Presious Passion is back at Monmouth Park
and ready to defend his title in the Monmouth Stakes on turf this Saturday.
While the crowd will likely see the same old “Presious” style - go to the front
and try to improve from there - the race will have two new additions this year,
a Grade 3 status and a purse boost from $200,000 to $250,000.
Marking just its third renewal, the Monmouth Stakes was captured in 2008 by
champion Big Brown. Last year, Presious Passion used the Monmouth Stakes as a
springboard to victory in the Grade 1 United Nations. Trainer Mary Hartmann has
indicated that Presious will be looking to do just that again this year.
After scoring Grade 1 wins on both coasts last year, Presious Passion headed
into the Breeders’ Cup Turf where he fought gamely to the wire, coming up just
a half-length short of Conduit.
Following a win in Gulfstream’s Mac Diarmada (G2) earlier this year, Presious
Passion took his front-running show on the road, shipping halfway around the
world to Dubai.
With a well-watered turf course under his feet, Presious did make the early
lead, only to fade in the stretch. The Monmouth Stakes will be his first start
since returning from the Emirate.
While he’s not likely to find company on the front-end early, Presious Passion
will have plenty of competition looking to run him down late in the Monmouth
Stakes. Among the competitors are graded stakes winners Get Serious, Baletti,
Al Khali and Blues Street.
The field for the mile and eighth Monmouth Stakes, from the rail out with rider
1. Get Serious (Pablo Fragoso)
2. Baletti (Cornelio Velasquez)
3. Forgotten Dynasty (Eddie Castro)
4. Dynamoor (C. H. Marquez Jr.)
5. Pleasant Strike (Chris DeCarlo)
6. Presious Passion (Elvis Trujillo)
7. Al Khali (Mike Luzzi)
8. Blues Street (David Cohen)
9. Roman Tiger (Joe Bravo)