Giuseppe the Great in good order for Travers presented by NYRA Bets
August 24, 2017 01:42pm

Grade 2 Jim Dandy runner-up Giuseppe the Great is in good order for the Travers presented by NYRA Bets according to Hall of Fame trainer Nick Zito. The colt by Lookin At Lucky received some gate training and a gallop on Wednesday morning, and galloped Thursday morning in preparation to run against the strongest group he's faced thus far.

The colt's progression, and his adversaries during Saturday's 1 ¼-mile race have the 69-year-old trainer and part-time racing historian excited about Saturday's contest.

"If he finishes out the week he has had, I'm happy. He's solid," Zito said. "It's amazing the type of field you've got in there. I don't ever remember a Travers this deep as far as credentials. I don't know if they're Secretariat-type horses or Arrogate-type horses, but the interesting thing is, I don't think you are going to get a race where there is a Derby winner, there is a Preakness winner, there is a Belmont winner, there is a Haskell winner, there is Baffert horse, Jim Dandy winner, it goes on and on, a horse that won the Blue Grass.

"To me, it's the best race I have ever seen where the credentials are actually true... At the end of the day, it's all true. It would be a great race to win, great to have a horse that is that consistent to pull off an upset in a place like this.... This could be one of the biggest in my opinion," he added.

For Zito, who has sent 28 starters postward in the Travers, highlighted by winning with Birdstone for Marylou Whitney in 2004, Giuseppe the Great could have the potential to pull off one of his biggest achievements in his career.

"I start thinking about goofy things, like winning something like this and pulling this upset and beating all those horses. I am grateful to be in this with a consistent horse. I have to talk to my young jockey [Tyler Gaffalione] because I believe this horse is going to be there again Saturday. He is that consistent."

As for Giuseppe the Great's name, it was chosen by Mossarosa's owner, Nena Moss. The Austin, Texas based businesswoman has a favorite Italian restaurant she visits when she comes east to New York. The name was picked in honor of the Long Island-based restaurant's owner, Joe, which in Italian is Giuseppe.

"It's called Umbertos," Zito said. "The original one in New Hyde Park, been there since 1968, the best one, still, I'll tell you a good story. When Eli Manning won the Super Bowl, he had pizzas delivered from that Umberto's, look it up. She loves it. All the famous restaurants in Manhattan she could go to, she goes to that one."

Source: NYRA Communications


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