Stronach Stables' Hunters Bay, whose three-race win streak was broken when he stepped into grade I company last out, is the moderate 3-1 morning line choice in an oversubscribed edition of the Presque Isle Mile Sept. 7 at Presque Isle Downs.
Contested over the Tapeta all-weather surface at the Erie, Penn. oval, the $250,000 Mile drew a field of 14. With the starting lineup limited to 12, two will be on the also-eligible list to draw in if any scratches occur.
Hunters Bay, who will be ridden by Emma-Jayne Wilson and carries top weight of 124 pounds from post two, was coming off victories in the May 26 Eclipse Stakes (Can-III) going 1 1/16 miles and the 1 1/4-mile Dominion Day Stakes (Can-III) July 1 at Woodbine before shipping to Saratoga Race Course for a seventh-place effort in the Whitney Invitational (gr. I), won by Fort Larned. The 4-year-old Ghostzapper colt has won six of his dozen career starts, with earnings of $403,407.
The 7-2 second choice in the Mile is Eternal Rule, a lightly raced 4-year-old trained by Sid Attard for owner-breeder Don Myers. The Ontario-bred gelded son of Tribal Rule won his only start as a 2-year-old and was first in both of his 2011 efforts, including a victory in the Achievement Stakes at Woodbine.
Eternal Rule won an optional allowance at Woodbine before extending his win streak to five in as many career starts with a 2 1/4-length triumph as the favorite in the Karl Boyes Memorial Stakes at Presque Isle June 20. Eternal Rule was handed his first career loss when he returned to Woodbine and finished a facile second, by a head, to Essence Hit Man in the July 18 Bold Venture Stakes (Can-III).
Five-time Eclipse Award-winning trainer Todd Pletcher has entered Alma d'Oro, a 6-year-old owned by Mary Ellen and Robert Bourque who has won or placed in 20 of his 31 career starts. The multiple stakes-winning son of Medaglia d'Oro has placed in 10 stakes to go along with his four stakes triumphs and has been on the board in five of six 2012 efforts. Alma d'Oro last saw the winner's circle when victorious in the R. R. M. Carpenter, Jr., Memorial Stakes at Delaware Park in July 2011. He'll have the services of Javier Castellano from the 10 post.
Bergerac, who will be ridden by Ramon Dominguez from the eight hole and is listed at 5-1 on the morning line, rallied along the rail but the effort came up short when third in the Bold Venture last out. The 5-year-old gelded son of Rahy was second in the Commonwealth Stakes (gr. II) at Keneeland in his first start after being claimed for $80,000 by trainer Chad Brown for owner Paul Pompa Jr.
Previously raced by his breeder, Courtlandt Farm, Bergerac was fourth as the favorite in the Jaipur Stakes (gr. IIIT) on the Belmont Park Widener turf course June 8 previous to the Bold Venture. From 21, starts, Bergerac has recorded four wins and 10 placings.
$250,000 Presque Isle Mile Stakes (Race 6, 7:30 p.m. EDT) 3YOs & Up, One Mile (All Weather Track)
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer, ML Odds
1. Jimmy Simms (KY), R. Maragh, 113, S M Asmussen, 6-1
2. Hunters Bay (KY), E. Wilson, 124, R Baker, 3-1
3. Hurricane Ike (FL), M.G. Pino, 113, J D Thornbury, 15-1
4. Bartletts (KY), H. Vega, 119, M A Ferraro, 20-1
5. Plutonium (KY), D.L. Parker, 113, J C Englehart, 20-1
6. Shellback (PA), W. Martinez, 122, G S Bennett, 12-1
7. Eternal Rule (ON), J.M. Campbell, 116, S C Attard, 7-2
8. Bergerac (KY), R.A. Dominguez, 113, C C Brown, 5-1
9. Ponzi Scheme (KY), E. Trujillo, 116, J Serey, 8-1
10. Alma d'Oro (KY), J. Castellano, 113, T A Pletcher, 4-1
11. I'm Steppin' It Up (FL), R.D. Allen, Jr., 119, A Pecoraro, 10-1
12. Brujo de Olleros (BRZ), J.R. Leparoux, 113, H G Motion, 8-1
13. Bluedacious (KY), P Morales, 110, T E Hamm, 15-1
14. Photo Shoot (KY), S Spieth, 113, J Cheeks, 12-1