Speechify wins the Kenny Noe
MIAMI – What he lacked in experience,
Speechify made up for in talent and
perseverance, becoming a stakes winner for
the first time with a convincing 3 3/4-length
decision over Grande Shores in Sunday’s
$90,000 Kenny Noe Jr. Stakes at Gulfstream Park West.
With only six previous starts under his belt,
and only one since Jan. 23, Speechify gave
away a lot of seasoning to his seven rivals in
the six- furlong Kenny Noe. But with jockey
Paco Lopez taking advantage of the speedfavoring
racetrack, Speechify was able to stalk the early pace of Mongolian Saturday,
readily gained the lead on the final turn, and
then asserted his dominance through the stretch.
Grande Shores, who trailed after the opening quarter-mile, did well to rally between horses near the
inside to finish second against the grain of a fast main track that favored speed throughout the card.
Mongolian Saturday held on to finish third.
Risk Factor, the 2-1 favorite, surprisingly dropped off the early pace when steadied in traffic after
the opening furlong. He made a mild run at the winner entering the stretch but could not sustain
his bid, ultimately fading to finish fourth, six lengths behind Speechify.
The victory was the fourth in just seven career starts for Speechify, a son of Harlan’s Holiday who is
owned by Team Valor International. Speechify has to be delicately handled by trainer Ralph Nicks
due to a restriction in his esophagus which limits his diet on a daily basis.
Speechify completed the distance in 1:10.52 and paid $8.80.
“He’s awesome,” said Nicks. “It’s a shame he has the restriction in his throat because he could be