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Ten 3 Year-Olds Expected In Saturday's Frank Whiteley Stakes
LAUREL, MD. 01-17-12---Hope spring eternal for 10 budding three-year olds in Saturday’s seven furlong, $125,000 Frank Whiteley, Jr. Stakes at Laurel Park.
Graham Motion trains Heat Press (3-1), who broke his maiden by 14 widening lengths in his most recent start at Laurel on December 8 to earn an 83 Beyer speed figure. The Malibu Moon colt has worked three times at the Fair Hill Training Center since that score and regains the services of Jeremy Rose, who was aboard for his maiden debut.
Ore Pass (4-1) carries the hopes of Harry and Tom Meyerhoff for trainer Mike Trombetta. The War Pass colt was an impressive debut winner at Laurel on November 24, then disappointed at Parx Racing as the 3-5 favorite in an allowance test earlier this month. Julian Pimentel retains the mount.
“I really don’t know what happened last time,” Pimentel said. “It was disappointing because we think he is a nice horse. When he won first time out, he did it so easy. He was pretty impressive that day. He broke out front and kept running (winning by 10-3/4 lengths). I don’t think he has to be on the lead to be successful Saturday, we’ll just see how the race develops. It looks like a wide-open race but if he runs the way he did first time out, he is going to be tough.”
Speedy Patrick S (5-1) left the maiden ranks in his most recent try, carrying Steward Elliott to a 4-1/2 length victory at Parx. Frankie Pennington will ride the son of Put It Back, who has been first or second three times in four career starts, for trainer Guadalupe Preciado.
Alpha Mike Foxtrot (6-1) had to check four times but still got up to win the Maryland Juvenile Championship under Forest Boyce for trainer Richard Small on December 29. The Two Punch gelding also posted a second in the Maryland Million Nursery and a third in the James Lewis. Boyce retains the mount.
Lunar Rock (8-1) has finished in the money eight times in nine career starts, including third place finishes in the Maryland Million Nursery and the Laurel Futurity although he finished last year with a sixth place effort in the Maryland Juvenile Championship. Dale Capuano will give Sheldon Russell a leg up on the Cherokee’s Boy gelding.
Keep The Canoli (8-1) has stakes experience but has sat on the shelf since late November. He finished fourth in the Dover Stakes in October but was no factor in his next start, the Remsen Stakes (G2) at Aqueduct. Greg Sacco will employ Chris DeCarlo for the first time.
In The Fairway (10-1) is four-for-five at Charles Town, with victories in two restricted stakes and as the overwhelming favorite in the Tri State Futurity. Erick Rodriguez will handle the son of Posse for trainer Jeff Runco.
Saint Arbor (12-1) won an allowance race by 20-½ lengths at Mountaineer Park in late November before a sixth place finish in the Turfway Park Prevue. T.D. Houghton accompanies the Louis Ruberto trainee to Maryland.
Hanky Doodle (15-1) finished second in his last three starts, including the Maryland Juvenile Championship and Tri State Futurity. The Gary Capuano trainee broke his maiden at Laurel on September 12 before his string of runner-up finishes.
Twelve Stone (20-1) left the maiden ranks in his last race here on December 27 with a driving victory for trainer Ben Perkins. Abel Castellano will ride the son of Macho Uno.
RUSSELL RIDES THREE WINNERS, MOVES INTO TOP SPOT IN JOCKEY STANDINGS
Sheldon Russell rode three winners on Thursday afternoon to move into first place in the Laurel Park jockey standings. The 25-year-old visited the winners’ circle with Warrior James ($3,80-1st), Never Stop Looking ($5.60-6th) and Keg ($4.80-7th). Russell now has 11 victories, two more than apprentice Trevor McCarthy.
About Laurel Park
Laurel Park is a Stronach Group company, North America’s leading Thoroughbred racetrack owner/operator. The Stronach Group racetracks include Santa Anita Park, Gulfstream Park & Casino, Golden Gate Fields, Portland Meadows, Laurel Park and Pimlico Race Course, home of the world-famous Preakness. The company owns and operates the Palm Meadows Training Center in Florida and is one of North America's top race horse breeders through its award-winning Adena Springs operation. The Stronach Group is one of the world's largest suppliers of pari-mutuel wagering systems, technologies and services. Its companies include AmTote, a global leader in wagering technology; Xpressbet, an Internet and telephone account wagering service; and Monarch Content Management, which acts as a simulcast purchase and sales agent of horseracing content for numerous North American racetracks and wagering outlets. The Stronach Group is also a major producer of televised horse racing programming through its HRTV cable and satellite network and is North America's premier supplier of virtual online horse racing games, as well as a leading producer of social media content for the horseracing industry.