Indy Point made amends for disappointing in the Arlington Million (G1) in August by winning the John Henry Turf Championship (G2) at Santa Anita on Sept. 29.
Under Gary Stevens, Indy Point rolled to an authoritative 1 ¼-length score as the 2-1 favorite. The win provided Stevens with his third graded stakes score of the weekend.
Trained by Richard Mandella, 4-year-old Indy Point bested 11 rivals and got the distance of a mile and a quarter in a rapid 1:57.47.
“I can’t say that we had a plan (today)” said Stevens, who also collected his fourth overall stakes win of the weekend. “He’s a strong-willed horse and we kinda out-thought ourselves in the Arlington Million. Today, I just threw his head away leaving there and let him run free with a long rein.
“My son, (trainer, T.C.) won a race last night at Churchill and that was really special. My mom had a stroke last Monday though, and that’s really put everything in perspective. I’ve just been trying to have fun, going fishing and just keeping everything in perspective. I didn’t think in my wildest dreams though, that I’d have the kind of horses I’ve had this weekend.
“Mucho Macho Man, Beholder, Marketing Mix, She’s a Tiger, this horse, it’s unbelievable.”
Trainer Richard Mandella said: “He had a lot of horse. No sense being tricky. Just get the job done, and Gary did a great job. It’s on to the Breeders’ Cup Turf.”
Owned by Felipe Lovisi’s Gus-May-Fer Stable, Indy Point was a multiple Group 1 winner in Argentina and was sensational in his U.S. debut at Del Mar July 24, which prompted the trip to Arlington Park in Chicago.
“After what happened in Chicago, it’s great to be back on track,” said Lovisi’s Racing Manager John Fulton, a former Southern California-based trainer who won the 1977 Hollywood Derby with Steve’s Friend. “The horse has trained fantastic since then, and when I got here I thought ‘This horse could not be better.’ It’s like they say in Argentina, ‘Diez puntos!’ or ‘10 points,’ meaning you can’t get any better.”
Indy Point paid $6.00, $4.40 and $2.80. With the winner’s share of $90,000, he hiked his earning to $659,061. His overall record stands at 15-7-4-3.