Jonathan Horowitz – Aurora, CO June 22, 2015

When Paddys Day took the lead in Sunday’s Jerry Partin COBRA Sprint Sponsored by Quarter Moon Ranch at Arapahoe Park, he also took the baton of Arabian racing in Colorado.  The 4-year-old rising star ridden by Kelsi Purcell won the all-star Arabian showdown that also included champion mare Ms Dixie and horse of the year So Big Is Better in an accomplished field of eight.

Paddys Day - The Jerry Partin Cobra Sprint (Grade III) - 06-21-15 - R06 - ARP - Action Finish

Paddys Day photo by Coady Photography

But the race on June 21, 2015 was not just about the future of Arabian racing.  The Grade 3 $21,100 stakes race over six furlongs honored longtime trainer Jerry Partin, who was inducted into the Arabian Jockey Club Racing Hall of Fame and Tent of Honor in a ceremony held during the COBRA awards dinner at Arapahoe Park on Sunday evening.  Paddys Day’s trainer, Scott Powell, credits Partin with launching his career when he was an assistant trainer for Partin.  Sueade, an 18-time stakes winner in the United States and Canada, was also inducted.

Paddys Day, who is owned by the Quarter Moon Ranch of Scott and Lori Powell, Jim Schleimer, and Nicki Forbes Robinson, won the COBRA Sprint by 3 1/2 lengths over Ms Dixie, a three-time Darley Award winner, ridden by Karlo Lopez.

“I wanted to see the showdown of those two,” Scott Powell said.  “They were head and head, and I knew [Ms Dixie] could hang with him.  I think [Paddys Day] has matured.  He’s gone from a baby to an athlete.”

The Powell-trained duo was 14 3/4 lengths clear of Rb Rich in third place for jockey Erik McNeil and trainer Elizabeth Brand.  Mark Powell’s So Big Is Better, the 2013 Darley Award winner as horse of the year, was fourth ridden by jockey Michael Iammarino.  The final time was 1:19.02.

Paddys Day will now represent Colorado and Arapahoe Park in the second leg of the Arabian Triple Jewel in the Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan Cup at Oak Tree at Pleasanton in Northern California on July 5.  The Triple Jewel is being held for the first time this year.  The series is part of the Sheikh Mansoor Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Global Arabian Horse Flat Racing Festival.

Jerry Partin, photo courtesy of Dale Partin.

Jerry Partin, photo courtesy of Dale Partin.

Jerry Partin trained Arabian racehorses and rode endurance races for more than 40 years, and fellow trainers shared stories about him during Sunday evening’s ceremony.

“He was very dedicated to the sport, to the Arabian,” said Dale Partin, who accepted the award on behalf of his father on Father’s Day.  “That’s why this is a great honor.”

Sueade’s owner, Roger Hoffort, flew to Colorado from Canada to receive the award for his star Arabian.

“A great horse—just liked to run around,” Hoffort said.  “He’d break with everybody, back off, come around, look them over, and beat them all.”

Sueade set the standard that the young Paddys Day now hopes to match.

Click here for a video of the race.