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Shining Copper Changes Tactic in Thrilling Fasig-Tipton Lure Win

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Making his first start against non-graded stakes company in over a year, Ken and Sarah Ramsey’s Shining Copper prevailed by a nose to win the fourth running of the $100,000 Fasig-Tipton Lure for 4-year-olds and up on Saturday at Saratoga Race Course.

Transferred to the care of trainer Chad Brown last July, Shining Copper had made his previous six starts against Grade 1 competition, most notably finishing second by a neck on February 6 in the Grade 1 Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap.

A 6-year-old primarily known for racing on the lead, Shining Copper was comfortably rated in second position behind Solemn Tribute, who led the field of seven through fractions of 24.30 seconds for the opening quarter mile with a half going in 47.82.

As the field turned for home, Solemn Tribute gave was as Shining Copper was gunned toward the lead. To his outside was Full Mast, with Ectot also in pursuit from the inside and a fast-charging Jay Gatsby coming on the outside. Battling through the final yards, Shining Copper emerged a nose in front of Jay Gatsby in the last jump to complete the 1 1/16 miles in 1:40.80 on a firm Mellon turf course.

“The No. 4 horse [Solemn Tribute] broke better than I did and I think that was key to winning the race,” said winning jockey JoseOrtiz. “In the first turn, I swung to the outside and got a good position. He was a bit keen on the backstretch but when I set him down, he gave me a good run.”

Returning $6.50 for a $2 win wager, Shining Copper picked up his first victory since February 2015, boosting his career earnings to $557,529.

“We talked about [potentially rating just off the lead] in the paddock,” said Brown.

“Jose told me ‘I know that horse Solemn Tribute a little bit, I’ve been watching him, and if he’s very aggressive I’d like to slip outside of him if you’ll let me.’ I said ‘if the opportunity comes up on the first turn, you can,’ and that’s the plan he wanted to use, and he executed it beautifully.

“It was a tight finish there – I know this horse, and when he gets hooked in deep stretch he’s tough. We used him as a pace-maker last year and we learned that about him. He gives way grudgingly if he ever gives way. If you’re ever going to have a horse on the inside fighting with good horses down to the wire, he’s the horse you want.”

Checking in fourth behind Full Mast was Ectot followed by Offering Plan, Solemn Tribute and Conquest Typhoon. Bigger Picture and March were scratched from the race.

Fasig-Tipton Lure Quotes

Chad Brown, winning trainer of Shining Copper (No. 1): “We talked about [potentially rating just off the lead] in the paddock – initially no [that wasn’t the plan], but Jose [Ortiz] told me, ‘I know that horse Solemn Tribute a little bit, I’ve been watching him, and if he’s very aggressive I’d like to slip outside of him if you’ll let me.’ I said ‘if the opportunity comes up on the first turn, you can,’ and that’s the plan he wanted to use, and he executed it beautifully.”

“It was a tight finish there. I know this horse, and when he gets hooked in deep stretch. he’s tough. We used him as a pace-maker last year and we learned that about him. He gives way grudgingly if he ever gives way. If you’re ever going to have a horse on the inside fighting with good horses down to the wire, he’s the horse you want.”

On winning seven stakes so far at the meet, and three races so far today: “I have to thank my staff. Today’s the perfect example. We’re running so many horses right now and trying to execute a plan with every single one of them to run their best race. You have to have a lot of talented people working for you, and I’m lucky I do.”

Jose Ortiz, winning jockey aboard Shining Copper (No. 1): “The No. 4 horse [Solemn Tribute] broke better than I did and I think that was key to winning the race. In the first turn, I swung to the outside and got a good position. He was a bit keen on the backstretch but when I set him down, he gave me a good run. I talked about it with Chad and I told him the No. 4 horse had speed too and we agreed we were going to play the break. He can sit [back], but he’s not a horse that can sit in a pack and explode in between horses. He can be on the lead or second in the clear and he’ll make a run.”

NYRA

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