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Bringing Thoroughbred from California an Adventure
By Ryan Patterson
Last year, two Cincinnati friends traveled more than 2,000 miles to California to buy a racehorse called Citizen Jane.
It all started on May 30, 2014 when a $407,077 Pick 6 carryover at Santa Anita Park attracted the attention of many handicappers, including me. Along with my partner, Mikey Martin, I own a company created for claiming race horses.
We claimed our first horse on March 7, 2014. Since then, our horses have won four races at four different tracks: Belterra Park Gaming, Indiana Grand Race Course, Turfway Park and Tampa Bay Downs. Citizen Jane – the horse we brought home from Santa Anita Park – is responsible for two of those four wins.
Like I said, the mare piqued my interest as I handicapped the aforementioned Pick 6 set for the turf at Santa Anita Park in May 2014. I called Mikey and told him I thought we should bring the horse to our home track, Belterra Park. There she would outrun the local horses.
But on May 30, 2014, “C.J.” was still too expensive for us. She was running for $25,000 – which was the claim price. It was more than we were willing to spend, but we agreed she looked like a fish out of water and could lose the turf mile race she was about to run. We thought a bad performance could reduce her price.
We were right; she started last and stayed last in that race, crossing the finish line in dead last. One might rightly ask: Why would anyone want a horse that had just finished last? For one reason, the race, which was held at Santa Anita Park, was highly competitive. Losing that race did not make Citizen Jane a bad bet. Many of the horses that beat her in that race were of much higher caliber.