Jockey Adam Beschizza is being reunited with Toby’s Heart for the first time in 14 races, when the now 4-year-old filly won her debut by 6 1/4 lengths. Trained by Brian Lynch, Tobys Heart is the 2-1 favorite in a field of 10 for the $100,000 Laguna Distaff Turf Sprint. She is seeking her fifth stakes, having earlier won Churchill Downs’ Unbridled Sidney on May 5. She also won the 2021 Music City Stakes at Kentucky Downs, where Lynch is hoping to return next month.
“There’s been plenty of water under the bridge since I last sat on her a couple of years ago,” Beschizza said. “She was a real fast, sharp 2-year-old. She had her first win at Churchill and won very impressively. She’s continued to do so. She’s a very solid, hearty mare. They did experiment with her back and forth with distances. She’s bred to go a bit farther. But she’s always been a head-strong filly and she just needs races to sort of play into her favor and get her to drop her head and she usually puts her best foot forward. What makes her shine is her toughness and her grit to win. She’s 4 now and showing no signs of stopping.”
Toby’s Heart has a career record of 14: 5-1-2 and her earnings of $649,995 top the field. She finished eighth in her last start, the Caress (G3) at Saratoga, but Lynch is pretty much tossing that non-performance.
Beschizza picked up the mount on Call Me Midnight, a 3-year-old taking on older horses in the $100,000 Twin Spires Turf Sprint. Call Me Midnight won the 1 1/16-mile Lecomte (G3), a Kentucky Derby prep in New Orleans, but has been refashioned into a sprinter. Trainer Keith Desormeaux hoped to run him for the first time on the grass in the Dade Park Dash, but the race was taken off the turf. He lost by a head to All in Sync, who also runs back in the Twin Spires Turf Sprint.
“Very narrow defeat here, beaten by one of Mr. (Steve) Asmussen’s nice horses,” Beschizza said. “Look, I’m sure in his mind the horse probably thought he won, it was so close. Very privileged and excited to be riding him.”
Beschizza also rides Cupid’s Claws, making his first start for trainer Mark Casse in the $100,000 Henderson Turf Mile, with the stakes receiving a name change to honor Ellis Park’s host community.
Lynch has a horse entered in all four stakes, including favored Thanks Mr. Eidson in the Twin Spiers Turf Sprint, the consistent Take Charge Ro in the Centennial Distaff Turf Mile and Churchill Downs’ Opening Verse winner Gray’s Fable in the Henderson Turf Mile.
“Thank you Mr. Eidson, I thought he looked very good winning the stakes at Indiana the other day,” Lynch said of the last-out winner of the William Garrett Stakes. “That was a good stepping stone towards these stakes. Take Charge Ro ran a good fourth over there with a wide trip. Gray’s Fable has been a little disappointing after taking him over from Roger Attfield, but we’re hoping we’ve got him back on track. And Toby’s Heart just didn’t seem to fire at Saratoga and didn’t really get involved in the race. But she’s come out of it, so well I think I’m going to give her a shot.”