Eclipse Finalist Barbosa Back Following Trip to South Florida
Special Noon Post Time for Saturday’s Nine-Race Program
LAUREL, MD – Multiple graded-stakes placed Doppelganger, unraced since last summer, will launch his comeback Friday running first time for new connections when live racing returns to Laurel Park.
Post time for the first of nine races is 12:25 p.m.
SF Racing, Starlight Racing, Madaket Stables, Robert Masterson, Jay Schoenfarber, Waves Edge Capital, Catherine Donovan, Golconda Stable and Siena Farm’s Doppelganger drew Post 5 in a field of eight for the open older horse allowance going about 1 1/16 miles.
Purchased as a yearling for $570,000, Doppelganger, originally trained by Hall of Famer Bob Baffert, was second in the San Felipe (G2) and fourth in the Arkansas Derby (G1) last year before jumping off the Triple Crown trail, later running third in the Affirmed (G3) at Santa Anita.
Trained now by Brittany Russell, Doppelganger will be making his first start since finishing fourth last July in the Los Alamitos Derby. He’s favored at even money on the morning line.
Also in the field is David Scott Haney Jr.’s Romp, claimed out of his previous start last September for $25,000 by trainer Carlos Mancilla. Romp finished third in the 2021 Sir Barton at historic Pimlico Race Course when trained by Hall of Famer Shug McGaughey.
Laurel’s winter meet-leading jockey, 19-year-old apprentice Jeiron Barbosa, is named in seven of nine races Friday. Barbosa returns from South Florida, where he rode twice at Gulfstream Park and attended the 52nd Eclipse Awards ceremony at The Breakers in Palm Beach, where he was a finalist for champion apprentice of 2022.
Barbosa finished fourth Wednesday on Gypsy Kitten and third aboard Breezy Connection Thursday, both horses trained and co-owned by Gerald Brooks. Barbosa is tops in the Laurel rider standings with 17 wins and $612,860 in purse earnings at the winter meet which began Jan. 1.
On Friday, Laurel will offer full-card advance wagering on Saturday’s Pegasus World Cup program from Gulfstream Park, which begins at 10:50 a.m. Laurel will open its doors at 10:30 a.m. Saturday and have a special early noon post for the first of its 10 live races.
The $3 million Pegasus World Cup (G1) presented by Baccarat will go off as Race 13 at Gulfstream with an approximate 5:40 p.m. posts. It is preceded by the $1 million Pegasus World Cup Turf (G1) presented by Qatar Racing in Race 12 (4:40 p.m. post) and $500,000 TAA Pegasus Filly & Mare Turf (G3) presented by Pepsi in Race 11 (4:06 p.m. post).