You need to put this speedy colt named Bango on your radar!
Bango set a new track record at Turfway Park in the Animal Kingdom Stakes, running 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:14.99. It was his third career victory in seven starts.
This Gregory D. Foley trainee has only lost one race since breaking his maiden at Churchill Downs, that loss being a ninth place finish in the Lecomte Stakes (G3) at a distance of 1 1/16 miles. Bango shines at sprinting distances.
Tamaroak Stables bred Bango to have quality and speed. His sire is the consistent Congrats, a son of A.P. Indy that won the San Pasqual Stakes (G2) and hit the board in some of the country’s top races from a span of 2003 - 2006. Congrats has proved himself to be a good bargain stallion and according to WinStar Farm has sired four Grade 1 winners to date.
Bango’s dam Josaka raced just three times in her career, but hit the board in all of them. Josaka’s family traces back to the legendary A.P. Indy through her dam Fly The Colors. Giant’s Causeway and Josaka’s sire Smart Strike are among the other notable names in her pedigree.
Bango has found all of his success under the care of Greg D. Foley, who has trained the likes of Grade 3 winners Champali and Golden Marlin. Bango’s victory in the Animal Kingdom Stakes marked the third time Foley had saddled the winner of the race.
Prior to the Animal Kingdom Stakes, Bango was training well at Fair Grounds Race Course in New Orleans, LA. He made the trek back to Florence, KY for the race, in which he would become the bettor’s fifth choice in a field of eight horses. Bango broke well from gate nine with jockey Rafeal Bejarano in the irons. They quickly moved closer to the rail to track the leaders My Man Flinstone and Williston Way. The leaders set a blazing early pace, allowing Bango to easily bypass the tiring Williston Way and run down My Man Flinstone. Bango held on to the lead to deny the favored Merchants of Cool a victory.
Trainer Greg Foley was on his toes throughout the entire race. “It was a little nerve-wracking when he was that close to the early pace," Foley said. "They were flying up front but he won very impressively.
On the other hand, Jockey Rafael Bejarano was delighted with his trip. “I had a beautiful trip," Bejarano told reporters. "I got to stay outside with a perfect post. Gave the horse a chance to get good position, get him in the clear and he was much the best today. I’m really happy to run for Greg Foley. He always helps me, so I was really glad to win for him.”
According to Equibase, Bango has a record of 7: 3-3-1 and earnings of $181k. He could truly be a star in the making, or at least a consistent performer like his sire Smart Strike. Keep your eyes peeled for his name when you’re watching the races or keep up or receive notifications each time he workouts and enters a race by adding him to your Equibase Stable.
[Video: Watch Bango (#9) win the Animal Kingdom Stakes]
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