|HAVANA (Dunkirk - Missy
Turtle, by Kyle's Our Man) Even though he was the favorite in the B.C. Juvie,
I didn’t have much faith in Havana. He surprised me by fighting it out with
Strong Mandate through much of the race and still sticking around to out-game
that rival. Although he was
practically staggering down the stretch, I have a feeling that if this colt
knew that New Year’s Day was cutting up the rail, Havana would have somehow
found a little extra. Havana has a ton
of early speed and draws the rail, a perfect position for his running style
over the Gulfstream drag strip. Brush
up on yourEspañol,
‘cause this guy will say adios to the field. Contender.
T-Pletch, Havana was last seen losing the G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile in the
final strides out at Santa Anita. I have to give this handsome son of Dunkirk
major brownie points for closing stalking a brisk pace and still sticking
around to run a solid 2nd in the end. Wide nearly the entire trip
from his far outside post 13, I believe he could have held of New Year’s
Day’s late run if he hadn’t lost so much ground. Pletcher trainees win at a
20% clip when off 61-180 days, so the layoff should not be an issue. His
works have been nice, and he doesn’t need to win this to move forward.
Furthermore, a win wouldn’t amount to much here anyway other than to pad
stats as there are no Derby points available for this 7 furlong sprint.
CAN'T STOP THE
(Montbrook - Halo Reality, by Prospector's Halo) is 2-2 at Gulfstream. On
paper, he has the speed to run with Havana. Can't Stop the Kid has some class. He’s a half to a stakes
placed runner and a half sister bore Dwyer winner Teeth of the Dog. Plus, the
dam is a stakes winner. The colt’s
Bris speed figures have improved in every start and he’s fired back-to-back
bullets. If Havana’s cigar fails to
light, Can't Stop the Kid might not be caught. Contender.
worse than 3rd in 6 career starts, Can’t Stop the Kid has run on
nearly every surface available: turf, dirt, sloppy dirt and wet-fast
synthetics. His two career wins have come over the runway strip that is
Gulfstream’s main track, making it pretty obvious that is his preferred
stomping grounds. He has never been favored by the betting public, and I see
him being outclassed for the top spots here. Could fill out the exotics.
|NO NAY NEVER (Scat Daddy -
Cat's Eye Witness, by Elusive Quality) is one very fast colt. Have you seen
his race times? 1:09 on soft turf.
Really nice works, too. That being said… No Nay Never has a pedigree that is
pretty varied. Less than half (about 40%) of his sire’s offspring like dirt.
On the other hand, his dam won over turf and dirt as did his second dam. So here’s what we know: No Nay Never’s dirt
works have been spectacular. He doesn’t like to rate, and may be part of a
torrid pace. He hasn’t raced since
last August and has never run past six furlongs. Trainer Wesley Ward is 20% with runners
making their first start after 90+ days.
I may regret it, but I’m saying No. Nay. Not this time.
NO NAY NEVER—Globetrotting No Nay Never has yet to do
a thing wrong in his short racing career. He owns wins in three countries,
including Group wins in England and France. The only blemish on his otherwise
spotless résumé, at least for this race, is that he has
never raced on traditional dirt. Despite that, however, his morning works at
Gulfstream have been stellar, though we won’t know for sure how that will
translate to afternoons until once the dust has settled. If he runs to his
dirt breeding, No Nay Never will be a heavy favorite to stay undefeated.
PRUDHOE BAY (Songandaprayer
- Cameron Crazies, by Lion Heart) can let the speed crazies duel. He’s
content to track them and take over in the stretch. Draw a line through his
second race when he raced a mile. He made a good early effort but it was two
furlongs too far. Prudhoe Bay‘s running style and pedigree indicate that
seven furlongs is within his scope. His dam owns the only blacktype in two
generations. Prudhoe Bay owns the highest late pace speed figure in the field
at 103, however, that race was over synthetic. I think he’s in a bit tough
|PRUDHOE BAY—Trained by
Edward Plesa, Jr., Prudhoe Bay owns wins on dirt and all-weather surfaces. He
won his maiden at first asking before running into Coup de Grace in a 1 mile
NW1X optional claimer. Dam Cameron Crazies had the privilege of racing against
the great Rachel Alexandra, but unlike that mare, Cameron did not seem to
want any part of anything other than sprint distances. Maybe…if the price is
|SPOT (Pulpit - Quiet
Summernight, by Quiet American) tried to make headway in the Hutcheson Stakes,
but this was a weird race for him. His jock didn’t take advantage of post one
to put Spot into position, instead, he dropped back and took the colt to the
outside, where Spot wound up three and four wide. Fast forward and Spot gets a jockey switch
to Lezcano, who will likely give the colt a better ride. Spot has a couple of
strong works and deserves a do-over. He’ll probably be overlooked and could
offer some value to the exotics. Run, Spot, run! Exotics.
SPOT—A half to stakes winner Quiet All
American, Spot showed marked improvement when switching to dirt for the first
time in his 4th career start. After his 8 ½ length romp in that
maiden race at Hawthorne, trainer Nick Zito placed him in graded stakes
company for the first time in the G3 Hutcheson Stakes here at Gulfstream a
month ago. The gray son of Pulpit then put in a very even effort to finish 5th,
beaten 8 lengths by winner Wildcat Red. Second place finisher C. Zee came
back to be an also ran behind that same winner in the G2 Fountain of Youth
last weekend. I’m not sure he belongs in this spot.
BROTHERSOFTHETIME (Bob and John -
Hostility, by Devil His Due) is half to a stakes placed runner and their dam
is a stakes winner. Yes, Ashley, his sire won the Wood Memorial, but he was a
better runner than he is a stallion.
With four crops of racing age, Bob and John has seven stakes winners
(4%), none graded. Brothersofthetime is a nice colt but I agree with you that
he’s over his withers in here. Toss.
|BROTHERSOFTHETIME—Anyone a fan of
2006 G1 Wood Memorial winner Bob and John? If so, then you’re going to like
this colt. A winner of 3 of 5 lifetime thus far, Brothersofthetime is a
stakes winner by virtue of his Seacliff Stakes score at Calder. Therein lies
my big issue with his chances here. Four of his five starts have been at
Calder, but the one time he shipped to Gulfstream, he did come away a winner.
I doubt that he could duplicate that score against the likes of Havana and No
Nay Never, but he presents a good betting opportunity.
|BREITLING FLYER (Ghostzapper -
Starbuster, by Housebuster) has finished out of the money only once in his
six race career. I don’t think it’s a matter of his being able to keep up,
Ashley, since he owns the second
highest late pace speed figure (100),
but I do think that Breitling Flyer prefers running with another horse
and isn’t dominant enough to win.
Breitling Flyer has a nice pedigree. He’s a half to multiple stakes
winner Hesa Big Star and to a stakes placed runner. His second dam is a half
to the great Alydar, who played second fiddle to Affirmed. I’m not dismissing Breitling Flyer, I think
he can place third or fourth and make someone’s day in an otherwise chalky
race. Exotic play.
BREITLING FLYER—Another Calder shipper, Breitling
Flyer has just his debut win to his credit despite being competitive in
stakes races over at Calder. He has a pair of runner-up efforts over
Gulfstream’s main track, but if he can’t keep up at Calder, then I seriously
question his ability to do so at Gulfstream.