Friesan Fire

Jockey Gabriel Saez reacts aboard Friesan Fire after winning the 96th running of the Louisiana Derby horse race at the Fair Grounds Race Course and Slots in New Orleans, La., Saturday, March 14, 2009. Photo by Alexander Barkoff | Associated Press

Jockey Gabriel Saez reacts aboard Friesan Fire after winning the 96th running of the Louisiana Derby horse race at the Fair Grounds Race Course and Slots in New Orleans, La., Saturday, March 14, 2009. Photo by Alexander Barkoff | Associated Press

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For a brief while, it looked like Friesan Fire was threatening to make a liar out of trainer Larry Jones.

Since the moment he arrived in his barn, Jones thought the son of A.P. Indy had the look of a Kentucky Derby contender. After a few bumps in the road, Friesan Fire has finally begun to justify that initial assessment.

Since suffering three straight losses to conclude his juvenile campaign, it appears the light bulb has come on for the beautifully bred Friesan Fire with his wins in the Grade III Lecomte Stakes at Fair Grounds on Jan. 10 and the Grade III Risen Star on Saturday.

Friesan Fire battled with his immaturity after breaking his maiden his first time out at Delaware Park. During his third-place run in the Grade II Futurity Stakes at Belmont, he broke poorly and didn’t get aggressive until late. He was rank early and finished second in an allowance race at Fair Grounds in December.

“Larry added blinkers that race because he felt when he did get going he would kind of lose interest and unfortunately he just ran off and got tired,” said Tom Ludt, manager of Vinery Stables, who bred and co-owns Friesan Fire. “In the Lecomte, he did the things Larry said he could do and just hadn’t shown. He has the ability to rate and he has that great kick.”

Just the Facts

Owner: Vinery Stables and Fox Hill Farm
Trainer: Larry Jones
Breeder: Grapestock LLC
Bloodline: By A.P. Indy-Bollinger, by Dehere
Color and gender: Bay colt
Career record: Six starts, 3-1-1, $243,265
Last start: Won Grade III Risen Star Stakes at Fair Grounds on Feb. 7
Next start: Possible for Grade II Louisiana Derby at Fair Grounds on March 14
Potential trouble: Needs to maintain focus in the stretch

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