April 15, 2021

No ‘Trouble’ for Arlington-Washington Lassie winner; Big Drink of Water stands tall in Futurity

Into Trouble captures the Arlington-Washington Lassie under jockey Chris Emigh at Arlington Park on September 9, 2018 (c) Arlington Park/Coady Photography

Saturday’s pair of $75,000 juvenile stakes at Arlington served up a study in contrasts, but both winners have upside going forward from the history-laden events. After pace-pressing Big Drink of Water readily justified even-money favoritism in the Arlington-Washington Futurity, Into Trouble made a mockery of her 14-1 odds in last-to-first fashion, and faster time, in the Lassie.

Trained by Ben Colebrook for Donamire Farm, Into Trouble was an overlay coming off a successful debut August 11 at Ellis Park. The $180,000 Keeneland September yearling brought a strong pedigree too, being by Into Mischief out of Grade 2-placed stakes winner Smooth Performer.

Into Trouble’s prospects appeared to plummet out of the gate, thanks to a tardy start that relegated her to the rear of the field. But a patient Chris Emigh gave her a well-judged ride, and she responded to overwhelm her foes in a virtually effortless performance.

Up front, Thunderous Gem carved out splits of :22.81, :46.52, and 1:12.00 on the Polytrack. The 6-5 favorite, Winning Envelope, stalked and attempted to challenge, only to be repelled.

Meanwhile, Into Trouble scythed through the field, angled into the clear in upper stretch, and set her sights on the longtime leader. Striding out as if in no more than an open gallop, she blew Thunderous Gem away by a 2 3/4-length margin. Into Trouble negotiated seven furlongs in 1:24.97, just about a tick faster than Big Drink of Water’s 1:25.20 in the Futurity.

Thunderous Gem was best of the rest by four lengths from Meadow Dance. Winning Envelope faded to fifth, beating only the three eased across the wire.

Two-for-two so far with $68,850 in the bank, Into Trouble was bred in Kentucky by the consortium of Betz/Burns/CHNNHK/Lamantia et al. Her dam, Smooth Performer, is a Benchmark half-sister to stakes scorer Imagine. Both are in turn daughters of multiple Grade 2 vixen Smooth Player.

Big Drink of Water wins the Arlington-Washington Futurity under jockey Jose Valdivia Jr. on September 8, 2018 (c) Arlington Park/Coady Photography

In the Futurity, Big Drink of Water was debuting for new owner Patricia’s Hope and trainer Larry Rivelli. Privately purchased following his front-running coup in the July 14 Victoria S. at Woodbine, the Soldat gelding had previously broken his maiden at Presque Isle. His synthetic proficiency was again on display here.

Under Jose Valdivia Jr., Big Drink of Water attended Hide the Demon through fractions of :23.11 and :46.47, accosted the pacesetter turning for home, and rolled by 1 1/4 lengths. Distant Shore, who was favored for a time before going off as the 2-1 second choice, rallied for second. Knicks Go, fifth in the Sanford (G3) at Saratoga, checked in a further 4 3/4 lengths back in third, and Hide the Demon retreated to fourth of seven.

Big Drink of Water, now three-for-three on synthetic, sports an overall mark of 4-3-1-0, $114,490. His only loss came first time out on the Gulfstream Park dirt for his original connections, Endeavor Bloodstock and trainer Teresa Connelly. Risked for a $50,000 tag in that May 4 unveiling, the bay rose in class as he ventured north.

Bred by Woodford Thoroughbreds in Florida, Big Drink of Water is out of Vindi Princess, a daughter of unbeaten champion Vindication and the tough Grade 2-winning Louisiana-bred Zuppardo Ardo.