SHAKOPEE, MN – Rake Farms made it a sweep of the major weekend stakes opening weekend at Canterbury Park with Sky and Sea taking the $60,000, six furlong, Lady Slipper Stakes a day after stablemate Bourbon County controlled the 10,000 Lakes Stakes.
Sky and Sea had a difficult 2015. While hitting the board consistently she was unable to duplicate the effort that made her Canterbury Horse of the Year in 2014. However a winter of maturing and experimentation resulted in a very gritty stakes win for the 5-year old mare.
“It was all him,” said owner Scott Rake as Sky and Sea made her way to the winners’ circle, nodding toward trainer Bernell Rhone. “His work with her made this happen.”
Throughout her 2015 campaign a headstrong Sky and Sea would pull her riders rather than relax and rate. A change of a bit, mental maturity and a solid prep race at Tampa Bay Downs helped her turn the tables on Rockin the Bleu’s who beat her rival convincingly in the Minnesota Distaff Sprint on Festival Day 2015.
“We took her to Florida to get her ready and we couldn’t find a race for her,” said Rhone. “So we ended up running her against the boys and she did well.
Rockin the Bleu’s and Sky and Sea hooked up almost immediately and as the field bent into the turn the race was going to come down to which horse could outlast the other. That prep race may have made all the difference as Sky and Sea ($3.20) was able to edge away in deep stretch to win by 3/4 of a length over a very game Rockin the Bleu’s with Thunder and Honey 5 1/2 lengths back in third. The Latent Heat mare covered the six furlongs 1:10.79.