While for many, Christmas means shutting off and winding down for a few days, for the likes of Mike Stidham and his barn of graft-hardened employees, horses still need to be fed, cleaned, exercised and watered, as well as the finishing touches put to the laundry-list of runners scheduled over the holiday period.
Here’s the list of Stidham’s anticipated yuletide runners at Fair Grounds: Friday – Tough Business and Jockamo’s Song. Saturday – Profluent, Thestarvingartist and Holiday Touch. Sunday – Lawly’s Goal, Curlins Queen and La Bruna Forte. Monday – Premura, Forest Elf and If I ever.
Stidham singled out a couple of horses for special note, including Jockamo’s Song, who he said was quite green on his debut run a few weeks back.
“Jockamo’s Song looked like the winner at the 8th pole, only to wander around under pressure,” said Stidham. “We put blinkers on him this time, and we hope to get his maiden broken.”
Stidham had news of Lawly’s Goal, having his virgin run for the stable as well as his first since April of this year. Stidham said that this is very much a fact-finding mission for his new recruit: “we’ll see where he fits against some of our better horses,”
Also mentioned was Notte d’Oro, who last week won her third race this year for Stidham.
“We were pleased to get her back to a mile and a 16th,” said Stidham. “She finished the race well, goes better the further she goes and we have high hopes for her as we go forward. We hope to get some black-type for her eventually.”
“Most importantly, I just want to thank everybody who has supported the stable this year,” Stidham added. “We’ve surpassed our best ever total in purse earnings for the year, and it has just been a great year for everyone involved with the stable. But we could never achieve what we’ve achieved without the support of the owners who supply us with the good horses we have. We couldn’t do it without them.”