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Vengeful Wildcat Makes Aqueduct Return

A pair of stakes winners returning off layoffs and a recent sharp allowance victor lead the field of 3-year-old sprinters entered in Saturday’s $65,000 Fred “Cappy” Capossela at Aqueduct Racetrack, one of four stakes on the Gotham Day card.

 

New Farm’s Vengeful Wildcat, winner of the Tyro at Monmouth Park in July, went to the sidelines after finishing a close second in that venue’s Grade 3 Sapling in September. After Vengeful Wildcat missed training time in the lead up to the January 8 Spectacular Bid at Gulfstream Park, trainer Ben Perkins, Jr. elected to have the colt make his return in the Capossela instead.

 

“He lost a shoe in the Sapling, which might have compromised him,” said Perkins. “We decided to give him a break and take him to Florida, but he got behind in his training and we ended up missing the Spectacular Bid. We didn’t want to bring him back at seven furlongs, but this race is six, so here we are.”

 

Vengeful Wildcat, who turned in nine workouts at Gulfstream from December 24-February 19, completed his preparations for the Capossela with a 36.06 breeze over the Belmont training track Wednesday morning, a workout Perkins described as a “nice blowout.”

 

Carlos Marquez will come to Aqueduct to ride Venegeful Wildcat, from post position 5.

 

The Capossela will be the first start on conventional dirt for Bobby Flay’s Sensational Slam, who is unraced since finishing ninth in the Grade 3 With Anticipation on turf at Saratoga Race Course in September. Previously, the son of Grand Slam posted narrow victories over Ontario-breds in the Clarendon and Vandal on Polytrack at Woodbine in July.

 

“We wanted to take advantage of Sensational Slam’s status as a Canadian-bred,” revealed trainer Todd Pletcher, who will also send out Another Silver Oak in the Capossela. “Starting him up there was easier than a maiden special at Saratoga. We were kind of looking for the right spot for him after those two and tried the turf, but that didn’t work out. He had a hind ankle injury after that, but he’s been training well for this. I am not sure six furlongs on the dirt is his forte, but it’s a starting place.”

 

Ramon Dominguez has the call aboard Sensational Slam, who drew post position 4.

 

Among those taking on the comebackers is Rift, a 2 ¾-length winner of an Aqueduct allowance on February 16. Previously, the Jay Em Ess Stable representative was third behind Fort Hughes and Royal Currier in the Jimmy Winkfield at the Big A on January 17.

 

“Fort Hughes was very impressive and the speed wasn’t coming back that day,” said Samantha Siegel, managing partner of Jay Em Ess Stable. “In the allowance race, it looked like he was going to finish third at one point before he kicked on to win. The Capossela is a little quick back, but he came out of the race in good shape and is doing well.”

 

Rift will leave from post 3 under Jose Valdivia, Jr.

 

The Capossela field also includes Diski Dance, second in the Dancing Count at Laurel on January 29.

 

The $65,000 Broadway for New York-bred female sprinters features a similar storyline as it will mark Mineralogist’s return to the races after winning the Maid of the Mist against 2-year-old statebred fillies on New York Showcase Day at Belmont Park in October 2009.  

 

Mineralogist, now 4, suffered multiple setbacks while on the comeback trail, according to her trainer, John Kimmel.

 

“What’s been going on with her? What hasn’t been going on with her?” Kimmel quipped last week. “After the Maid of the Mist, she had surgery on a knee, which was followed by a puncture wound on the same knee, which led to an infection in a lower joint and a long course of antibiotics.”

 

When picking a comeback race, Kimmel opted to have the Chester and Mary Broman homebred face New York-breds, even if it meant returning in a stakes.

 

“With a filly like her, the options were a two-other-than down here, or a state-bred stakes in New York,” said Kimmel.

 

Mineralogist drew post 4 and will be guided by David Cohen in the six-furlong dash.

 

While Mineralogist was sitting out the season, Meese Rocks won five of 10 starts in 2010, including the Iroquois on Showcase Day in October. In her four most recent starts, the daughter of Rock and Roll was second in the December 4 Garland of Roses, January 1 Interborough, and January 29 Correction, all at Aqueduct, and fourth in the Grade 2 Barbara Fritchie Handicap at Laurel Park on February 19.

 

“She didn’t run anywhere near the best of her ability in the Fritchie,” said Edward Barker, who trains Meese Rocks for Henry, Joseph, and Jamie Terranova. “The track was slippery in the jock’s opinion, and there were 40 mph winds. It’s a throw-out race. She also cut herself on the pastern and on the coronet bands, but two to three days after the race she was back to her old self. We had been thinking about giving her 60-90 days off, but I talked to the Terranovas and we decided to run her in the Broadway.”

 

Junior Alvarado will ride Meese Rocks from post 3.

 

From the rail out, Big Brownie, Lots of Stones, and Laylaben complete the field.

 

The field for the $65,000 Fred “Cappy” Capossela:

PP

Horse

Jockey

Wgt

Trainer

1

Diski Dance (KY)

A S Arroyo

116

C A Lynch

2

Another Silver Oak (KY)

V Santiago

116

T A Pletcher

3

Rift (MD)

J Valdivia, Jr.

116

R E Dutrow, Jr.

4

Sensational Slam (ON)

R A Dominguez

120

T A Pletcher

5

Vengeful Wildcat (KY)

C H Marquez, Jr.

120

B W Perkins, Jr.

 

The field for the $65,000 Broadway:

PP

Horse

Jockey

Wgt

Trainer

1

Big Brownie (NY)

E Castro

123

L Gyarmati

2

Lots of Stones (NY)

R A Dominguez

121

B N Levine

3

Meese Rocks (NY)

J Alvarado

123

E R Barker

4

Mineralogist (NY)

D Cohen

117

J C Kimmel

5

Laylaben (NY)

C H Velasquez

117

R E Schosberg

 

 

 

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