Thursday, September 11, 2008


Contessa claims Dutrow favorite Mr. Umphrey

Trainer Richard Dutrow Jr. lost one of his favorite horses to the claim box on Wednesday when Gary Contessa took stakes winner Mr. Umphrey for $75,000 out of a six-furlong allowance/optional claiming race at Monmouth Park. The Jules gelding finished fourth as the even-money favorite to Lemons of Love. Contessa claimed the six-year-old Florida-bred on behalf of Winning Move Stable. Mr. Umphrey won the Longfellow Stakes in June at Monmouth after finishing second to Gottcha Gold in the Skip Away Handicap (G3) at Gulfstream Park for owner Four Roses Thoroughbreds. Dutrow singled out Mr. Umphrey as a barn favorite on May 16 in a press conference prior to Big Brown’s Preakness Stakes (G1) victory. “He is like my brother,” Dutrow said. Dutrow and Contessa exchanged sharp words through the media in June after Big Brown was pulled up in the Belmont Stakes (G1). They are stabled near each other at Aqueduct.—Jeff Lowe


Kara said...

Very interesting! I wouldn't have guessed that Mr. Umphrey was a favorite of Dutrow's after he was using him as a rabbit all those races.

Side note: Lanie just walked in, saw the picture of Mr. Umphrey and said, "I like that pretty horse. He's like Spirit."

Nora said...

Me neither... he was probably just trying to smooth it out with the owners after they figured out that thier horse was nice. I think its funny that Contessa is the one who claimed him after the war of words he had with Dutrow. I guess payback really is a bitch!

Tell Lanie I like him too!