Last month, G3 Bourbon Stakes runner up Brown Almighty
went to post as the second choice in the Smarty Jones Stakes
, his first start on dirt. After being caught wide in the early stages of the race, jockey Corey Nakatani
moved Brown Almighty closer to the inside but the colt was never a factor after failing to engage in the race. After that uncharacteristically dull effort, trainer Tim Ice
had his charge scoped, and vets discovered that Brown Almighty had had an undetected lung infection.
Bearing that in mind, I believe Brown Almighty is worth another look in today’s G3 Southwest Stakes
at Oaklawn Park. He will again face the top three finishers from the Smarty Jones, Will Take Charge
, Texas Bling
, and Always in a Tiz
, as well as sixth place finisher Officer Alex
. Joining the fray is the highly regarded Super Ninety Nine
, who has been made the morning line favorite. Now while this field is full of nice colts, it is Brown Almighty that I keep going back to.
There’s a lot of upside to this three-year old son of Big Brown
. First of all, the Southwest distance should not be an issue for him. In his only other try at 8.5 furlongs, Brown Almighty finished second through the disqualification of Really Sharp
who swerved out with a furlong left in the G3 Bourbon Stakes
. (You can see a replay of the race through a link near the bottom of Brown Almighty's page.) Along with being steadied behind the bumping and jostling in the stretch, Brown Almighty was also trapped along the rail. When he finally found running room and regained momentum after being steadied, it was too late.
Secondly, if you throw out the Smarty Jones, Brown Almighty really does have a good chance at running well on the dirt. People forget that his sire Big Brown began and ended his career with wins on the turf, making him a winner on both surfaces. Additionally, Brown Almighty’s dam Gone Goodbye’s four career wins all came on the dirt even though her sire Gone for Real was a graded stakes winner on the grass. With such a good mix of turf and dirt in his immediate pedigree, every indication that he can win on either surface is right there. And with morning line odds of 10-1, why not take a shot?