Saturday’s feature at Monmouth is the $60,000 Omnibus Stakes for
fillies and mares. It’s an 11-furlong marathon on the grass, and the
objective is very clear
for all eight runners – earn “black type.”
The broodmares who command the most attention in
sales catalogs have all won or placed in stakes. Their accomplishments
are noted by the use of bold-face
type for wins or placing in stakes races, and that it’s that ‘black
type’ that enhances their value.
Trainer Todd Pletcher will send out the only filly
in the race who has won at the distance in Gary L. Chervenell’s
Seanchai. The 4-year-old chestnut miss
won an optional claiming event at Gulfstream
Park in January, her last victory.
She also has a license to run well at Monmouth, since her sire is
English Channel, who won the Breeders’ Cup Turf here in 2007 and was named champion turf horse.
Last out, on July 4, Seanchai finished fourth in an
optional claimer at one mile on grass at Monmouth, but that was her
first start in four months and she
raced like a horse who needed the outing.
“She’s been training okay on the dirt,” said Anthony
Sciametta, who trains the Pletcher horses at Monmouth. “She’s been very
steady, but doesn’t really show
her best breezing on the main track.”
Seanchai has 12 lifetime starts, all on grass. She
finished second in the Hilltop at Pimlico and an overnight stakes at
Delaware last year, and this year
was fourth in the Grade 3 The Very One in February and sixth in the
Grade 3 Orchid in March, both at Gulfstream. Now she needs a black type
“That’s why she’s in here,” Sciametta said, “to give her a chance to win a stakes.”
The filly’s best races have come on or near the
pace, and Sciametta says Seanchai will likely be prominent early in the
"The farther she goes, the closer to the pace she’ll be,” he said.
In her Gulfstream victory, the filly made all the
running and was still going strong at the end to win by three and a half
Chris DeCarlo, who rode for the first time last out, has the mount again on Saturday.
All of the runners in the Omnibus will be looking
for that elusive first stakes victory. Vicki Oliver, once a Monmouth
regular who now stables in
Kentucky, shipped up Rare Event for a try at black type.
Graham Motion is sending an English-bred filly,
Valiant Girl, to take a shot, and Christophe Clement also has an
English-bred runner in Tabreed, who owns
a victory on the Monmouth turf and demands respect with Joe Bravo
Parranda is another course winner – she won the race
when Seanchai was fourth – and Explainable is back on grass after
running third in an off-the-turf stakes
at Delaware last out.
The field is completed by a pair of fillies shipping in from
Thicket would benefit if the race comes off the turf, since she’s a
dedicated main track runner at Penn National. Christmas Angel, whose
only lifetime win came on grass, ships in
from Parx after a third on the synthetic track at Presque Isle.
MONMOUTH MALL SIDEWALK
SALE ON-TRACK THIS SATURDAY
Monmouth Mall, located just two miles from Monmouth
Park Racetrack, will host a sidewalk sale on the first floor of the
Grandstand this Saturday.
Accompanied by a Gymboree fashion show, the sidewalk
sale will run from 12 to 5 p.m. on Saturday with vendors set up across
the first floor of the main building.
The fashion show is slated to begin just after the conclusion of race 4
on the card – approximately 2:15 p.m.
Gates open Saturday at 11:00 a.m., with first post set for 12:50 p.m.
BBQ & CRAFT BEER FESTIVAL TO HIGHLIGHT LABOR DAY WEEKEND
Park will host a BBQ & Craft Beer Festival to celebrate the Labor Day weekend on Saturday, Aug. 31, and Sunday, Sept. 1.
The top area chefs will vie for the People’s Choice
Award as best BBQ, and several boutique breweries will offer tastings of
their craft beers.
MONMOUTH OFFERS FOUR DAYS OF RACING ON
To celebrate Labor Day,
Park will offer four days of racing next
weekend. The track will run live cards on Friday and Saturday, Aug.
30-31, and then on Sunday and Monday, Sept. 1 and 2.
Five stakes races will highlight the racing programs
on Labor Day weekend. On Saturday, 3-year-olds will compete in the
$60,000 Miss Woodford on the main
track, and the $60,000 Twin Lights on the turf.
The 2-year-olds come out to play on Sunday, with the
running of the $100,000 Sapling Stakes (G3) for the boys and the
$100,000 Sorority Stakes for the fillies.
Monday’s Labor Day program will be headlined by the $75,000 Icecapade Stakes.