(Edited press release)
Dual-Classic winner Big Brown tops a list of 35 nominations for the Monmouth Stakes, a mile and an eighth turf test to be contested at Monmouth Park Sept. 13.
Trained by Richard Dutrow Jr., Big Brown will be making just his second career start on turf in the Monmouth Stakes, having broken his maiden on the grass at Saratoga in his debut Sept. 3, 2007. Following that maiden score, a majority interest in the colt by Boundary from the Nureyev mare Mien was purchased by IEAH Stables.
Big Brown made his second start March 5, 2008, scoring in an off the turf entry-level allowance contest at Gulfstream Park. He followed that up with a five-length win in the Florida Derby (gr. I) and then his dominating victory in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I). After taking the Preakness (gr. I), Big Brown’s bid for the Triple Crown fell short when he was eased nearing the quarter pole in the Belmont Stakes. He bounced back from that effort with a nearly two-length score in the Haskell Invitational (gr. I) Aug. 3.
Stabled at Aqueduct, Big Brown sports a trio of workouts since his Haskell score, most recently breezing six furlongs on firm turf Sept. 3 in 1:15 3/5.
As part of the condition of the race, the $200,000 purse will increase to $500,000 should Big Brown start in the event.
The nominations, excluding late mail, for the Monmouth Stakes are:
Ballonenostrikes; Operation Red Dawn; Barcola; Out of Control; Big Brown; Pleasant Strike; Call My Bluff; Proudinsky; Distorted Reality; R J’s Brigade; Dr Rico; Red Rocks; Drum Major; Ruff and Ready; Fagedaboudit Sal; Salinja; Get Serious; Saratoga Saint; Hotstufanthensome; Shake the Bank; Hunting Print; Shakis; Icy Atlantic; Silver Tree; Independent George; Star Plus; Kiss the Kid; Victory Alleged; Little Dovefeather; War Monger; Minister’s Joy; Wesley; Nergal; Xela; Nightscape