Despite making his season debut, multiple stakes winner Exhi figures to be well-backed in a short field entered for the $150,000 Ben Ali (gr. III) April 23 at Keeneland.
Only five older horses were drawn for the 1 1/8-mile Ben Ali, the
first of two graded stakes on Keeneland’s 10-race card. Post time is
scheduled for 4:18 p.m. EDT.
Wertheimer and Frere’s homebred Exhi
will likely draw favoritism in large part due to his success on
Polytrack. The 4-year-old Maria’s Mon colt won four consecutive races on
Polytrack last year, including the Coolmore Lexington Stakes (gr. II)
at Keeneland. He ended his sophomore campaign with a good second in the
Oct. 30 Greenbrier Fayette (gr. II) at Keeneland.
Trained by Todd Pletcher, Exhi
wintered at Palm Meadows Training Center in Florida before recently
being shipped to Kentucky. He worked five furlongs in a bullet :59
4/5 on a muddy Churchill Downs main track on April 17. Javier Castellano
will have the mount.