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SouthsideWarriorSouthside Warrior didn’t let a sloppy track slow him down as he rallied from last to reel in the leaders and go on to his fifth career victory at Laurel Park on the afternoon of Feb. 23. The win pushed his career earnings over the quarter-million mark to $254,521 in 26 career starts.

The 5-year-old son of Warrior’s Reward races for R. Larry Johnson and Dark Hollow Farm. He was bred in the name of Dark Hollow out of the multiple stakes performer and stakes producer Bamba, who produced seven named foals at Dark Hollow. All are winners.

Bamba’s daughter Plum captured the Maryland Juvenile Filly Championship and was named Maryland-bred champion 2-year-old filly of 2011 when winning three of her four starts that season. Stakes-placed at 3, she retired to the Dark Hollow broodmare band an earner of $128,440. The dam of a $125,000 Fasig-Tipton Midlantic sales yearling by Bodemeister in 2017, Plum is due to foal in May to Upstart and will be bred back to Bodemeister.


Another of Bamba’s daughters, Bread and Butter, is a member of the broodmare band. Winner of her first two starts impressively at Churchill Downs and Oaklawn Park at 2 and 3, Bread and Butter was sold for $240,000 at the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic May 2-year-old sale in 2013. She made her way back to Maryland this year after spending the past few years as a young broodmare in Arkansas for the late Oaklawn Park owner Charles J. Cella. Due to foal in February to Cella’s Oaklawn Handicap-G2 winner Cyber Secret, Bread and Butter has been booked back to Mizzen Mast.

Southside Warrior is the richest of Bamba’s runners and earned his own black-type when finishing second in last year’s Maryland Million Classic in his stakes debut. He initially sold as a yearling for $80,000 at the Keeneland September sale and launched his career with one of the nation’s top trainers, Mark Casse, for owners Bill and Vicki Poston and James Brad Smith.

Five starts after winning in allowance company at Fair Grounds in March 2017, trainer Mike Trombetta was savvy to take the colt back for $40,000 in a claiming race at Saratoga for Johnson. Southside Warrior has since been gelded, and has now finished in the top three in 50 percent of his starts. That record looks to keep rising in 2018!