system failures disrupting our operations, including the impact of natural and other disasters on our operations and our ability to obtain insurance recoveries in respect of such losses; inability to identify and complete acquisition, expansion or divestiture projects, on time, on budget or as planned; difficulty in integrating recent or future acquisitions into our operations; legalization of online real money gaming and sports wagering in the United States, and our ability to capitalize on and predict such legalization; the number of people attending and wagering on live horse races; inability to respond to rapid technological changes in a timely manner; inadvertent infringement of the intellectual property of others; inability to protect our own intellectual property rights; security breaches and other security risks related to our technology, personal information, source code and other proprietary information, including failure to comply with regulations and other legal obligations relating to receiving, processing, storing and using personal information; payment- related risks, such as chargebacks for fraudulent credit card use; compliance with the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act or applicable money-laundering regulations; compliance with payment processing and payment transmission regulations; work stoppages and labor issues; difficulty in attracting a sufficient number of horses and trainers for full field horseraces; inability to negotiate agreements with industry constituents, including horsemen and other racetracks; personal injury litigation related to injuries occurring at our racetracks; the inability of our totalisator company, United Tote, to maintain its processes accurately, keep its technology current or maintain its significant customers; weather conditions affecting our ability to conduct live racing; increased competition in the horseracing business; changes in the regulatory environment of our racing operations; declining popularity in horseracing; seasonal fluctuations in our horseracing business due to geographic concentration of our operations; increased competition in our casino business; changes in regulatory environment of our casino business; the cost and possibility for delay, cost overruns and other uncertainties associated with the develop.m.ent and expansion of casinos; concentration and evolution of slot machine manufacturing and other technology conditions that could impose additional costs; impact of further legislation prohibiting tobacco smoking; geographic concentration of our casino business; changes in regulatory environment for our advanced deposit wagering, sports wagering, or online gaming businesses; increase in competition in the advanced deposit wagering, sports wagering, or online gaming businesses; inability to retain current customers or attract new customers to our advanced deposit wagering, sports wagering, or online gaming businesses; uncertainty and changes in the legal landscape relating to our advanced deposit wagering, sports wagering, or online gaming businesses; and failure to comply with laws requiring us to block access to certain individuals could result in penalties or impairment in our ability to offer advanced deposit wagering, sports wagering, or online gaming.

Back to all Articles