Jason and Molly Davis and their 8-year-old daughter Hannah of Columbus, Ohio scheduled a spring-break vacation to Fort Myers, about two-and-a-half hours south of Tampa Bay Downs. But when they learned their 3-year-old gelding Nice Not Nice was competing today, they changed their travel plans and flew into Tampa.
They'll have plenty to talk about on their drive south.
The son of Twirling Candy-Kiss Is a Kiss, by Broken Vow, staged a whirlwind rally through the stretch to win today's co-feature eighth race on the turf by a head from Speed Game. Mr French finished third.
“This is our first racehorse, and it's awfully exciting watching him prosper,” said Jason Davis, a brewing-company executive who campaigns Nice Not Nice under the family's Keene Ridge Farm banner.
“We're thrilled to be here to see it,” said Molly Davis, an intervention specialist and teacher.
Nice Not Nice paid $5 to win as the slight wagering favorite. He was ridden by Jesus Castanon and is trained by William “Buff” Bradley. Nice Not Nice had been off since Dec. 16 after incurring a mild ankle sprain in training.
Today's eighth race was his second turf start, and he is now 3-for-8 overall with possible stakes potential. His winning time for the mile was 1:36.82, following a second-place finish in the Dec. 16 grass contest.
“The entire time we've had him, he's been a really hard-trying horse,” said Chelsey Moysey, Bradley's assistant. “He keeps improving with every start, he has shown he is pretty versatile and he seems to be taking a pretty good liking to the turf, so hopefully our spring and summer plans look high for him.
“I'd like to see how many more feet he traveled than the rest of the field,” Moysey added. “He had the longest trip on both turns, so he was definitely the best horse today. Jesus rode him perfectly. The horses on the front end slowed down a bit, and he was able to circle right through them and keep him out of traffic. A perfect ride – Jesus really does his homework.”
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