'Knocking on the door,' Diamond King to give turf a try

August 12, 2019 04:22pm
'Knocking on the door,' Diamond King to give turf a try
Photo: Lauren King/Gulfstream Park

After Diamond King returned a winner on March 22 in Gulfstream Park, successfully taking his 4-year-old under Jose Ortiz, the jockey said, “I think we have a good one here.”

And Ortiz has largely been proven right as the son of Quality Road, best known for competing in the 2018 Preakness Stakes, has gone on to hit the board in a trio of graded stakes races since then.

“He’s knocking on the door,” said trainer John Servis, who on Wednesday is planning to work the D. J. Stable, Cash is King and LC Racing runner over the Monmouth Park turf. If all goes well, Diamond King could run for the first time on the grass in the Sept. 1 Red Bank Stakes (G3).

“We’ve given him enough time, and I think the flat mile really hits him right in the head,” Servis said. “I figured, you know what, the only race that’s really there is the turf. Why not try it?

“If it moves him up a little bit, he’s solid.”

After that allowance optional claiming score, Diamond King ran second in the Charles Town Classic (G2), second in the Salvator Mile (G3) and third in the Philip H. Iselin Stakes (G3).

That makes one start every 30 or so days for four months.

“His last race I was a little disappointed with,” Servis said, “but he had run hard his previous two races and maybe just wasn’t quite up to par for that.”

Three breezes have ensued since the Iselin on June 22.

Overall, Diamond King, a former $235,000 purchase who won stakes races at ages 2 and 3, is 5-3-3 in 14 career starts with earnings surpassing $600,000. Since the Preakness, he has run exclusively in graded company aside from the kickoff to his career as an older horse.


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