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Thursday, February 09, 2023

Graham Motion's G1 Stakes win, Brion and Houghton have winners

DEL MAR, Calif.--Graham Motion had a grade1 stakes win, a grade 2 stakes place and a maiden win, all on Saturday, Dec. 3.

Graham Motion Coady PhotographyGraham Motion (Photo by Coady Photography)Speaking Scout won the G1, $400,000, 1 1/8 mile Hollywood Derby Stakes for 3 year olds on the turf by 3/4 length on Dec. 3.

Owned by Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners and trained by Graham Motion, Speaking Scout was a bit slow at the start, running ninth in the 10 horse field until the far turn, then was two wide into the stretch and drove past the leaders for the win.

Speaking Scout previously won the Hawthorne Derby Stakes on Oct. 1 and was second in the G2 Twilight Derby at Santa Anita on Oct. 29.

This was Speaking Scout's first G1 win, and he now has four wins and four seconds from 14 starts and $500,668 in earnings,

"I'll probably keep him in California and run him at Santa Anita," said Motion.

Motion's G2 second place was at Aqueduct.

AMO Racing USA's Affirmative Lady, trained by Motion, ran second, beaten by just a neck by Julia Shining, trained by Todd Pletcher, in the $250,000, 1 1/8 mile Demoiselle Stakes for 2-year-old fillies.

Affirmative Lady had previously run third and fourth in maiden special weights at Keeneland.

"She's a filly I've always liked," said Motion. "I knew she'd like the mile and an eighth. Not all fillies do. That was a good opportunity for her. I might keep her here to break her maiden or maybe send her to California."


MOTION'S second win on Dec. 3 was with Sam-Son Farm's Mission of Joy in $27,000, 1 mile Maiden Special Weight for 2 year-old fillies at Tampa Bay Downs.

This was Mission of Joy's second start, and she stalked the leader, raced three wide around the turn, kicked clear and drew off to win by 4 lengths.

"She won impressively at Tampa," said Motion. "I'll keep her in Florida and, if she's good enough, maybe run her in the Florida Oaks at Tampa in March."

KERI BRION had a very impressive allowance winner at Penn National on Dec.2.

Blue Steak Racing's Anoint won the $31,600, 1 1/16 mile Allowance for fillies and mares 3 and up by 10 lengths after prompting the pace and taking command ain the stretch to draw away for the win.

Anoint was bred by Jonathan Sheppard, and raced by him in 2020 while Brion was his assistant trainer.

Blue Streak Racing got the mare this year, and this was Brion's second race with her, as Anoint had previously placed second in an allowance at at Presque Isle in October.

BERNIE HOUGHTON had an allowance winner at Penn National on Nov. 30.

Swan Point, owned by James Eshelman and trained by Houghton, won a $28,900 Allowance Optional Claiming race for fillies and mare 3 and up by  1 3/4 lengths.

Allowed to settle early , Swan Point was five wide in the backstretch, raced four wide on the turn and kicked clear for the win.

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