Roy H in 2018 became the first male horse to earn back-to-back sprint champion titles since Housebuster (1989-90), thus joining an illustrious group of two-time sprint champions that also includes Dr. Fager, Ta Wee, Decathlon, and Groupie Doll.
In five stakes appearances, the Peter Miller trainee won three times and placed in the other two. Kicking off his season with a facile score in the Palos Verdes (G2) at Santa Anita in February, Roy H next shipped to Dubai for the Golden Shaheen (G1) in late March, where he was beaten three-quarters of a length into third by previous Golden Shaheen winner Mind Your Biscuits, who went on to concentrate on longer races during the course of the season.
Roy H’s quest to repeat in the TwinSpires Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1) began in the Bing Crosby (G1) at Del Mar in July, but he proved no match for the erratic Ransom the Moon, who scored by 2 1/4 lengths. Second that day, Roy H returned the favor decisively in the Santa Anita Sprint Championship (G1) in early October, winning by 2 3/4 lengths with Ransom the Moon a more distant third.
Facing a smart field that included 8-5 favorite Imperial Hint and Kentucky-based stalwarts Whitmore, Limousine Liberal, and Promises Fulfilled, Roy H proved far too good for them all in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint when strolling to a 3 1/4-length victory in his first appearance at Churchill Downs. Roy H is only the second horse ever to win the Sprint twice, joining Midnight Lute (2007-08).
Owned by Rockingham Ranch and David Bernson, Roy H was bred in Kentucky by Ramona Bass. The now seven-year-old gelding by More Than Ready and out of Elusive Diva, a multiple Grade 3-winning daughter of Elusive Quality, in 2019 will seek to become the first horse in history to earn three champion sprinter titles. His quest got off to an outstanding start as he successfully defended his Palos Verdes title by four lengths on January 19.
A return trip to Dubai for the Golden Shaheen is next on Roy H’s agenda. He’ll enter that six-furlong dash with a career mark of 23-10-5-2, $3,139,765.
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