Ray's the Bar (GB) Part of Strong Pair for Chad Brown in $100,000 Dania Beach
Category : News
Thu 31/12/2015 - 20:15 EST
On Saturday at Gulfstream Park, the featured race is the $100,000 Dania Beach Stakes. A Grade 3 event restricted to three-year-olds, it will be contested at seven and a half furlongs on the turf and has drawn a field of ten colts and geldings.
Ray’s the Bar (GB) headlines the competitive field as the morning line favorite at odds of 3-1 and is one of two horses for trainer Chad Brown. A dark bay son of Exceed and Excel (AUS), he broke his maiden at first asking at Royal Ascot and made his stateside debut with a third-place finish in the Pilgrim Stakes (G3). He was eleventh last-time out in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1) and will have Javier Castellano aboard from post position nine.
Mountain Music Man looking for first graded stakes win
Second choice at 7-2 on the morning line is Mountain Music Man for trainer Todd Pletcher. Bred in New York, the bay son of Bluegrass Cat cost $450,000 as a two-year-old and has won two of his three starts. He broke his maiden in his career debut and followed that up with a win in the Awad Stakes at Belmont Park. He was third in the Pulpit Stakes last time out. John Velazquez will be aboard and they will break from post position two.
Isotherm trying to rebound after Breeders' Cup
Also in the field at morning line odds of 6-1 is Isotherm for trainer George Weaver. A dark bay son of Lonhro (AUS), he has won two of his four starts and will be trying to earn the second graded stakes win of his career. Prior to finishing thirteenth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1), he won the Pilgrim Stakes (G3). Luis Saez will be in the irons and they will break from the inside post as he tries to return to winning form.
There will always be Kentucky Derby entrants that would be much better suited to skip the race entirely and find a better spot if not for the gusto of their well-meaning owners, but the Road to the Derby point qualifying system has been remarkably efficient at making the race more of a level-playing field since its inception four years ago.
On Saturday at Keeneland, the featured race is the $250,000 Dixiana Elkhorn Stakes. Scheduled to be run at one mile on the turf, the Grade 2 event has drawn a field of eight colts and geldings.
With a largely underwhelming, and thus far, slow, group of three year-olds set to contest the 2016 Kentucky Derby, logical handicappers searching for a pick outside of the undefeated and likely highly-favored Nyquist may have already begun the hand-wringing process.
On Friday at Oaklawn Park, the featured race is the $600,000 Apple Blossom Stakes. Restricted to fillies and mares, the Grade 1 event will be contested at a mile and a sixteenth on the main track and has drawn a field of six.