Let’s Go Stable’s El Padrino, a son of Pulpit from the barn of multiple Eclipse Award-winning trainer
Todd Pletcher, is expected to be among those arriving in New Orleans to contest the
Grade III Lecomte Stakes at Fair Grounds Jan. 21, according to Fair Grounds stakes coordinator
Lecomte, for 3-year-olds of Triple Crown potential, is the headline
event of six stakes worth $650,000 to be contested on Fair Grounds’
Road to the Derby Kickoff Day Presented by Hotel Monteleone
on the third Saturday in January.
Padrino has not run since concluding his juvenile campaign with a
fast-closing third-place finish in Aqueduct’s Grade II Remsen Stakes
26. However, the chestnut colt out of the Giant’s Causeway mare
Enchanted Rock worked a bullet five furlongs in 1:00.40 at South
Center Monday morning.
Eclipse Award-winning jockey
John Velazquez is expected to journey to
New Orleans to ride El Padrino in the Lecomte, first leg of Fair Grounds’ three-race sophomore series that concludes with the
$1 million Louisiana Derby,
to be run April 1 on the current session’s Closing Day.
to his third-place finish in the Remsen, where he was beaten
three-quarters of a length for the win, El Padrino broke his maiden by
3/4-lengths over sloppy going at Belmont
Park Oct. 29.
SPRINGBOARD MILE WINNER TED’S
FOLLY ON HAND FOR LECOMTE STAKES
Steve Martin’s Ted’s Folly, winner of
Park’s $300,000 Springboard Mile Stakes Dec. 10, arrived at Fair Grounds late last month and is expected to contest the upcoming
Grade III Lecomte Stakes Jan. 21, according to Fair Grounds stakes coordinator
Two years ago,
Jack Hammer’s Ron the Greek won Fair Grounds’ 2010 Lecomte Stakes after finishing fourth in the Springboard Mile, and last season George and Lori Hall’s
Pants On Fire parlayed a runner-up finish in the 2011 Lecomte to a win in last season’s
Grade II Louisiana Derby.
This spring’s $1,000,000 Louisiana Derby will be run April 1 with the
Grade II Risen Star Stakes Feb. 25
serving as the bridge between the Lecomte and the 99th running of the
showcase race of the New Orleans’ Thoroughbred racing season.
Ted’s Folly, an Oklahoma-bred conditioned by
Wilson Brown who has now
won six straight, captured the restricted $50,000 Oklahoma Stallion
Stakes by 5 1/4-lengths Nov. 18 prior to his Springboard Mile score and
won the state-bred $79,000 Oklahoma Juvenile before
that on Oct. 28.
According to Jones, others considered likely for the Lecomte on Fair Grounds’ Road to the Derby Kickoff Day include Jerry Namy’s
Shared Property, winner of the Grade III Arlington-Washington Futurity Sept. 10 and subsequently sixth in Keeneland’s
Grade I Breeders’ Futurity Oct. 8; Stewart Madison, Justin Querbes III and Al Stall Jr.’s
Seven Likely Sins, second by three-quarters of a length in Churchill’s
Grade III Iroquois Stakes Oct. 30 and most recently fourth in the
Grade III Delta Jackpot at Delta Downs Nov. 19; Willis Horton’s
Laurie’s Rocket, second by a nose in Fair Grounds’
$60,000 Sugar Bowl Stakes Dec. 17, fifth in the Delta
Jackpot before that and fourth in Saratoga’s
Grade I Hopeful Sept 5; as well as Terry Hamilton’s
Hammers Terror, a winner of his last two straight including a 2 3/4-length tally here Dec. 8.
Local maiden winners
Tetradrachm, Z Dager and Gowhereyougaze, owned respectively by Mrs. Jerry Amerman, Zayat Stables and Agave Racing Stable, complete the list of the early likely Lecomte
participants, while the Sugar Bowl winner Exfactor, owned by Stoneway Farm, is considered a possibility at this time.
FIVE SUPPORTING STAKES SLATED FOR ROAD TO THE DERBY KICKOFF DAY
The 25th renewal of Fair Grounds’
Grade III Col. E. R. Bradley Handicap for older horses over the
Stall-Wilson turf course, the 20th anniversary edition of the
$125,000 Silverbulletday Stakes for 3-year-old fillies on the main track and the 66th running of the
$100,000 Louisiana Handicap for older horses over the main track are also to be contested as part of the gala
Road to the Derby Kickoff Day Presented by Hotel Monteleone Jan. 21, with the
$75,000 F. W. Gaudin Memorial Stakes at six furlongs and the grassy
$75,000 Pan Zareta Stakes at about 5 1/2 furlongs over the Stall-Wilson turf course complete Saturday’s stakes sextet.
The Silverbulletday Stakes is the first leg of Fair Grounds’ sophomore filly series that is continues with the
Grade III Rachel Alexandra Stakes on Louisiana Derby Preview Day Presented by Lamarque Ford
on Feb. 25 and concludes with the
Grade II Fair Grounds Oaks on March 31, penultimate day of the
New Orleans’ Thoroughbred season.
The grass-contested Col. Bradley is followed by the
Grade III Fair Grounds Handicap Feb. 25 and concludes with the
Grade II Mervin Muniz Memorial Handicap
on April 1, while the Louisiana Handicap is followed by the
Grade III Mineshaft Handicap Feb. 25 and ends with the
Grade II New Orleans Handicap on
Louisiana Derby Day April 1, Closing Day of the season.