Sibelius sets stakes record in 2023 debut
Saturday, February 11, 2023
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Not This Time, last year’s leading Third-Crop sire, got his first stakes winner of 2023 on Feb. 11 at Tampa Bay Downs when Sibelius set a stakes record in the six-furlong Pelican S.

Sibelius, who came into the Pelican off an impressive score in the Mr. Prospector S. (G3) at Gulfstream Park on New Year’s Eve, was razor-sharp once again on Saturday. He broke very well to get the lead just in front of Doctor Oscar. The pair would stay side-by-side through most of the race. They flew through a half-mile in :43.88 and stayed together until inside the final furlong, when Sibelius edged away to win by 1 ¼-lengths in 1:08.75.

His Beyer Speed Figure of 100 was the third time in his career he has posted a triple-digit number.

“I was hoping for an easier time out there today,” trainer Jeremiah O’Dwyer said. “We knew that (Doctor Oscar) has speed, and he kind of took it to us. I leave it up to Junior when he rides this horse. You don’t tell these good riders what to do – they play the break and see how it goes.

“He was on the lead the whole way, he got pressured the whole way and he was strong at the finish. I’m just very proud of the way he battled and held on to the wire.”

Sibelius, owned by Jun H. Park and Delia Nash, is now 6-3-3 in 18 starts and has earned $488,889. The 5-year-old was bred by Taylor Brothers Properties LLC, Pollock Farm, Patrick Payne et al.

O’Dwyer said he is hopeful of getting an invitation for Sibelius to compete in the Dubai Golden Shaheen (G1) on March 25.


Posted to | NOT THIS TIME