Lightnin Runner first stakes winner for Battalion Runner
Sunday, September 18, 2022

Lightnin Runner (#2) edges Strong Willed in the $75,000 Rachel's Turn S. - Coady photography

Lightnin Runner, who became the first winner for Battalion Runner when she broke her maiden in July, also became her sire’s first stakes winner from a limited first crop with a determined score in the $75,000 Rachel’s Turn Stakes at Charles Town on Saturday night, Sept. 17.

Piloted by Antonio Lopez, who was also aboard the filly in her debut win, Lightnin Runner trailed the compact field of five early in the 4 ½-furlong dash. Racing in close attention of the pace, Lightnin Runner dug in gamely around the far turn and collared the leaders in the late stages to prevail by a neck at the wire (WATCH RACE).

With the game win, Lightnin Runner remained unbeaten in two lifetime starts.  The bay filly is out of the winning Mineshaft mare My Lightnin Strike. Bred in West Virginia by Ronney and Nicole Brown, Lightnin Runner is owned by George Nyren and is conditioned by Angel Rodriguez.

Battalion Runner is a Grade 1-placed son of the legendary Unbridled’s Song. He finished second in the Wood Memorial (G2) and third in the Dwyer S. (G3). Trained by Todd Pletcher, Battalion Runner won a maiden special weight by a dominating 8 ¾ lengths at Gulfstream Park at two and then captured his 3-year-old bow and two-turn debut, also at Gulfstream. A $700,000 Keeneland September yearling, Battalion Runner is produced from the Tapit mare Tamboz, a full sister to Tapizar from the family of Grade 1 winners Olympio, Untapable, Cuvee, and Paddy O Prado.

Bolstered by Lightnin Runner’s stakes victory, Battalion Runner is currently the third-ranked Florida Freshman Sire despite being represented by just six first-crop foals. 

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