The likely field for the 142nd running of the
Grade 1, $1 million Belmont Stakes swelled to 11 Thursday with the announcement
that Ike and Dawn Thrash’s Dave in Dixie is targeting the June 5 race.
Trained by John Sadler, the son of Dixie Union broke his
maiden at first asking last summer at Del
Mar and was sixth behind eventual Preakness winner Lookin at Lucky in the Grade
1 Norfolk in his only other start as a juvenile. Dave in Dixie began his 3-year-old campaign with a
second-place effort in the Grade 2 Robert B. Lewis at Santa Anita, and followed
that by finishing sixth in the Grade 2 San Felipe and fifth in the Grace 3
Illinois Derby, his first start on dirt, on April 3.
According to Thrash, the decision to join the Belmont field was finalized after Dave in Dixie
worked a mile at Hollywood Park
Thursday morning in 1:39.60.
“It’s worth a shot,” said Thrash, who was represented in the
Kentucky Derby by Line of David, who finished 18th, but whose Derby
Trial winner, Hurricane Ike, was withdrawn from Preakness consideration the
morning of entry. “He worked for the last time [before the Belmont]
this morning and we waited until afterward to make sure he was coming.”
According to Thrash, Calvin Borel will ride.
In addition to Dave in Dixie, the field for the Belmont
includes Drosselmeyer, First Dude, Fly Down,
Game On Dude, Ice Box, Make Music for Me, Spangled Star,
Stately Victor, Stay Put, and Uptowncharlybrown.