Fioretti shoots to become second repeat Thoroughbred Club of America winner
Two Hearts Farm and Don Janes’ Fioretti will attempt to join Excitable Lady (1982-1983) as the only repeat winner of the Thoroughbred Club of America (G2) when she faces seven opponents Saturday in the 36th running of the $250,000 main track sprint at six furlongs.
The TCA, a “Win and You’re In” challenge race for the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint (G1) at Santa Anita on Nov. 5, will go as the sixth race on Saturday’s 10-race program with a 4 p.m. ET post time. First post time Saturday is 1:05 p.m.
Trained by Anthony Hamilton Jr., Fioretti won the Open Mind at Churchill Downs on Sept. 17 for her first victory since last fall’s TCA. Sophie Doyle has the mount Saturday and will break from post position six.
In addition to Fioretti, the TCA drew five other graded stakes winners.
Grade 2 winners in the field include Sarah Sis, winner of last fall’s Lexus Raven Run here, Spelling Again and Stonetastic plus Grade 3 winners I’m a Looker and Irish Jasper.
The field for the Thoroughbred Club of America with riders and weights from the inside is: Irish Jasper (Julien Leparoux, 120 pounds), Stonetastic (Paco Lopez, 122), Meshell (Shaun Bridgmohan, 120), Sarah Sis (Jose Valdivia Jr., 122), Bendable (Jose Ortiz, 118), Fioretti (Doyle, 120), I’m a Looker (Robby Albarado, 120) and Spelling Again (Luis Saez, 122).
Millionaire Undrafted goes for Turf Sprint sweep in Woodford
Wes Welker and Sheep Pond Partners’ millionaire Undrafted will face 11 rivals in Saturday’s 20th running of the $150,000 Woodford (G3) Presented by Keeneland Select.
The Woodford, a 5½-furlong sprint on the grass, will go as the fifth race on Saturday’s 10-race program with a 3:25 p.m. ET post time.
Trained by Wesley Ward, Undrafted won the Shakertown (G2) here in the spring. A victory Saturday would make him the third horse to sweep the Shakertown and Woodford in the same year. The others are Havelock (2013) and Silver Timber (2010).
Undrafted, fourth in the Kentucky Downs Turf Sprint in his most recent start, will break from post position nine and be ridden by Joe Bravo.
The Woodford also marks the U.S. return to racing of Mongolian Stable’s Mongolian Saturday, winner of last fall’s Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (G1) here.
Trained by Enebish Ganbat, Mongolian Saturday failed to hit the board in two starts at Sha Tin in Hong Kong as well as in starts at Royal Ascot and Newmarket. All of those races were Group I events with his most recent start coming July 9.
Second in the Woodford last year in a race that was moved to the muddy main track, Mongolian Saturday has been stabled at Arlington Park, where he worked a bullet three furlongs in :33.20 on Friday in preparation for his Keeneland return.
Carlos Montalvo has the mount on Mongolian Saturday, who will break from the outside post position 12 in the Woodford. The outside post was no problem in the Breeders’ Cup as Mongolian Saturday won from Post 14.
The field for the Woodford Presented by Keeneland Select with riders and weights from the inside is: Bucchero (Marcelino Pedroza Jr., 120 pounds), Mongol Bull (Corey Lanerie, 120), Almasty (Luis Saez, 120), Big Rock (Jose Ortiz, 120), Shogood (Robby Albarado, 118), Front Pocket Money (Ricardo Santana Jr., 118), Hogy (Shaun Bridgmohan, 120), Alsvid (Channing Hill, 120), Undrafted (Bravo, 124), Galton (Paco Lopez, 120), Mosler (Jose Lezcano, 120) and Mongolian Saturday (Carlos Montalvo, 120).Also-eligible: Holding Gold (Julien Leparoux, 118) and Condominium (Ricardo Santana Jr., 118).
A.P. Indian is the “now” horse for Friday’s Stoll Keenon Ogden Phoenix
A year ago, the buzz surrounding the now Grade 2 Stoll Keenon Ogden was the return to Keeneland of 2014 champion sprinterWork All Week and the new kid on the block in Runhappy. Also in the field of 11 was Green Lantern Stable’s homebred A.P.Indian who finished sixth as a 16-1 shot in the sloppy conditions.
That was then and this is now. The “now” horse for Friday’s Stoll Keenon Ogden Phoenix is A.P. Indian.
With a spot in the $1.5 million TwinSpires Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1) at Santa Anita on Nov. 5 already secured by virtue of his victory in the Forego (G1), A.P. Indian brings a five-race win streak into this year’s running of the $250,000 stakes at six furlongs on the main track.
“He is sounder this year,” trainer Arnaud Delacour said of the difference from 2015 to 2016. “He had a few setbacks last year and we could not train him properly.”
The Stoll Keenon Ogden Phoenix was the final start of 2015 for A.P. Indian, who has not lost since.
“He was not 100 percent here last year,” Delacour said. “He had beaten horses that Runhappy had beaten and with the weather, it was not a true indication of his ability.”
A.P. Indian was entered in last Saturday’s Vosburgh (G1) at Belmont Park but never made the trip from his home base at the Fair Hill Training Center in Maryland.
“We made the call the night before,” Delacour said of skipping the race, which was run over a sealed, muddy track. “I did not think the track would dry out and it didn’t.”
A.P. Indian arrived at Keeneland Tuesday morning and Wednesday morning he galloped on the main track shortly after 7 o’clock.
His stay at Keeneland will be brief as Delacour plans to take A.P. Indian back to Fair Hill before shipping to Santa Anita.
Speedy Stonetastic returns to Keeneland for Saturday’s Thoroughbred Club of America
Stoneway Farm’s Stonetastic, a two-time Grade 2 winner, made her first appearance on Keeneland’s main track Wednesday morning since she finished eighth in last year’s Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint (G1).
“She got here last night after vanning down from Monmouth Park,” trainer Kelly Breen said after Stonetastic completed a once-around jog shortly after 6 a.m.
Stonetastic is here for Saturday’s $250,000 Thoroughbred Club of America (G2), a six-furlong sprint on dirt. She was third in the race in 2014.
The TCA will mark Stonetastic’s first start since winning the Regret at Monmouth on July 30.
“The break was a little bit by design,” Breen said. “I was trying to get the right race for her. I was not 100 percent sure we were coming here until last week. I had looked at Belmont (to possibly run Stonetastic in the Grade 2, 6½-furlong Gallant Bloom last Saturday).”
The TCA is a “Win and You’re In” challenge race for the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint to be run Nov. 5 at Santa Anita.
“I am just taking it one race at a time,” Breen said about Stonetastic’s schedule “I am not prepping for anything. I am only looking at this race. She is doing good and looking good, and I am hoping for a good performance.”
In the 2014 Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint at Santa Anita, Stonetastic finished fourth as the co-favorite with winner Judy theBeauty.
Paco Lopez will ride Stonetastic in the TCA.
Godolphin Racing’s Innovative Idea worked a half-mile in :48.60 over a fast track before the Wednesday morning renovation break for trainer Eoin Harty. Third in the Locust Grove (G3) in her most recent start, Innovative Idea posted fractions of :24.80 and :48.60 and galloped out five furlongs in 1:03.20. Innovative Idea, winner of the Groupie Doll (G3) at Ellis Park in August, is expected to be entered Thursday for Sunday’s Juddmonte Spinster (G1).
Jose Ortiz named on nine horses on Friday’s Opening Day
On Friday, opening day of Keeneland’s 2016 Fall Meet, fans will note the appearance of leading New York jockey Jose Ortiz. He is named on horses in nine of the 10 races, including two stakes contenders trained by Ben Colebrook: Edward A. Seltzer and Beverly S. Anderson’s Caroline Test in the Darley Alcibiades (G1) and Katherine G. Ball’s Limousine Liberal in the Stoll Keenon Ogden Phoenix (G2).
Ortiz has ridden at Keeneland only eight times. During the 2015 Breeders’ Cup World Championships at Keeneland, he and La Verdad finished second to Wavell Avenue in the TwinSpires Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint (G1).
Ortiz and his year-older brother and frequent riding rival, Irad Ortiz Jr., are from Puerto Rico, where they graduated from the Escuela Vocacional Hipica jockey school. Their grandfather and an uncle also were jockeys.
Irad Ortiz moved to New York in 2011, and Jose began riding at Parx a year later. Jose soon relocated to New York and won with his first mount, Corofin, in March 2012 at Aqueduct. He has earned multiple riding titles at New York Racing Association tracks and this year has ridden Grade 1 winners Ectot (GB) (Joe Hirsch Turf Classic), Off the Tracks (Mother Goose) and Practical Joke (Hopeful).
To date in 2016, Jose and Irad are North America’s respective second- and third-leading jockeys by earnings behind Javier Castellano. Jose won 65 races during the 2016 Saratoga meet to lead all riders by victories. Irad and Jose ranked second and third, respectively, behind Castellano on the list of Saratoga’s leading riders by earnings.
Keeneland patrons will be able to meet Jose Ortiz on Saturday during a question-and-answer session in the Paddock that begins at 12:05 p.m. ET. The event is part of the family-friendly Sunrise Trackside activities that start at 7 a.m.