With Bellamy Road opting for the $1-million Travers Stakes (gr. I) on the same card, Harry Aleo's unbeaten Lost in the Fog looks to be an overwhelming favorite, once again, when he faces six opponents in Saturday's seven-furlong King's Bishop Stakes (gr. I).
The son of Lost Soldier
, unbeaten in eight career starts, will carry topweight of 123 pounds and concede from two to six pounds to the rest of the field.
Lost in the Fog is coming off a 7 1/4-length victory in the Carry Back Stakes (gr. II) at Calder, which is just above his 6 3/4-length average winning margin. Of his eight victories, seven have come in stakes, at six different tracks.
Trainer Greg Gilchrist said recently Lost in the Fog has been working in bar shoes, after a quarter crack was discovered on his left hind hoof following the Carry Back. He added, however, that the colt would not wear them in the King's Bishop.
"I could leave the bar shoe on, but the foot looks really good," Gilchrist said. "It doesn't concern me."
Gilchrist said Lost in the Fog's strength not only is his sensational speed, but his ability to put horses away early in the race.
"If any horse tries to go with him, he'll wear them into the ground," Gilchrist said. "His best attribute is his strong second quarter. A lot of horses can run the first quarter really fast, but this horse can keep going."
Lost in the Fog will break from post three under regular rider Russell Baze, who has been on the colt for every race except one, when he was injured.
Now comes the big question: Can anyone beat Lost in the Fog?
One colt with credentials is Millennium Farms' Santana Strings, who is coming off a victory in the six-furlong Amsterdam Stakes (gr. II) at Saratoga Aug. 7, in which he held off the late charging Social Probation by three-quarters of a length. The latter, trained by Carl Nafzger, also has been entered in the King's Bishop and should appreciate the extra furlong.
Santana Strings, trained by Steve Asmussen, previously had captured the six-furlong Alysheba Stakes at Lone Star Park July 2, running the six furlongs in 1:08 2/5. Eibar Coa will be aboard the son of Wheaton
, while Calvin Borel will ride Social Probation.
Bob Baffert, who saddles Roman Ruler in the Travers, will send out Fusaichi Rock Star, winner of the seven-furlong San Vicente Stakes (gr. II) back on Feb. 13. In his return to the races, he finished sixth in an optional claimer at Del Mar July 31.
One horse coming off a huge effort is Better Than Bonds, a classy 2-year-old last year who is just now returning to form. In his last start July 30, he captured a seven furlong allowance race at Saratoga by four lengths in 1:23 2/5 over a dull track. Richard Migliore, who finished second aboard the son of Sweetsouthernsaint
in last year's Cowdin Stakes, was named to ride by trainer Bob Reinacher.
Perhaps the classiest of Lost in the Fog's rivals is Overbrook Farm's Storm Surge, who has competed in 10 consecutive stakes, winning the Lecomte and Sugar Bowl at Fair Grounds and the Lone Star Juvenile. Trained by Dallas Stewart, he also was third in the Louisiana Derby (gr. II), Coolmore Lexington Stakes (gr. II), and Risen Star Stakes (gr. III). In his last start, he was fourth in the Amsterdam.
Rounding out the field is the undefeated and lightly raced New York-bred The Daddy, who is coming off a 12-length romp in a state-bred allowance race at Saratoga Aug. 13.
King's Bishop field:
PP. HORSE TRAINER JOCKEY WT.
1. Fusaichi Rock Star Bob Baffert John Velazquez 121
2. Social Probation Carl Nafzger Calvin Borel 117
3. Lost in the Fog Greg Gilchrist Russ Baez 123
4. The Daddy Salvador Gonzalez Robby Albarado 117
5. Santana Strings Steve Asmussen Eibar Coa 121
6. Storm Surge Dallas Stewart Raphael Bejarano 119
7. Better Than Bonds Robert Reinacher Richard Migliore 119