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UPDATE: Anyone that comes to challenge Really Uptown will be disappointed- Hodge

- beats Slevin & Good Prospecting convincingly in feature meet of Boxing Day races at Ellis Thomas Downs
Really Uptown and jockey Alberto Soto Morales lead the competition during the feature race of the Boxing Day meet at Ellis Thomas Downs. Photo: VINO
Really Uptown of the L&B Stables powering to victory in the feature race today December 26, 2012 at Ellis Thomas Downs. Slevin came in second and Good Prospecting third. Photo: VINO
Really Uptown of the L&B Stables powering to victory in the feature race today December 26, 2012 at Ellis Thomas Downs. Slevin came in second and Good Prospecting third. Photo: VINO
Really Uptown, with jockey Alberto Soto Morales, dashed out in front from the get go and led throughout to finish well ahead of Slevin (centre). Good Prospecting was third by as much as two lengths behind. Photo: VINO
Really Uptown, with jockey Alberto Soto Morales, dashed out in front from the get go and led throughout to finish well ahead of Slevin (centre). Good Prospecting was third by as much as two lengths behind. Photo: VINO
Persons associated with the L&B Stables celebrated wildly after Really Uptown ran to victory at Ellis Thomas Downs. Photo: VINO
Persons associated with the L&B Stables celebrated wildly after Really Uptown ran to victory at Ellis Thomas Downs. Photo: VINO
Owner of Really Uptown Violet 'Letty' Hodge receives the winning trophy for the feature race from Minister for Education and Culture Hon. Myron V. Walwyn (left). Photo: VINO
Owner of Really Uptown Violet 'Letty' Hodge receives the winning trophy for the feature race from Minister for Education and Culture Hon. Myron V. Walwyn (left). Photo: VINO
The Really Uptown team in the winners circle. Photo: VINO
The Really Uptown team in the winners circle. Photo: VINO
Winning jockey in the feature race of the Boxing Day meet at Ellis Thomas Downs, Alberto Soto Morales. Photo: VINO
Winning jockey in the feature race of the Boxing Day meet at Ellis Thomas Downs, Alberto Soto Morales. Photo: VINO
A section of the crowd at the Boxing Day races. Photo: VINO
A section of the crowd at the Boxing Day races. Photo: VINO
The legendary Actspectation showing that he still has that determination to blaze the trail during his appearance at Ellis Thomas Downs on Boxing Day 2012. Photo: Reuben Stoby/VINO
The legendary Actspectation showing that he still has that determination to blaze the trail during his appearance at Ellis Thomas Downs on Boxing Day 2012. Photo: Reuben Stoby/VINO
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Slevin (left with James Bates) will be seeking revenge against Really Uptown (right with Letty Hodge) today, December 26, 2012 in the Boxing Day races at Ellis Thomas Downs. Photo:VINO/File
Slevin (left with James Bates) will be seeking revenge against Really Uptown (right with Letty Hodge) today, December 26, 2012 in the Boxing Day races at Ellis Thomas Downs. Photo:VINO/File
Good Prospecting (seen with owner, Lesmore Smith) is coming in as the underdog in today's feature race. Photo:VINO
Good Prospecting (seen with owner, Lesmore Smith) is coming in as the underdog in today's feature race. Photo:VINO
Good Evening Officer being put through her morning paces on December 23, 2012. Photo:VINO/File
Good Evening Officer being put through her morning paces on December 23, 2012. Photo:VINO/File
Formal King after his morning exercises on December 23, 2012. Photo:VINO/File
Formal King after his morning exercises on December 23, 2012. Photo:VINO/File
SEA COWS BAY, Tortola, VI - Having silenced the doubters that Really Uptown could not have registered a second straight win against St. Croix's champion horse Slevin, Violet "Letty" Hodge is looking for more challengers although she is already warning them that they will be disappointed at the end as her horse Really Uptown is simply the best at the moment.

Really Uptown, with jockey Alberto Soto Morales, led from the gate and finished well ahead of Slevin in the feature event at the Boxing Day races at Ellis Thomas Downs on December 26, 2012. 

The race was dubbed as a rematch of November 25, 2012 in St. Croix when Really Uptown beat Slevin to emerge the winner in record time in the Turkeyball Stakes at the Randall 'Doc' James race track. Really Uptown had finished in a new track record time of 1:29:00s flat ahead of Slevin and Burn the Harp.

"I know the kind of horse I have, I know he was ready and anybody that comes to challenge him will get very disappointed because I will cross the finish line first," commented a jubilant Hodge following the victory at Ellis Thomas Downs.

Hodge added that putting Really Uptown to run outside of his usual distance was no problem. "I spoke to the trainer and he told me no..its only a furlong more or whatever it is, he told me lets go for it and win."

She also said she didn't think Slevin would not want to do anything with Really Uptown fron now on. "I think he learnt his lesson."

One commentator noted that Bud White is sick and Slevin may not want to challenge again and asked who would Really Uptown compete against now? “Knowing me, I challenge anybody out there, I go for them and I just wish that some one is out there and if I think there is a challenge I am going to call them out and if they come out they come out but I am ready to roll” Hodge confidently responded.

And even though Really Uptown has proven himself as a champion, Mrs Hodge is not comparing him to the legendary Actspectation, who was paraded at Ellis Thomas Downs prior to the feature race. Actspectation was received with loud cheer and appeared to be ready to roll back the years as he gallopped with chest out like a true champion.

"Listen, Actspectation is a class by his self. I don’t think there will ever be a horse that will fit his shoes but Really Uptown he is good…” Hodge said.

Commenting on her winning jockey Alberto Soto Morales, Hodge said, "Soto, he is the man."

Morales, speaking through an interpreter, said he was well aware of the horse he was riding and that it was the best.  “They can’t beat him”.

Really Uptown was placed in gate one and the jockey was asked whether the plan to go out first? The jockey said the idea was to hit the front as soon as the gates were broken. "He knew what kind of horse he has, as soon as he break the gate, whoever come got to follow him. He is the one, he is the best horse, they can’t beat him," the interpreter said.

When asked if he was looking forward to riding Really Uptown again Mr Morales didn’t need his interpretor to say, “Yes, he is my horse!” 

See previous story posted on December 26, 2012

Really Uptown defeats Slevin again!

It was pure pandemonium as Really Uptown grabbed victory in the feature event of the Boxing Day races moments ago, December 26, 2012 at Ellis Thomas Downs in Sea Cows Bay, Tortola.

Really Uptown, with jockey Alberto Soto Morales, led from the gate and finished well ahead of Slevin. Good Prospecting, who trailed throughout, was third by as much as two lengths. 

The race was dubbed as a rematch of November 25, 2012 in St. Croix when Really Uptown beat Slevin to emerge the winner in record time in the Turkeyball Stakes at the Randall 'Doc' James race track.

Really Uptown had finished in a new track record time of 1:29:00s flat ahead of Slevin and Burn the Harp.

Many horse racing fans had some doubts, however, if Really Uptown could have pulled off consecutive victory against the "Big Demon" Slevin. There can be no doubt after the races today, however, as Really Uptown won convincingly in the race that went for a distance of one mile.

Handlers of Really Uptown could not contain their joy at the victory as they tumbled in the sand in ecstacy.

The L&B Stables, thanks to Really Uptown and jockey Alberto Soto Morales, won the $10, 000 purse. The race was sponsored by Minister for Education and Culture Hon. Myron V. Walwyn.

Earlier, Khun Dan and jockey Jose Riveira defeated Gaffalione by a length in the LIME sponsored One-Mile race for B and C horses.

The first race of the day was won by Queteparace Cholito with Man From Hill in second on debut. Walk the Tiger did not compete as scheduled.

Race two for C and D horses over 7 furlongs belonged to dubutant horse Torento. Second was Good Boy Daddy while Ease My Mind of the Pleasant Valley Stable took third and Formal King of St Thomas brought up the rear.

Good Evening Officer was an easy winner over 7 furlongs for Open Fillies and Mares. Second was Blake's Lucky Penny of Top Priority Stables, third was Glorious Memory of L&B Stables while Orithyia of St. Thomas trotted in last.

See previous story posted December 26, 2012:

Downs on fire today Dec. 26 as Slevin & Really Uptown clash! 

Slevin returns to Ellis Thomas Downs in an effort to avenge loss to Really Uptown; fans keeping eyes on Good Prospecting 

SEA COWS BAY, Tortola, VI – All roads lead to Ellis Thomas Downs in Sea Cows Bay today, December 26, 2012 for the anxiously awaited Boxing Day races which will see Slevin out of St. Croix, US Virgin Islands and Really Uptown out of Tortola in a highly anticipated rematch. Also in that feature race would be literal dark horse, Good Prospecting, also out of Tortola looming ominously in the wings.

The owner of Slevin, Mr James Bates, revealed that he was keen on righting the wrong that took place with his horse’s loss to Really Uptown at races held earlier this month in the US Virgin Islands by winning the feature Boxing Day one miler today.

Virgin Islands News Online caught up with Mr Bates on December 22, 2012 at Ellis Thomas Downs and he revealed, “sometimes when you see why you lost [a race], all you are usually looking for is a rematch… right away we wanted a rematch, because we didn’t take that loss too happily… he beat us but we saw a couple of things that happened… right now we’re looking for revenge.”

Despite the eagerness for a rematch however, his team was generally relaxed about their approach to race day. “We’re very relaxed,” he said as he noted there were just a few more days to go. “…we’re just ready to burst that gate.”

Owner of Really Uptown, Mrs Violet ‘Letty’ Hodge, revealed that her camp was excited in anticipation of the rematch with Slevin. “Everybody is anxious… we can’t wait for Wednesday to come around.” She added, “… it should be some good exciting races and I hope that everybody comes.”

Meanwhile, the current President of the Virgin Islands Horse Owners’ Association and owner of Top Priority Stables, Mr Lesmore Smith, is quietly confident ahead of today’s Boxing Day races at Ellis Thomas Downs.

The owner of Good Prospecting, a key participant in the feature race today, was quite calm and assured even though he admitted he was going into the race as “the underdog”.

“I ran the Triple Crown… I came back and won the Governor’s Cup when they said I shouldn't even be there,” he revealed.

Race day strategy

Speaking about the most recent race, Bates observed that Slevin came down from his regular distance to face Really Uptown, “he never lost a seven and a half furlong [race] before… he actually had the track record… they had to run record time to beat him… that’s why we know that we have a good horse here and he’s still firing on all cylinders…”

Bates had decided that the strategy this time around would be different coming into this race. “We know Really Uptown likes to go to the front, but Slevin can go to the front too… we will see what happens.”

According to Mrs Hodge, also co-owner of L&B Stables, Really Uptown is in excellent condition, “the thing about my horses, if they’re not 100%, they don’t run, I’m not going in there… I like to win, I don’t like to go with a horse that is 50% or 75%... no, I prefer that he stays home.” There will always be other races, she added, while explaining that there was no reason to “jump at every race”.

Mr Smith opted to have his horse’s actions do the talking on race day but assured that Good Prospecting was in good spirits and there were no issues with the horse at the moment.

There would be no difference in preparations this time around the owner related. “I keep the same mentality every day for horse racing,” he said while explaining that ultimately, in horse racing, horses were meant to beat each other.

He added that he was hoping for the best and was expecting a good race come Boxing Day. “At the end of the day,” said Mr Smith, “I’m just being optimistic about [everything]… going out there, I’m hoping for the best for all of us, I hope that the horses are in good health and good condition… may the best man win.”

“I’m just staying focused… I keep an open mind, my team and I are working, doing our best to be there and be ready for the races, we are trying our best to be,” Smith declared.

Good Prospecting a “sleeper”

Offering his thoughts on one of the other big factors in the race, Good Prospecting, Bates noted that he was a “sleeper”. He felt strongly that once the horse ran the same kind of race he had run in most recently, then Slevin’s team didn’t have much to worry about. “He shows up when he’s ready,” he said of Good Prospecting.

“We gotta be very careful with him because we got two speedsters in the race and sometimes the ‘closer’ gets you when you’re too weary coming home…. He’s a good horse, he won a couple of Governor’s cups… he shows up big on the big days.”

This will be the first time that each of the three horses are together in a one miler and Bates' second trip to the Territory where he would be racing horses of his own. “It’s just about counting the days and the hours to get that rematch and hope that we come out victorious in this one,” he said.

Three horses remain in the feature race for today, Slevin, Really Uptown and Good Prospecting, after three others have either been scratched or withdrawn for other reasons.

See race card below:

23 Responses to “UPDATE: Anyone that comes to challenge Really Uptown will be disappointed- Hodge”

  • qc (26/12/2012, 12:34) Like (0) Dislike (7) Reply
    race card not to impressive only the last race me going for!
  • rat tail (26/12/2012, 12:37) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    lawdy ah mussy I got to get something new to wear as them people does be sparp
  • Fan (26/12/2012, 12:45) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    slevin might pull it off but my money is on Up town really
  • ---------- (26/12/2012, 14:46) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    look people mehson
  • review (26/12/2012, 17:41) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    The horse race is been heard internationally and if you leave it to the Tony Bone something no one no one would come he is to negative and all he is doing is calling the BVI down. Is gambling legal in the BVI?
    • ccc (26/12/2012, 19:05) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      well there are some people you just have to leave along...oh big ups L & B stable you did it again!
    • I agree (26/12/2012, 19:40) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      I said the same thing when i listened to the race today. Roy pico Pickering did a better job with the races at least he big up the man for Slevin all tony was doing was flaunting the win in the man face i was disappointed in tony coverage of the race
  • So Happy (26/12/2012, 18:18) Like (7) Dislike (0) Reply
    I'm so happy for Letty and Bob with this big win.... Cheers to L&B Stables... Merry Christmas
  • tom cat (26/12/2012, 18:58) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    no surprise here deman really up all the way wire to wire
  • yes (26/12/2012, 19:14) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
    Really Uptown is the king now, it's official no more doubts . Look out Tripple Crown.
  • Tommy Lee (26/12/2012, 20:27) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    Uptown Ah Run Inna Act FootSteps
  • DON Q (26/12/2012, 20:50) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    WOW! WOW! U never cease to amaze me VINO..10 mins after the feature race I got an alert from you!!!! Keep up the good work you are !! That was fast... Simply the best! better than all the rest!!! I wonder how you do it!!
  • Sandy (26/12/2012, 23:23) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    what happen every body stop talking about para muntrel?
  • tola (26/12/2012, 23:25) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    We love L&B !!
  • Liat 521 (27/12/2012, 06:54) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    UP town really is the new game in town.
  • RNC (27/12/2012, 13:20) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Yea letty tell them you are the one to beat!
  • For really (28/12/2012, 04:54) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Thxs Letty and Bob and the whole of the L&B Camp BIG BIG WIN again.Thxs to u Mr.Bates for coming over and giving tola big day. Now tell why Lesmore was in this race.I think he should been in the first race BIG JOKER.Lol Now kill all the old talk, To all horses owner go and shop the mall is open.


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