“The last three weeks my focus has been on Ella and the Breeders Crown. This is what we all worked for all year long.” Surick exclaimed. Nick runs his own training operation in New Jersey along with owning some horses with other trainers and has even thrown some thoroughbreds in the mix as well. But all of that means nothing to him right now as he is getting ready to make his training debut in the Breeders Crown with Ella Christina in the three year old filly pace. Last year, Nick teamed up with trainer Erv Miller and sent Someomensomewhere to post as his first start as an owner in the Breeders Crown, she ended up winning the two year old filly pace final, with an exciting and close finish.
Ella Christina was had a barn change earlier this year. I was curious to see what Nick thought of her when he first got her, what kind of stock was he dealing with? “We kind of bought her as just an overnight race horse. I dropped her in a non winners of 6 at Yonkers and she didn’t get in.” Surick said. “The Adioo Volo was coming up and last year it was a five horse field and I kind of thought it was going to be the same way this year because people might be afraid of Blazin Britches. They actually ended up drawing 17 horses and I drew the eight hole, my plan wasn’t working out as well as I wanted it to going into it, but she ended up splitting into the easier division and winning at 50/1, after her first start she was pretty much a free horse.” Nick added.
Ella Christina was a participant in The Jugett elimination finished 4th, made her way into the final. She drew the 7 hole and was parked the whole mile. She then went to the Lady Maud at Yonkers, where she was the 3/5 favorite and was unfortunately scratched. She also competed in The Courageous Lady, “I was disappointed in her the night of the race, then Monday morning came and I pulled her blood and she had tied up. We had shipped her five hours to Northfield Park the morning of the race and I don’t think it was her style.” Surick said.
Okay now lets gets to business, Ella Christina had a very impressive elimination, shook loose the last 16th of the mile to win in 1:51.0 coming the last quarter 26.3. Paying $72.00 to win. “I was hoping for no elimination in the Breeders Crown because I thought she needed a break. But we only had to beat one for the final. I knew she was talented enough to race with these horses because she has beaten them before, I just didn’t think she would win that night, because our plan was to just trip her out from behind and make it to the final.” Surick explained.
Ella Christina for driver Tim Tetrick draws post three in the final, Nick says “If we could have picked our post position we would have picked the three. I can honestly say that right now, today and after the elimination this is the best she has been attitude wise, weight wise, soundness wise, everything right now is lining up to be perfect for her going into this race and we just need a little bit of racing luck.”
“Everyone dreams of being a part of a horse that makes it to the Breeders Crown, when I started training horses I never thought that I would actually make it here.” Nick says as he reflects on this amazing opportunity. “The number of people that make it to this level are very slim and I have been very fortunate to have a great team to support me and amazing owners that have backed me up from the start and every step of the way. We’ve all grown together. I think teamwork is very important and I am very thankful for my team, and that everyone gets along great.”
“It all comes down to the Breeders Crown, this is what we all work for and this is my focus. Everything that crosses my mind has to do with one horse. It would be absolutely amazing to win my training debut in the Breeders Crown.”
Best of luck to Nick, Tim and of course Ella Christina as they go to the gate in race 9 from post 3 at Hoosier Park Racing and Casino for the 3 year old filly pace Breeders Crown final.
Also be sure to tune into http://www.posttimewithmikeandmike.com for FULL & LIVE coverage of the Breeders Crown.