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Asmussen trainees Long Range Toddy and Bankit run one-two in Springboard Mile

Trainer Steve Asmussen provided the exacta in Sunday evening’s $400,000 Springboard Mile at Remington Park when Long Range Toddy held off Bankit by a head on the wire.

The eight-furlong contest is the final race on the domestic calendar of Road to the Kentucky Derby prep races. The year-ending points contest takes place in Japan on December 19.

The Springboard Mile offered up 10-4-2-1 points to the respective top four finishers, and Asmussen pupils ended up taking all but the third-place points thanks to Tone Broke finishing fourth.

Long Range Toddy tracked in third two wide on the backstretch as Dobbins G set the pace while pressed by Marquee Prince. The Take Charge Indy pupil rallied rounding the turn and then angled out four wide in upper stretch to take command.

Meanwhile, stablemate Bankit ran in last until hitting the lane. Still sixth in midstretch, Bankit hit overdrive to close the distance between himself and Long Range Toddy, but the wire came too quick and he was forced to settle for second.

Long Range Toddy ran a mile in 1:39.75 at 18-1 and returned $39.20 for the win. The Willis Horton Racing LLC homebred earned 10 points toward the 2019 Kentucky Derby and debuted on the Leaderboard in fourth. Bankit, who is co-owned by Willis Horton Racing with Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC, took home four points for his close second and made his first appearance on the Derby Leaderboard in the 13th spot.

Dunph took third in the Springboard Mile for trainer Mike Maker and owner Three Diamonds Farm, good for two points and 20th on the Derby Leaderboard. L and N Racing LLC’s Tone Broke, who is also trained by Asmussen, filled out the superfecta and was awarded one point.

Completing the order of finish were Marquee Prince, 6-5 favorite Epic Dreamer, D Toz, Kaziranga, Dobbins G, Tobacco Road and Six Shooter.

Long Range Toddy has raced exclusively at Remington Park in four career starts, finishing fourth in his debut on August 31. The juvenile broke through next out on September 28 with a 5 34-length score, and last out captured the November 2 Clever Trevor Stakes by a length.

Foaled in Kentucky by the Unbridled’s Song mare Pleasant Song, Long Range Toddy now boasts a 4-3-0-0 record and $321,125 in lifetime earnings.

Remington Springboard Mile History 

The Springboard Mile was first run in 2009 and is held annually in December at Remington Park in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The race is for two-year-olds and contested over one mile with a purse of $400,000. In 2017, the race was included for the first time as a Road to the Kentucky Derby prep, awarding 10-4-2-1 qualifying Kentucky Derby points to the respective top 4 finishers.

Greyvitos won the 2017 Springboard in a record time of 1:37.14 with Victor Espinoza aboard. The gray son of Malibu Moon was a sentimental winner after surviving the fires that had spread through Southern California earlier in the month. Greyvitos did not run in any of the 2018 Triple Crown races.

Some Springboard Mile runners and winners have gone onto racing success, including Caleb’s Posse, who finished seventh in the 2010 Springboard Mile but would go on to become one of the most accomplished runners of the race and earn $1.4 million. In 2011 and 2012, he raced in 12 graded stakes with a record of 4-4-1. He won the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile in 2011 and finished his career with back-to-back runner-up finishes in the Carter Handicap and Metropolitan Handicap, both Grade 1 races.

Another horse with great success on the racetrack was 2012 Springboard runner-up Will Take Charge. He’s the highest earner of the race, having won $3.9 million with seven wins and six runner-up finishes from 21 career starts. He won the Smarty Jones a month after the Springboard Mile and captured the Rebel Stakes before competing in all three Triple Crown races but failing to hit the board. However, Will Take Charge did just that in winning the Travers Stakes by a nose and capturing the Pennsylvania Derby. He then just missed winning the Breeders’ Cup Classic in 2012, getting nosed-out at the wire by Mucho Macho Man. He won his next race in the Clark Handicap at Churchill Downs and also won the Oaklawn Handicap in 2014.  

The 2011 Springboard winner was Ted’s Folly, an Oklahoma-bred who recorded 65 career races during his time on track.

The 2013 edition of the Springboard Mile featured the most successful group of horses in terms of visits to the winners circle – the 16-combined post-Springboard wins by the top three finishers is the most from any field. Louies Flower won the 2013 Springboard followed by Noble Cornerstone and Smack Smack. None of them won a Grade 2 race or higher, but they were successful in the allowance and claiming ranks.

Discreetness won the 2015 Springboard, but it was runner-up Suddenbreakingnews who went onto more success. He won the the Southwest, finished second in the Arkansas Derby and ran in both the Kentucky Derby (fifth) and Belmont Stakes (ninth).

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