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Pletcher Runners Target Big A Stakes Races

Trainer Todd Pletcher appears to have a busy bi-coastal weekend coming up with a handful of horses targeting the opening weekend stakes at Aqueduct as well as a full contingent for the Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita Park.

 

Queen’splatekitten, 2 ¾-length winner of an optional claimer on October 11, is scheduled to return to stakes company in the Grade 2, $200,000 Red Smith on Saturday at 1 3/8 miles on the turf. The optional claimer was the first win of the year for the 4-year-old Kitten’s Joy colt, who this summer was second and third in the Oceanport and Red Bank stakes, both Grade 3 events at Monmouth Park.

 

Next Sunday, Pletcher likely will have 2-year-old fillies Kimono, most recently third in the Blue Hen at Delaware Park, and Unabashed, fourth behind winner Kauai Katie in the Grade 2 Matron, going a mile in the Grade 3, $150,000 Tempted.

 

Likely to meet Kimono, who worked a half-mile in 49.82 on Saturday, and Unabashed, who went the same distance in 48.29, are recent maiden winners Cue the Moon and Emollient as well as My Happy Face and Toasting, the second- and third-place finishers behind Dreaming of Julia in the Grade 1 Frizette. The Tony Dutrow-trained Swinger’s Party is questionable, according to NYRA stakes coordinator Andrew Byrnes.

 

The Pletcher-trained juveniles Darwin, a wire-to-wire winner of his debut on October 6, and Violence, also victorious in his only start, are targeting the Grade 2, $200,000 Nashua at a mile on the same card as the Tempted.

 

“Both Nashua candidates worked very well on Saturday,” said Pletcher’s assistant, Whit Beckman, referring to Violence’s bullet five-furlong move in 1:00.68 on the training track, over which Darwin traveled the same distance in 1:00.69. “They’re both on track for the fourth of November.”

 

Beckman reported that Pletcher’s Belmont-based Breeders’ Cup hopefuls also emerged from their Saturday preparations in good order, and are ready to ship to California when the weather permits.

 

“We’re still scheduled to ship them all out,” said Beckman of Shanghai Bobby (Juvenile), Dreaming of Julia (Juvenile Fillies), Turbulent Descent (Filly & Mare Sprint) and Kauai Katie (Juvenile Fillies or Juvenile Sprint). “My understanding is the flight may be pushed back from Tuesday to Wednesday. But all in all, it doesn’t really hurt us.”

 

 

 

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