Miki’s Magic Ride turned in a magical performance Sunday, Feb. 20 at Cal Expo. With Nick Roland in the bike, the Indiana sired horse endured a tough half before holding on for the win.
Starting from post seven, Miki’s Magic Ride left the gate seeking the front, but so did several other horses and Roland had to take hold and float over to the rail. However, he never got to the rail and was hung on the outside, passing by the quarter in :30.0 in last place in the race. Ivar and Gerald Longo were also caught on the outside and made a big move to the lead before the half in :57.3, leading the way for Miki’s Magic Ride to also kick into another gear to pass him up and take control of the race. The tempo of the race kept up at a swift pace around the final turn through the three-quarters in 1:26.0 and Miki’s Magic Ride continued to lead the way.
In the stretch, challengers began to fan out across the track in an attempt to catch Miki’s Magic Ride but he held on gamely, winning by one length at the finish line in 1:55.3. He Grins Again and Luke Plano, the favorites of the field, moved up for second after leading the race in the first quarter. Outlaw Blue By You and James Kennedy finished third, rallying from the back of the pack.
Miki’s Magic Ride paid $5.80 for the win. He is trained by Leon Smith and owned by Ronald Rettig-Zucchi of California, who just purchased the stallion. Roll the Dice Stable in Delaware bred the son of Always a Virgin.
It was the first win of the year for Miki’s Magic Ride in his sixth start of 2022. Overall, he has nine career wins in 92 career starts with earnings over the $50,000 mark. His career best time was taken at Cal Expo as a four-year-old. Miki’s Magic Ride has never raced in Indiana. He started his career on the East Coast and eventually landed at Running Aces in Minnesota before becoming a California contender. The past two summers, he has shipped to Chicago and raced at Hawthorne.
Miki’s Magic Ride is a half-brother to Major Marcus, who has a mark of 1:50.3 and earnings over $322,000. He is also a full brother to Indiana sired pacers Foolish Virgin (1:54.1) and Thefoolalwaysrocks (153.0), who is now a broodmare and has her first foal heading to the track in 2022 named Sneak a Drink from the first crop of Indiana sire Let’s Drink on It.