NUMBER ONE DUDE CONTINUES HIS DOMINANCE AT REMINGTON PARK, WINNING $70,000 JIM THORPE STAKES
Number One Dude solidified his dominance as arguably the top Oklahoma-bred in training as he won the $70,000 Jim Thorpe Stakes by open daylight on Friday night.
Owner-breeder Terry Westemeir of Broken Arrow, Okla., said his only concern was the long layoff for his 3-year-old gelded son of American Lion, out of the Macho Uno mare Ebony Uno. Number One Dude had been off since Oct. 15 when he ran second in the $175,000 Oklahoma Classics Cup to multiple winner at Remington this meet, Absaroka.
Number One Dude has now won four Oklahoma-bred stakes races at Remington Park and one at Will Rogers Downs in Claremore, Okla. His overall record improved to 10 starts, six victories and two seconds for $276,843. He earned $42,000 from this purse.
He was purchased by Westemeir when the owner bought Number One Dude’s dam (mom) Ebony Uno and she was in foal with him. Westemeir was trying to figure out how to break the news to his wife Leslie that he had bought not only one horse, but another one yet to come.
“She didn’t want me to buy one, let alone two,” Westemeir said. “She’s good now.”
Regardless of what the undisclosed purchase price was, it couldn’t have been close to what he has earned on the track. Number One Dude broke his maiden at Remington Park as a 2-year-old on Sept. 18, 2020. He won that race by 7-1/2 lengths. He followed that up with victories in the $100,000 Oklahoma Classics Juvenile and the $75,000 Don McNeill Stakes on Oct. 16 and Nov. 13, respectively, last year. The margins of victory in those two were one length and six lengths.
An abscess developed and was found after he was soundly defeated in the $200,000 Springboard Mile to finish the 2020 meet, running eighth, and he was given time off before his next start at Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie, Texas. The layoff showed as he could do no better than fifth, beaten 13 lengths in open allowance 3-year-olds company there on May 9 this spring.
After winning the $55,000 Will Rogers Stakes on May 25 by 5-1/4 lengths, he had a quick trip to Iowa and Prairie Meadows before returning to his home base at Remington Park. Once he got back to Oklahoma City, he became a monster again.
He won the $50,000 Oklahoma Stallion Stakes by seven lengths on Sept. 10 here and then was the runner-up to Absaroka prior to this race. Number One Dude, a beautiful dark bay, almost black, then had the short vacation.
“I was concerned about the lack of a race since the Classics Cup,” Westemeir said. “I have to give credit to (trainer) Kari (Craddock) and her crew, Jeremy Collier and exercise rider Keith Bilbey, (jockey) Leandro (Goncalves) and everyone else for getting him ready off of works.”
Number One Dude sat just off the shoulder of front-runner Salt Creek Kid all down the backstretch. When the pace-setter began to fade to last, the Craddock charge took over and drew away by seven lengths as the heavy wagering favorite at 2-5 odds.
Tap the Dot was second at 3-1 and You’reobadboy finished third, another half length behind at 27-1.
Number One Dude showed his tactical speed behind early fractions of :24.76 for the first quarter-mile, :49.69 for the half-mile, 1:14.84 for three-quarters of a mile and 1:27.51 for seven furlongs, finishing the mile in 1:40.25 over the fast track. He paid $2.80 to win, $2.10 to place and $2.10 to show.
The Jim Thorpe Stakes is named after the native Oklahoman and Olympic gold-medalist who was considered the greatest athlete of the 20th century.
Tracked by more than 167,000 fans on Facebook and 10,500 Twitter followers, Remington Park has provided more than $281 Million to the State of Oklahoma general education fund since the opening of the casino in 2005. Remington Park is located at the junction of Interstates 35 & 44, in the heart of the Oklahoma City Adventure District. Simulcast horse racing is featured daily, and the casino is always open! Visit remingtonpark.com for more information.