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Willcox Inn, Winning Cause Headline Fayette

Millionaire Willcox Inn and Coolmore Lexington (G3) winner Winning Cause headline a field of nine horses entered Wednesday for Saturday’s 56th running of the $200,000 Hagyard Fayette (G2) at 1 1/8 miles on the main track.

The Hagyard Fayette will go as the ninth race on Saturday’s 10-race program with a 5:21 p.m. (ET) post time.

Owned by Lael Stables and All In Stable, Willcox Inn topped the $1 million mark with his third-place finish behind Silver Max and Wise Dan in the Shadwell Turf Mile (G1) that was moved to the main track on Oct. 5. Trained by Mike Stidham, Willcox Inn won the Washington Park Handicap (G3) on Polytrack at Arlington Park in his start prior to the Shadwell.

Regular rider James Graham has the call Saturday on Willcox Inn, who will break from post position seven.

Alto Racing’s Winning Cause has won three of four starts on the main track at Keeneland with his lone setback coming in the six-furlong Stoll Keenon Ogden Phoenix (G3) when he broke from post position 12.

The only 3-year-old in the field, Winning Cause will be trying to become the 11th 3-year-old to win the Fayette, which was inaugurated in 1959. The most recent 3-year-old to win the race was Blame in 2009.

Joe Rocco Jr. has the mount on Winning Cause, who will break from post position nine.

The field for the Hagyard Fayette, from the rail out, is as follows: Villandry (Jesus Castanon, 121 pounds), You Know I Know (Eddie Castro, 121), Set the Sail (Shaun Bridgmohan, 121), Nikki’s Sandcastle (Leandro Goncalves, 121), Ol Army (Miguel Mena, 121), Finnegans Wake (Robby Albarado, 121), Willcox Inn (Graham, 121), Lea (Brian Hernandez Jr., 121), Winning Cause (Rocco Jr., 118).

 

 

 

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Richard Sherman’s Nikki’s Sandcastle, runner-up to Newsdad in last year’s Fayette (G2), worked three furlongs in :37.20 after the morning renovation break in preparation for Saturday’s race.

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