Tom Albertrani will be represented by West Point Thoroughbreds runners
in both $150,000 New York Stallion Series races for 2-year-olds on
Saturday at Aqueduct Racetrack as he has entered Empire Dreams in the Great White Way division and Skye Saratoga in the Fifth Avenue division.
Photo: New York Daily News
races are six furlongs, with the Fifth Avenue restricted to fillies.
Aqueduct also will present the $125,000 NYSS Thunder Rumble for
3-year-olds and up and the NYSS $125,000 Staten Island for fillies and
mares on the card.
Dreams looks to go one better after finishing second by three lengths
to Grade 2 Sanford winner Wired Bryan in Belmont Park's seven-furlong
Bertram F. Bongard on October 19, Empire Showcase Day presented by The
Fund. The son of Patriot Act entered the Bongard off a 1 ¾-length
victory in his third start, a six-furlong maiden race on September 29 at
been very consistent in all of his races," said Albertrani of Empire
Dreams. "We drew on the rail, and he's got a little speed, so it doesn't
look like a bad position to be in. He's coming off a nice second in his
last start. This looks like a very competitive spot, and he's prepared
Dreams, the 6-5 morning line favorite for the Great White Way, will
depart from the rail with Irad Ortiz, Jr. in the irons.
Saratoga, by Golden Missile, brings less experience into the Fifth
Avenue, having made two starts in her career. After finishing fourth on
September 29 at Belmont, she stalked the pace before kicking clear in
the stretch to graduate by nine lengths on November 1 at Aqueduct.
coming off a huge win," said Albertrani. "She really moved forward off
her first race. This looks like a very good opportunity for her to come
back and hopefully run back to her maiden win."
Irad Ortiz also will ride Skye Saratoga, the 5-2 morning-line second choice who drew post 3.
Albetrani said Ultimate Empire will be scratched out of the $125,000 NYSS Thunder Rumble Division for 3-year-olds and up.
Next Saturday, Albertrani is likely to run Toasting,
also owned by West Point Thoroughbreds, in the Grade 3, $400,000
Comely, one of four graded stakes on the November 30 card. In her most
recent start, Toasting picked up her first stakes win when she took the
restricted Dream Rush on October 20 at Belmont. She'll be stretching out
from seven furlongs to 1 1/8 miles in the Comely. She has placed in
four stakes at one mile or longer, having finished second in this year's
restricted My Flag at Saratoga and third in the Grade 1 Frizette at
Belmont in 2012 and in the restricted OBS Championship Filly Division at
the Ocala Training Center and the Grade 2 Black-Eyed Susan at Pimlico
is coming in off a really good win," said Albertrani. "We cut her back
in distance, and it worked out very well. She broke a little slowly and
closed really well off a fast pace. We're going to stretch her back out
again; some of her best races have been going longer distances. She's
been pressured on the front end in her races going long, so we're going
to try and use a little bit of strategy as we did last time, and try to
take back and make one run and hopefully she can come back and run as
well as she did last time. She got off a little slow last time, going
into a strong wind, so it worked out in our favor."
* * *
Miss Narcissist got
all the attention when she won the Joseph A. Gimma on October 19 at
Belmont Park, and the 2-year-old filly will try to remain in the
spotlight when she competes in the $125,000 New York Stallion Series
Fifth Avenue division on Saturday at Aqueduct Racetrack.
Rice has handled Miss Narcissist with patience, and the trainer's work
paid off when the filly set the pace en route to a 5 ¼-length win in the
Joseph A. Gimma. Previously, she had made two starts at Saratoga,
finishing fifth on August 8 after acting fractiously in the paddock and
behind the starting gate, then prevailing by 2 1/2 lengths on August 28.
She has worn blinkers in both of her wins.
continued to just settle down," said Rice, who owns Miss Narcissist in
partnership with Acqua Nova Stable and Winter Park Partners. "When we
first got her, she was pretty high strung. She's blossomed all fall. Her
antics in Saratoga in the paddock and on the racetrack were typical of
her at the time. The blinkers helped a lot, as did time and maturity."
Narcissist, the 2-1 morning-line favorite for the Fifth Avenue, drew
post position 6 in the field of eight and will be ridden once again by
see maybe three horses with speed, one of them being her," said Rice.
"She's on the outside, so I'll leave it up to Junior Alvarado."
One of the two horses drawn outside of Miss Narcissist is her stablemate Champagne Ruby,
who was fifth in the Gimma after being bumped at the start. Champagne
Ruby has a pair of wins, including a score in the Shesastonecoldfox
Stakes in September at Finger Lakes, in five starts. Rice trains
Champagne Ruby on behalf of her father, Clyde.
Gimma] was a sub-par race for her," said Rice. "She'd run so well at
Finger Lakes and I was quite surprised at how poorly she ran in the
Gimma. I'm hoping she'll rebound into a good race. She was bumped at the
start in the Gimma; I think she was intimidated. There's bound to be an
improvement, I hope it's enough for her to get a good piece of it."
who won the Hudson Handicap on October 19 at Belmont, isn't eligible
for the New York Stallion Series, so the 4-year-old colt will make his
graded stakes debut in Aqueduct's Grade 3 Fall Highweight Handicap next
Thursday, Thanksgiving Day. The Fall Highweight is a six-furlong race
for 3-year-olds and up. Prior the Hudson, Palace captured the Chowder's
First overnight stakes on August 23 at Saratoga.
coming off two consecutive wins in New York-bred company at six
furlongs, so it's the right surface, the right distance, and if we were
going to go for a graded stakes, the time is right," said Rice. "He's
obviously back into good form, and it's time to give it a try."
* * *
stakes race featuring the eligible sons and daughters of New York
stallions highlight Saturday's card at Aqueduct, anchored by the
$125,000 Thunder Rumble division for 3-year-olds and up at seven
furlongs, which will be run as race 8 on the nine-race card.
Favored at 7-2 on the morning line is Chapman,
no worse than third in eight starts. Trained by Chris Englehart, the
3-year-old son of Stanislavky is in search of his first stakes win, and
enters off a 5 3/4-length optional claiming victory last time out at
Belmont Park. Also expected to attract support are West Hills Giant, most recently fifth in the Basket Weave stakes, and Comandante, winner of an optional claimer last time out.
Ten fillies and mares were entered in the $125,000 Staten Island division, with Kelli Got Frosty the narrow choice at 3-1 on the morning line over Keep Bustin
(7-2) in the seven-furlong race. Winner of the 2012 East View but
winless in six starts this year, Kelli Got Frosty most recently was
third in an optional claimer behind Keep Bustin and Haldane on October
11 at Belmont. Keep Bustin, a 3-year-old daughter of Bustin Stones, is
4-4-1 from 10 starts this year.
second to multiple stakes winner Wired Bryan in the Bertram F. Bongard
most recently, heads a field of six 2-year-olds for the Great White Way
division at six furlongs. Heading the challengers at 5-2 and 3-1,
respectively, are Sol the Freud, fourth in the Bongard, and Free Mugatu, fourth in the New York Breeders' Futurity at Finger Lakes last time out.
Joseph A. Gimma victress Miss Narcissist is the 2-1 morning-line favorite over seven other juvenile fillies, including Skye Saratoga,
in the $150,000 Fifth Avenue division, also at six furlongs. Trained by
Linda Rice, the Freud filly has won two of three starts, including a
maiden victory on August 28 at Saratoga. The second choice at 5-2 on the
morning line, Skye Saratoga enters off a nine-length maiden win on
November 1 at the Big A.