North American-based Boisterous, owned by Phipps
Stable, and Irish-bred invader Crackerjack King, owned by the
Crackerjack King Syndicate, were set as the top two choices Wednesday
when a field of 11 was drawn for Saturday's 30th anniversary edition of
the Arlington Million – as always the centerpiece event of the Chicago
Thoroughbred racing season.Boisterous, conditioned by Hall of Fame trainer Shug McGaughey, was
pegged as the 4-1 slight choice in the Arlington Million morning line
with jockey Jose Lezcano aboard, while the Irish-bred Crackerjack King,
trained by Italian-born Marco Botti, was installed as the 5-1 second
choice in the Million with Irish reinsman Colm O'Donoghue slated for the
Boisterous finished second by a neck in his most recent start in the
Grade III Arlington Handicap July 14 after losing ground by racing
six-wide, and before that was third in Belmont's Grade I Manhattan
Handicap on Belmont Stakes Day June 9.
Crackerjack King disappointed in his last start in Great Britain's
Group I Coral-Eclipse at Sandown July 7 but before that he captured
Italy's Group I Premio Presidente della Repubblica at Capannelle on May
Behind Boisterous, the choice among the half-dozen North
American-based Million runners at 6-1 is Priscilla Vaccarezza's Little
Mike, who won Churchill's Grade I Woodford Reserve Turf Classic on
Kentucky Derby Day May 5 and most recently finished third in the Grade I
Shoemaker Mile at Hollywood Park June 30. Eclipse Award-winning rider
Ramon Dominguez is named in the irons.
Also pegged at 6-1 are
Darley Stud Management's British-bred Afsare and Mrs. Fitriani Hay,
Derrick Smith, Mrs. John Magnier and Michael Tabor's British-bred
Treasure Beach. The latter won last year's Secretariat Stakes but most
recently disappointed when fourth in Ireland's Group III Ballyroan
Stakes at Leopardstown on Aug. 9.
Last year's Arlington Million winning rider Jamie Spencer gets the
mount on Treasure Beach and Afsare has jockey Kieran Fallon listed.
Afsare was most recently second by a neck in Great Britain's Group II
Sky Bet York Stakes at York July 28 but won Sandown's listed Ambant
Gala Stakes before that on July 6.
Robert Courtney Jr.'s Rahystrada, who won this year's Arlington
Handicap as well as its 2010 renewal, was fifth in last summer's Million
and fourth in the 2010 Million, is 8-1 in the morning line, as is
Darley Stud Management's Irish-bred Colombian, eighth in the Group I
Prince of Wales's Stakes in his last start during Great Britain's
prestigious Royal Ascot meeting June 20 but was the winner of Sandown's
Group III Sir Gordon Richards Stakes April 28.
Riding assignments have Julien Leparoux aboard Rahystrada and William Buick astride Colombian.
Completing the Arlington Million XXX field is Mark Hawtin's Wigmore
Hall (12-1) with Hayley Turner in the stirrups; Lael Stable and All In
Stable's Willcox Inn (12-1), James Graham; Joseph Allen's Vertiformer,
(20-1), Jeffrey Sanchez; and Millard Seldin Revocable Trust and the
Estate of Hoss Inman's Cherokee Lord (30-1), Francisco Torres up.