Photo: Jim McCue, Maryland Jockey Club
Last March, Ribo Bobo
was claimed for $6,250 out of a Gulfstream
victory by trainer Jason Servis for Mr. Amore Stable. He won six of his
seven subsequent outings for that operation and made a triumphant return
to Florida last out as the odds-on favorite in the Claiming Crown
Express Stakes on December 7.
Come Saturday, Ribo Bobo will attempt to complete his transformation in the $150,000 Sunshine Millions Sprint.
“He’s been doing great,” Servis said. “I’m taking it race by race with him. I just try to stay out of his way.”
Ribo Bobo’s winning streak included wins in the Icecapade Stakes at
Monmouth on September 2 and the Maryland Million Sprint on October 19.
The son of Louis Quatorze usually leads at every call, but Servis said
his charge is tractable.
“He can run any way; he can come from off the pace, like when he won
the stakes at Monmouth, or he can be on the lead,” Servis pointed out.
“There’s no pressure for him to run a certain way. He’s in good
Paco Lopez, who has ridden the gelding in his last
two outings, will be in the irons once again on Saturday.
Star Harbour finished fifth in the Sunshine Millions Sprint 12 months
ago, but was offered for $35,000 at Saratoga on August 29 and has
proven to be an excellent claim. After finishing third to the ill-fated
Caixa Eletronica in Belmont’s Duck Dance Stakes on October 6, the bay
horse defeated Jackson Bend and Bahamian Squall in the Sunshine State
Stakes at Gulfstream on December 8. Trainer Bobby Dibona originally
intended to await this contest, but called an audible to run Star
Harbour in the Mr. Prospector Stakes (G3) on December 28. After setting a
contested pace, Star Harbour couldn’t withstand Singanothersong and
Fort Loudon, and wound up third as the 6-5 favorite.
“I’ve got to give the winner a lot of credit, because he looks like
he’s going to be a nice horse,” Dibona said. “The track was a little
funny and it was drying out a bit. But he ran big. We’ll just have to
see if we can turn it around. We’re back on short rest and changing the
plans a little bit. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn’t. I don’t
have any regrets trying the [Mr. Prospector]. I thought he ran
Star Harbour has been a bit of a project for Dibona.
“He has bad feet, so we pay a lot of attention to that,” Dibona
continued. “He used to run in bar shoes. He also has maybe a lighter
regimen than he was accustomed to.”
Star Harbour will be ridden by Joel Rosario for the first time in the
Sprint. He will break from post seven.
Trainer Stanley Gold
has entered a pair of Jacks or Better Farm homebreds in the six-furlong
Sprint. Grande Shores drew post two and will be piloted by Edgard
Zayas, while Fort Loudon has the five hole and jockey Jeffrey
Black Diamond Cat and Apriority finished fourth and sixth,
respectively, in the Mr. Prospector. Edgar Prado will have the mount on
Black Diamond Cat, while Luis Saez will take back the reins on
The Sprint field is completed by Happy My Way, Bear Tough Tiger and Close It Out.
My Pal Chrisy Returns To Sprint With Sweet N Discreet
The $150,000 Filly & Mare Sprint at six furlongs drew a field of
seven including Sweet N Discreet, who was cross-entered in the $300,000
Distaff by 10-time defending Gulfstream meet champion trainer Todd
A 4-year-old daughter of Discreet Cat, Sweet N Discreet had her two
race win streak snapped in her last start, the $100,000 Ocala at
Gulfstream on Dec. 29, which marked her stakes debut. In that race, she
took the lead after six furlongs and carried it into the stretch before
tiring to second, beaten two lengths.
My Pal Chrisy, who finished third in the Ocala a head behind Sweet N
Discreet, returns to sprints where the 6-year-old mare has won five of
nine career starts at six furlongs, and is 3-for-10 at Gulfstream
including back-to-back wins in the Musical Romance and Sunshine Millions
Distaff Preview last fall.
Ullapool has won three straight races dating back to an entry-level
allowance at Belmont Park in September 2012. She has started just twice
since, going gate to wire to win an optional claiming allowance at
Belmont on Oct. 17 and the Garland of Roses at Aqueduct on Dec.
Classic Point, trained by Hall of Famer Allen Jerkens, is 3-for-9
lifetime at six furlongs. Beaten a neck in the Honorable Miss (G2), she
was fifth by two lengths in the Ballerina (G1), both last summer at