Did You Know? The Hoppertunity Edition


Hoppertunity by Barbara D. Livingston

For five seasons, he was a mainstay on the Southern California racing scene.

Throughout his time on the track, he was a blue collar type. Fans of his saw him finish in the top three on multiple occasions, achieve multiple graded stakes triumphs, and earn millions of dollars on the track.
In a thirty-four race career, Hoppertunity managed to not only win, but become a fan favorite. A regular in Bob Baffert’s barn, Hoppertunity was a horse who bucked the trend of being retired after a handful of starts and sent off to the breeding shed.
Starting his career in early 2014, Hoppertunity continued competing into the summer of 2018, taking victories at tracks throughout the country as well as stakes placings.
Many aspects of that career are on display here. You may know of some of them, others maybe not. What is found, however, is that Hoppertunity produced multiple accomplishments in his five years of action.
Let’s take a look at some of them. This is Did You Know? The Hoppertunity Edition.
-Hoppertunity is one of only four horses to win four editions of the San Antonio Stakes.
-During his career, Hoppertunity won at four tracks: Belmont Park, Churchill Downs, Oaklawn Park, and Santa Anita.
-Hoppertunity won or placed in eight Grade I events.
-In four starts in the Grade I Clark Handicap, Hoppertunity was third or better on three occasions.
-That was also the case of the Grade II San Antonio Stakes. Hoppertunity ran in that race four times, and was no worse than third in all but one of them.
-Hoppertunity competed in twenty-eight consecutive stakes races.
-All of Hoppertunity’s nine wins came routing.
-The average payout for Hoppertunity’s victories was more than $8.10.
-The highest win payout produced by Hoppertunity came when he broke his maiden. The bettors that had a $2 win ticket on him were rewarded with $15.20.
-There was one time where Hoppertunity won on a track labeled “wet fast:” That happened in the 2014 Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park.
-Starting with his debut in early January 2014 to the Clark Handicap at the end of November 2015, Hoppertunity started in sixteen races. He was in the top three in twelve of them.
-Hoppertunity won or placed in twenty stakes during his career.
-At one point, Hoppertunity had a streak of eight successive finishes of third or better, and all but one of those races were graded stakes.
-Hoppertunity won two out of three starts at Belmont Park.
-One of those victories at Belmont was the Grade II Brooklyn Handicap, and Hoppertunity joined his sire, Any Given Saturday, as a winner in that event. Any Given Saturday was the race’s champion in 2007.
-Hoppertunity’s time of 2:00.68 in he 2016 Jockey Club Gold Cup is the third fastest time of the race in the last fifteen editions.
-Hoppertunity has ties to Buckpasser and Sword Dancer, both of whom also won the Jockey Club Gold Cup.
-Going through the family tree, you will find that Hoppertunity is related to multiple Triple Crown winners, including Seattle Slew, Secretariat, and War Admiral.
-Hoppertunity also liked Churchill Downs. In six races under the Twin Spires, Hoppertunity was in the money in four of them.
-When it comes to career earnings, Hoppertunity has led Any Given Saturday’s progeny every year since 2014 except for one.
-The 2016 season was the best for Hoppertunity in terms of earnings, for he won more than $2.7 million on the track that year.
-Hoppertunity is one of just six horses to win the Tokyo City Cup at age seven.
-Three of Hoppertunity’s victories came at 1 1/16 miles.
-Two of them came at 1 1/2 miles.
-Hoppertunity beat Breeders’ Cup Classic champion Accelerate in the 2017 Grade II San Antonio Stakes.
Hoppertunity earned the respect of fans, and he completed a fine career for himself. Congratulations, Hoppertunity, and may you have a great retirement.