Orchard Park looms the ultimate horse-to-beat in Friday's $75,000 added Gravelines Stakes, going 1 1/8 miles on the grass, for 3-year-olds because he's got the complete package working for him.
He's trained by Hall of Famer Bill Mott and ridden by Hall of Famer Jerry Bailey. And beyond those solid credentials, he's in the best form of his life, with three straight victories on turf, including a score in the Palm Beach (gr. IIIT) at the distance here last out.
Orchard Park kicked off his winning streak at Aqueduct last Nov. 16, when he broke his maiden in his fifth career start. He made his 3-year-old debut at Gulfstream Jan. 11, and left little doubt about his talent, winning by more than three lengths as the 6-5 favorite.
Giving challenge to Orchard Park will be Emergency Status and Worldly Victor.
Emergency Status ran into a world of trouble in the Palm Beach and ended up last in the field of 12. The son of Academy Award earned stakes brackets as a 2-year-old, taking the World Appeal Stakes on turf at The Meadowlands.
Worldly Victor became a stakes winner in the Dave Feldman Stakes, getting up late to score by 1 1/2 lengths over Charming Colony.
The others entered are: Charming Colony (Rene Douglass); Quick Talker (Manuel Aguilar); Bernie B (Aurelio Toribio Jr.); Nice Boy (Abel Castellano Jr.) and Susie's Poker (Jose Eibar)