After sweeping last weekend’s juvenile graded stakes at Belmont Park,
trainer Todd Pletcher will attempt to add to his stakes stockpile in Saturday's Grade 1,
$400,000 Foxwoods Champagne.
Pletcher entered Shanghai Bobby, Archwarrior, and Micromanage in the Foxwoods
Champagne, a one-mile race for 2-year-olds. The Champagne is a Breeders’ Cup
“Win and You’re In” race.
Starlight Racing’s Shanghai Bobby is unbeaten in three starts and
owns victories at all three NYRA tracks. After debuting a four-length winner in
April at Aqueduct Racetrack, Shanghai Bobby posted a one-length score in the
Track Barron overnight stakes in June at Belmont
and enters Saturday’s race off a 3 ¾-length triumph in the Grade 2 Three
Chimneys Hopeful on September 3 at Saratoga Race Course.
The speedy colt showed a new dimension in the Three Chimneys Hopeful
when he settled in fourth early before launching a bid with three furlongs to
“We were encouraged with the way he rated in the Hopeful,”
said Pletcher, who on Saturday won the Grade 2 Futurity with Overanalyze and
the Grade 2 Matron with Kauai Katie. “Even though he was close to the
pace, he was able to let horses go in front of him and seemed to settle pretty
well. The fact he successfully got seven furlongs and wasn’t desperate
doing it was a good indication that a one-turn mile should be well within his
Rose Napravnik has the return assignment aboard Shanghai Bobby, who drew
post position 2 as the 3-1 co-second choice on the morning line.
Archwarrior was backed at 1-4 in his only start to date, and the Alto
Racing representative battled for the early lead and opened up under a hand
ride in the stretch to deliver a 3 ¼-length decision in 6 ½-furlong maiden
special weight on August 30 at Saratoga.
“He’s a big, strong colt who has shown us a lot of ability
in the mornings, and I thought he backed it up with a good, solid effort in his
debut,” said Pletcher. “I liked the way he finished the race and
the way he galloped out, and he’s trained well since then. It’s an ambitious
move, but it’s a move we think that fits his schedule based off what
Hall of Famer John Velazquez will ride Archwarrior, the 5-2
morning-line favorite, from post 4.
Mike Repole’s Micromanage also comes off an eye-catching debut
win, a five-length romp in a seven-furlong event on September 1 at the Spa.
“We were expecting him to run well, but he actually exceeded our
expectations,” said Pletcher. “We thought he ran very well. Not
only did he run well, but it seemed like he moved forward for having run the
race. He’s trained even better since then and has grown and filled out. He’s
really developing the way you want to see them do it this time of year.”
Micromanage, 5-1 on the morning line, drew the outside post in the
field of seven. Joel Rosario has the call.
Fortify tracked the pace along the inside in the Three Chimneys Hopeful
and stayed on well to finish second. The Godolphin Racing homebred drew post 5
for the Foxwoods Champagne, and trainer Kiaran McLaughlin hopes the outside
post will help the colt turn the tables on Shanghai Bobby.
“He was back there a little along the inside [in the Three
Chimneys Hopeful] and ended up taking some dirt,” said McLaughlin.
“He took the worst of it while Shanghai Bobby and Rosie were in the
clear. It was good for him education-wise. I was hoping he’d draw outside,
and that he’ll have a cleaner trip this time.”
Fortify, who prevailed by 5 ½ lengths on August 4 at Saratoga in his
only other start, was installed at 6-1 on the morning line. Ramon Dominguez
will ride Fortify for the first time.
From the rail out, the Foxwoods Champagne field includes Goldencents, a
dominant debut winner at Del Mar; Chief Havoc, a maiden who has placed in a
pair of starts in England, and Bern Identity, third in the Three Chimneys
Hopeful after winning the Grade 2 Sanford in July.