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Gantry Gets Jaipur Class Test

Gantry, who established a course record when winning an optional claimer three weeks ago, will face stakes competition for the first time when he competes in Saturday’s Grade 3, $100,000 Jaipur, the final graded stakes of the Belmont Park spring/summer meet.

 

Placed on the shelf following a 3 ¾-length maiden triumph on dirt at Parx Racing in November 2010, Gantry made his return and turf debut a winning one, needing only a hand-ride to prevail by 3 ½ lengths on June 23. The final time of 1:06.87 improved the previous six-furlong inner-turf course record by 0.17 seconds.


“I wasn’t looking for a track record, but he had worked very on turf well at Palm Meadows [in 2010],” said Mike Hushion, who trains Gantry for Black Swan Stable. “His female family is turfy, so we thought he’d run well.”


While Gantry is eligible for the second allowance condition, Hushion believes the Jaipur, which will be contested at seven furlongs on the Widener turf course, is the right spot to test the 4-year-old gelded son of Pulpit against stakes competition.


“A two-other-than [allowance] in Saratoga isn’t an easy race, either,” noted Hushion.


Mike Luzzi will ride Gantry, the 2-1 morning-line favorite, from post position 6.


In the Jaipur, trainer Christophe Clement will send out a pair of stakes winners in Right One and Nordic Truce.


Ghislaine Head’s Right One, a two-time victor in France, won his first two starts in the United States, taking a Gulfstream Park optional claimer on April 1 and capturing the Island Sun overnight stakes at Belmont on May 12. Stepped up in class for the Grade 3, one-mile Poker on June 10, Right One finished third behind Courageous Cat, who returned to win the Grade 1 Shoemaker Mile, and lone front-runner Yield Bogey.


“He had a great race in an overnight stakes: strong pace, was out of it, and finished very well,” said Clement. “And then the [Poker] was a completely different scenario. He was bit further back than he should have been. We got beat by Courageous Cat who just came back and won a Grade 1, so it was not a bad race. I just think with a little more racing luck he could have finished second.”


Right One, the 5-2 second choice on the morning line, drew post position 7. Javier Castellano, who enters the final week of racing at the Belmont spring/summer meet two wins behind leading jockey Ramon Dominguez, has the call.


Ammerland Stud’s Nordic Truce, who seeks his first stakes victory since taking the 2010 Grade 3 Transylvania at Keeneland, opened his 2011 campaign with two starts in optional claimers around two turns at Gulfstream Park, finishing sixth on February 26 and prevailing by a neck on April 22. Returning to stakes company for the Grade 2, six furlong Highlander at Woodbine on June 26, Nordic Truce finished ninth after stumbling on the turn and closing ground in the stretch.


“He ran very well at Gulfstream,” said Clement. “He came back in a sprint at Woodbine. It was a waste of a race. He was scared of something on the turn – he jumped it. I don’t know why. He came back in great shape. This should be an ideal distance.”


Jean-Luc Samyn will ride Nordic Truce, 6-1 on the morning line, from post 4.


Evolutionist, who won a minor stakes at the Fair Grounds in 2009, will make his second start off an 18-month sabbatical in the Jaipur, having finished fourth in a 1 1/16-mile optional claimer at Belmont on June 16. Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott is hopeful the Kinsman Stable homebred will run an improved race on Saturday as he cuts back in distance.


“He’s had a race coming off the long layoff,” said Mott. “He got a conditioner out of it. The race was at a mile-and-a-sixteenth and he seems better at a flat mile or less. I think it was one of those things where we just felt we needed to run. It had been a long time on the shelf and we had a chance to get a race into him.”


Eddie Castro has the assignment aboard Evolutionist, 10-1 on the morning line, from post 5.


Radiohead, victorious in the 2009 Group 2 Norfolk at Royal Asco , will on Saturday attempt to pick up his first stakes score in the United States. Trained by Rick Dutrow for Pegasus Holding Group and IEAH Stables, the 4-year-old has made two starts in 2011, winning a May 18 Belmont optional claimer on dirt and finishing third in the June 18 Parx Dash Handicap on turf.


Cornelio Velasquez will ride Radiohead, tabbed at 5-1 on the morning line, from post 3.


The Jaipur field also includes Targhee Pass, who annexed a May 25 starter allowance at Belmont, and Yield Bogey, who was second in last year’s Jaipur and in his most recent start, the Grade 3 Poker. D’ Funnybone and Spa City Fever were entered for the main track only.


The field for the Grade 3, $100,000 Jaipur:


PP

Horse

Jockey

Wgt

Trainer

Odds

1

Targhee Pass (FL)

J Sanchez

118

H A Jerkens

20-1

2

Nordic Truce (KY)

J Samyn

122

C Clement

6-1

3

Radiohead (GB)

C H Velasquez

118

R E Dutrow, Jr.

5-1

4

Yield Bogey (KY)

J F Chavez

118

P J Kelly

5-1

5

Evolutionist (KY)

E Castro

118

W I Mott

10-1

6

Gantry (KY)

M J Luzzi

118

M E Hushion

2-1

7

Right One (FR)

J Castellano

118

C Clement

5-2

8

D' Funnybone (FL) (MTO)

No rider

122

R E Dutrow, Jr.

8-5

9

Spa City Fever (NY) (MTO)

J F Chavez

118

P J Kelly

4-1

 

 

 

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