Mission Impazible’s Summer Surge of 13 Winners in 7 Weeks Highlighted by New Spa SW Jolting Joe
By Rab Hagin
Starting just prior to the Summer Solstice and concluding with an almost two-length win by JOLTING JOE in Saratoga’s New York Stallion Cab Calloway Stakes on August 6, runners by MISSION IMPAZIBLE won 13 races at eight different tracks, confirming that their sire’s crops continue to get better. Jolting Joe, a 3-year-old Kentucky homebred owned by Jim Shircliff’s Skychai Racing LLC and bred by the Hot Pink Stable of Shircliff’s daughters Susie and Cathy, has never finished worse than second in five starts, including stakes at Gulfstream Park and Saratoga. He was no surprise in the 1 1/16-mile Cab Calloway on Saratoga turf, going off at even money from the outside post and kicking clear at the finish.
“We didn’t get away the cleanest,” acknowledged winning jockey Tyler Gaffalione, who has ridden Jolting Joe in three of his starts, including a runner-up effort over nine rivals in Gulfstream’s Armed Forces Stakes for open 2-year-olds going a turf mile last September. “He was traveling nicely throughout, and when I asked him for run at the top of the lane, he gave me an extra punch (covering his final five-sixteenths in under 30 seconds). We haven’t seen the best of him yet.”
“He proved our high hopes for him today,” remarked winning trainer Michael Maker. “He seems to find some tough competition (including his third-placed rival in the Armed Forces, who six weeks later would win a Gulfstream Park turf stakes by 5¼ lengths at 1-to-2). I think he will run on as a Mission Impazible.”
Jolting Joe is Mission Impazible’s second open-margin black-type stakes winner of 2020 from his fourth crop – following 7¾-length Damon Runyon winner DREAM BIGGER ($392,178) at Aqueduct in March – and his 26th winner of 2020. Mission Impazible was leading Northeast first-crop sire, second-crop sire, and third-crop sire of 2016, 2017, and 2018 respectively; all his crops have produced stakes winners.
The summer succession of Mission Impazible winners began on June 18 when owner-trainer Robertino Diodoro’s odds-on BIG HEADED BABY broke his maiden going 6½ furlongs at Evangeline Downs. The next day, Morris Bailey’s filly, ROZIERE, broke her maiden against 11 rivals going 1 1/16 miles on Belmont turf. On June 25, Twin Creek Racing Stables LLC’s and Parkland Thoroughbreds’ favored 3-year-old, INSIDE INFO, scored his second victory at Belmont in 22 days by beating nine mostly older rivals at 6½ furlongs. On July 6, John C. Azzatori’s THREATLOVESMIDNITE romped by five lengths in a Parx Racing starter allowance at a mile and 70 yards for his first two-turn win and third career victory. On July 18, Julio E. Tapahuasco’s 3-year-old ELITE MISSION broke his maiden by 6¾ lengths against nine going a mile on Gulfstream Park slop. On July 22, Athena Peters’ FORECASTER beat eight in a five-furlong Finger Lakes sprint for his third victory. Two days later, 3-year-old OPERATIVE broke his maiden against 11 going a mile on Saratoga turf, winning for his breeders, Jay A. Lieberman, Tim Mawhinney, and Carol Beglin. Two more Mission Impazible winners followed three days later in allowances near both coasts: Our Blue Streaks Stables’ veteran miler, HONOR MISSION, at Finger Lakes, and BUTTERSCOTCH BLEND, who won by 3¼ lengths going 6½ furlongs at Hastings Racecourse for trainer Rob and Victoria Gilker, Lana Brindley, and Joy Cameron. On August 2, Eagle View Farm’s 3-year-old filly, GIPSEY SORCERESS, scored her second open-margin victory of 2020 by beating a field of mostly older rivals going 5½ furlongs at Monmouth. Winning first-out in a Finger Lakes open maiden special on August 5 was Scott Durgan’s semi-homebred May-foaled 3-year-old filly, MISS CIRCULAR GAL. Preceding Jolting Joe’s Cab Calloway win by about four hours at Finger Lakes was owner-trainer Carlos V. Dominguez’s AMERICAN MISSION, who romped by 5½ lengths at odds-on going 5½ furlongs for his fourth career victory.