Lori and George Hall’s In the Rough and Alex Rankin and
partners’ Sea Road will get a final start in the South Florida sunshine at
Gulfstream Park Saturday when they go to the post as the probable favorites in
a field of nine 3-year-old fillies entered in the $50,000 Boynton Beach Stakes
at 7 ½ furlongs on turf before shipping to summer quarters in New Jersey and
New York, respectively.
Leading jockey Paco Lopez gets the call on In the Rough for
trainer Kelly Breen as she bids to bounce back from a seventh-place finish last
out in the nine-furlong Herecomesthebride Stakes (G3) after an impressive score
in the Coconut Grove Stakes over the course in her previous start.
“The distance of her last race was probably a factor,” said
Breen Thursday morning from Palm Meadows. “I think she’ll appreciate the
shorter trip Saturday. That will be it for us down here this season. On balance
it’s been a pretty good meet winning a couple of stakes,” referring to the
victory of the Halls’ other good 3-year-old filly Bickersons in the $150,000
Forward Gal Stakes (G2) on Jan. 31.
In the Rough is a daughter of Stormy Atlantic purchased for
$40,000 at the Eastern September yearling sales at Timonium and found her best
stride in her turf debut here early in the meet finishing second before the
Coconut Grove after winning one of four tries on the main track to begin her
Jockey Joe Bravo will ride Sea Road
for trainer Stan Hough as she makes her stakes debut in the Boynton Beach
after winning an allowance test over the course on Feb. 5 in her first and only
start this year. The homebred daughter of Tale of the Cat had previously broken
her maiden on turf at Aqueduct on Nov. 25 in her third career start.
DATTT Stable’s Dattt Echo finished a game third to In the
Rough in the Coconut Grove for trainer Mark Hennig, beaten only 1 ¼ lengths in
her first ever try on turf after winning two of seven on the main track,
and gets another chance in Saturday’s race with Jesus Castanon in the saddle.
Dattt Echo is a daughter of Stormy Atlantic as is In the Rough and was
purchased for $360,000 at the Keeneland September yearling sales.
Completing the field for the Boynton Beach are Aurora
Springs Farm’s Dreamed to Dream, E.T. Baird; Trade Winds Farm’s Mehndi,
Rosemary Homeister, Jr.; Hall E. Snowden, Jr.’s Bet On the Blue, Jermaine
Bridgmohan; Edward A. Seltzer’s Besitos, Edgar Perez; and LRK Stable’s
Worstcasescenario, Eduardo Nunez; Pinnacle Racing Stable’s Musical Romance,
Four in Lexington
at Keeneland Ran at Gulfstream
Led by upset winner Stately Victor, four 3-year-olds that
ran at Gulfstream Park earlier this season swept the first four places in the
$750,000 Blue Grass Stakes (G1) at Keeneland last Saturday, and four other
potential Kentucky Derby (G1) prospects that raced at Gulfstream this year will
line-up in the field of 12 drawn for this Saturday’s $325,000 Coolmore
Lexington Stakes (G2).
Harvey Clarke and Ron Winchell’s Krypton and Augustine
Stable’s Bushwhacked each ran twice at Gulfstream and then won a race over the
Polytrack surface at Keeneland since then for trainers Jonathan Sheppard and
Kiaran McLaughlin, respectively.
The other two in the Lexington
with Gulfstream experience are Gary and Mary West’s Call Shot and Casa Farms’
Prince Will I Am. A son of Tale of the Cat, Call Shot finished third in the
Dania Beach Stakes on turf and third in a main track allowance at Gulfstream in
his last two starts for trainer Wayne Catalano.
Prince Will I Am is a son of Victory Gallop trained by
Michelle Nihei. The colt will try Keeneland’s synthetic Polytrack surface after
finishing up the track in eighth behind Eskendereya in the Fasig-Tipton
Fountain of Youth Stakes (G2) last out at Gulfstream on Feb. 20 after a
respectable second-place effort behind Drosselmeyer in an allowance race.
There also will be a strong Gulfstream influence in
Saturday’s renewal of the $150,000 Distaff Handicap (G2) at Aqueduct with four
of the six fillies and mares entered in the race coming out of Gulfstream stakes.
Alex Rankin’s Tar Heel Mom and Windmill Manor Farm’s Thunders Dove finished
two-three in the Inside Information (G2) on Mar. 14 for trainers Stan Hough and
Nick Zito, respectively.
Peachtree Stable’s Matchless Orinda and West Point
Thoroughbreds’ Justwhistledixie finished second and fourth last out in the
Sabin Stakes (G3) on Feb. 27. Justwhistledixie will bid to regain the form that
saw her sweep the Davona Dale Stakes (G2) and Bonnie Miss Stakes (G2) at
Gulfstream early last year for trainer Kiaran McLaughlin. The daughter of Dixie
Union is trained this year by Bill Mott.
Three other fillies and mares with Gulfstream stakes
experience earlier this season are entered in stakes events this Saturday at
Hawthorne in Chicago
and Charles Town in West
Virginia. Trainer Marty
Wolfson has Farnsworth Stable’s Jessica Is Back and Team Valor’s Miss Singhsix
on the road this weekend. Jessica Is Back and Miss Singhsix are entered in the
$200,000 Sixty Sails Handicap (G3) at Hawthorne, and Jessica Is Back is also in
the $250,000 Sugar Maple Stakes Saturday night at Charles Town. Jessica Is Back
romped home a nine-length winner of the Ocala Stakes last out at Gulfstream
while Miss Singhsix finished third in the Rampart Stakes (G3) on Mar. 20.
Trainer Doug O’Neill shipped Flintridge Stable’s 4-year-old
filly Pinkarella from California
to win an allowance race at Gulfstream on Feb. 12 and left her here to finish
fifth last out in the Inside Information Stakes on Mar. 14. The daughter of
Malibu Moon was subsequently shipped to O’Neill’s division stabled at Philadelphia
and also is entered to run in the Sugar Maple at Charles Town.