LEXINGTON, KY (April 5, 2017) – Keeneland’s Jockey Garden adjacent to the Saddling Paddock features 11 statues commemorating winners of the track’s most prestigious races such as the $1 million Toyota Blue Grass (G2), which will be run for the 93rd time on Saturday. Each jockey is painted to replicate the winning owner’s silks, including Dennis Albaugh’s Albaugh Family Stable, which won the Toyota Blue Grass last year with Brody’s Cause. The blue and gray colors will remain on the statue if Albaugh’s J Boys Echo wins this year’s Toyota Blue Grass.
J Boys Echo is trained by Dale Romans, who also trained Brody’s Cause.
“Having won the race last year with Brody’s Cause, it really was not a hard decision to run in the (Toyota) Blue Grass again,” Steve Castagnola, bloodstock manager for the Albaugh operation, said. “It is incredible to be back. We know how hard this game is. We are very fortunate and we have a great team.”
J Boys Echo comes into the Toyota Blue Grass after winning the Gotham (G3) at Aqueduct on March 4. His resume includes a victory in a Keeneland maiden race last year.
The owners were familiar with the Mineshaft colt’s lineage when they saw J Boys Echo at Keeneland’s 2015 September Yearling Sale and purchased him for $485,000. They raced his half-brother, Unbridled Outlaw, a Keeneland September graduate who became a graded stakes-placed performer.
“When we went to see J Boys Echo at the sale, he had a lovely way of walking and a lot of presence and class,” Castagnola said.
J Boys Echo is named for Albaugh’s son-in-law Jason Loutsch, who often is called “J Boy.” The second part of the moniker is a nod to the colt’s dam, Letgomyecho.