Big Brown colt Ground Transport was never headed en route to comfortable victory in the LR Harrison Johnson Memorial (1800m) at Laurel on Saturday.
Ground Transport (4c Big Brown – Extry by Broad Brush) had finished fourth in the G3 Mineshaft Stakes at Fair Grounds before travelling north from New Orleans to Maryland.
It brought up a stakes winning double for Vinery shuttlers at Laurel following More Than a Cruise (More Than Ready) in the LR Conniver Stakes. And earlier in the day, More Than Ready sired his latest maiden winner when Busterrama (ex Ice Lady by Cat Thief) broke through over 1600m.
Ground Transport carved out a three length victory for managing part-owners West Point Thoroughbreds and the St Elias and Get Grounded Stables. “The plan was to control the pace and it worked out very well,” apprentice jockey Trevor McCarthy said. “I had a lot of horse in the lane – I was sure we would win at the furlong.”
Big Brown has now sired 7 stakes winners and assistant trainer Chris Davis said Ground Transport is the consummate professional. “We brought him up on Thursday morning and worked him on Friday. Obviously, he likes it here and Trevor rode him perfectly.”
Ground Transport was bred in Kentucky by River Bend Farm and is a half-brother to winners by Dynaformer, Rahy and War Chant. They are from Extry who is an unraced half-sister to the dam of Group 1 winning Australasian shuttler Stravinsky.
Big Brown won the 2008 Kentucky Derby and yearlings from his second southern crop continue to make good money at the 2014 majors. They sold to $180,000 at the Gold Coast Magic Millions and $155,000 at the Inglis Classic Sale.