November 29, 2021

Raging Bull overtakes River Boyne in Hollywood Derby

Raging Bull and jockey Joel Rosario overtake River Boyne under Flavien Prat to win the Hollywood Derby (G1) on December 1, 2018, at Del Mar © BENOIT PHOTO

Not quite three hours after Patternrecognition wired the Cigar Mile (G1), trainer Chad Brown notched a cross-country Grade 1 double with Raging Bull in Saturday’s $302,760 Hollywood Derby (G1) at Del Mar. The 9-5 favorite produced a terrific turn of foot to collar the 5-2 River Boyne in a formful conclusion to the turf feature.

The market was right to keep faith with Raging Bull after an uncharacteristic fifth last out in the Hill Prince (G2). That was an outlier for the Peter M. Brant colorbearer, who’d previously captured the National Museum of Racing Hall of Fame (G2) and Saranac (G3) at Saratoga.

Regular rider Joel Rosario settled Raging Bull near the back of the pack as a pace scramble unfolded up front. Hill Prince winner Have At It used his rail draw to grab the advantage through an opening quarter in :23.70, tracked by Brown’s other runner, Instilled Regard. After the half in :48.20, the field began to compress, and Carrick launched an early bid to strike the front through six furlongs in 1:12.48. Have At It kept vying, and the two cornered for home together.

But River Boyne, now in full flight, blew by them both and cleared away in what could have been the decisive move in most years. Except this was not most years.

With Rosario unleashing him on the far turn, Raging Bull was in rampaging mood down the stretch. River Boyne tried to run with the bull, but could not fend him off. Raging Bull’s final furlong in :11.37, according to Trakus, propelled him to a half-length decision in a time of 1:48.34 for 1 1/8 miles on the firm turf.

The top two were dominant, pulling 2 3/4 lengths ahead of the rest. Instilled Regard stayed on determinedly to regain third by a head from Prince Earl, and thereby gave Brown a one-three result. Carrick wound up fifth, while Have At It tired to 12th, trailed only by the tailed-off Pubilius Syrus.

Raging Bull increased his earnings to $584,500 from a 7-5-1-0 line. The French-bred began his career with a sharp maiden win at Keeneland, and promptly followed up in a first-level allowance at Belmont Park. He could not catch the front-running Up the Ante in his stakes debut in the July 4 Manila S. over the same course and one-mile trip, but appreciated stretching out to two turns at the Spa. A photo-finish winner of the Hall of Fame, Raging Bull had the pleasure of mowing down Up the Ante in their Saranac rematch. He likewise gained revenge on Have At It here, although he’d beaten him emphatically before the Hill Prince blip.

By Dark Angel and out of the French stakes-placed Mr. Greeley mare Rosa Bonheur, Raging Bull was sold for €90,000 as a Goffs Orby yearling. His second dam, Rolly Polly, was Italy’s highweight juvenile filly of 2000, and the Prix Robert Papin (G2) heroine, before becoming a multiple Grade 3-winning turf sprinter in Southern California.