Dance to Bristol, Ballerina, Saratoga, 23rd August 2013
Trained by Ollie Figgins III, Sire: Speightstown. Dam: Dance to Dawn
Susan Wantz rode and trained event horses for much of her life before getting involved with Thoroughbreds in 1997. She and her husband David own ten horses in Maryland. “I just love Thoroughbreds,” she said. “Thoroughbreds run because they love to run.”
Dance to Bristol sure does love to run. Wantz purchased Dance to Bristol for $42,000 as a yearling and has watched her evolve into one of the best filly sprinters in North America. The daughter of Speightstown has won ten of 19 starts, with eight seconds, and is less than $20,000 shy of a million in earnings.
Just three-and-a-half weeks after giving Wantz her first Grade 2 stakes victory, getting up in the final strides to capture the Honorable Miss Handicap at Saratoga Race Course by a neck over Classic Point, Dance to Bristol did even better, holding off Book Review by a head to capture the 35th running of the $500,000 Grade 1 Ballerina Stakes.
When jockey Xavier Perez brought Dance to Bristol back to the Ballerina winner’s circle, Wantz rubbed her filly’s neck, congratulated Perez, and then wiped tears away before pictures were taken. “You don’t find horses with that much heart,” Wantz said. “You can’t breed that.”