Fox Hill Farm's Rockport Harbor, making his second start of the year, is the horse to beat in Sunday's field of eight for the $150,000 Razorback Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. III) featuring older horses going 1 1/16 miles at Oaklawn Park.
Trained by John Servis, the 4-year-old Rockport Harbor drew the outside post and will be ridden by Stewart Elliott. Considered a serious Triple Crown threat at this time last year, the gray son of Unbridled's Song
is on the comeback trail after suffering through a troubled 2005 season. He took the first step impressively, winning the Essex Handicap (gr. III) in front-running style Feb. 11.
Rockport Harbor has won five of his seven starts, but had his career interrupted by a severe foot injury last year and took a lengthy vacation from late April until this year to allow the injury to heal. Servis has always been high on his flashy colt and hopes to make the Razorback a good measuring stick for the colt's readiness to try the $500,000 Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II) April 8.
"Rocky" won the 1 1/16-mile Essex by 2 1/4 lengths over Thunder Mission, who returns in the Razorback. A couple of other colts who expected to fare better in the Essex – Greater Good and Real Dandy – return in the Razorback as well.
Greater Good, who has not won since taking the Rebel in a powerful finish to upset Rockport Harbor nearly a year ago for trainer Bob Holthus, finished fifth in the Essex. Real Dandy, winner of the West Virginia and Zia Park derbies last year for Bob and Cathy Zollars, came home seventh last month.
Also in Sunday's field is Purim, a grade III winner last season on the Arlington Park turf. Purim most recently ran second in a seven-furlong allowance race at Tampa Bay Feb. 11. The winner of the race, Sir Shackleton, set a track record of 1:22.28, finishing 1 1/4 lengths in front of Purim.$150,000 Razorback Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. III, Race 9, 5:11 p.m.), 4 & Up, 1 1/16 Miles
PP. Horse, Weight, Jockey
1. Real Dandy (KY), 116, Luis Quinonez
2. Arch Hall (ON), 115, James Graham
3. Prince T. (LA), 112, Guy Smith
4. Purim (KY), 115, Robby Albarado
5. Thunder Mission (KY), 114, Corey Lanerie
6. Greater Good (KY), 115, John McKee
7. Chippewa Trail (KY), 111, John Jacinto
8. Rockport Harbor (KY), 118, Stewart Elliott