Flintshire Looking Strong for Sword Dancer
Photo: Skip Dickstein
Flintshire winning the Bowling Green Stakes

Flintshire   is looking to make it 2-for-2 in the $1 million Longines Sword Dancer Stakes (gr. IT) Aug. 27 at Saratoga Race Course.

Juddmonte Farm's homebred turf juggernaut will be making his 16th lifetime start in a graded/group stakes in the Sword Dancer, one of six grade I stakes on the Travers day card. Flintshire won this race by a commanding 2 1/2 lengths last year, his largest winning margin since he won his first group stakes—the group III Prix du Lys Longines—by three lengths June 16, 2013, at Chantilly.

The 6-year-old son of Dansili—Dance Routine, by Sadler's Wells, is trained by Chad Brown and will leave from post 6 carrying 124 pounds under Javier Castellano.

"With a horse like Flintshire, we're not trying to reinvent the wheel," said Brown. "By the time the horse had come over to us, he had made almost $8 million, so I'm not going to change anything with the horse. He's settled in nicely and, fortunately, he's taken to our program like the class horse he is. He came to us in outstanding condition from Andre Fabre. He had been managed by both Mr. Fabre and Juddmonte so well, that's why we have a horse at age 6 that's still at the top of his game."

Out of 21 starts, Flintshire has won seven times, finished second 10 times, and was third once. He comes into the Sword Dancer off consecutive wins in the Manhattan Stakes (gr. IT) at Belmont Park and the July 30 Bowling Green Stakes (gr. IIT) at Saratoga. 

Grand Tito and Twilight Eclipse, who were second and third in the Bowling Green, respectively, will be taking another shot at Flintshire.

Grand Tito, also 6, is owned by Grupo Seven C Racing and trained by Gustavo Delgado. The grade II-winning son of Candy Ride has won twice this year, taking a $100,000 allowance race at Gulfstream Park before taking the MacDiarmida Stakes (gr. IIT) by 1 1/4 lengths. Grand Tito will be ridden by Jose Ortiz.

Twilight Eclipse, a grade I winner last year, is looking to improve his standing in stakes company this year. Owned by West Point Thoroughbreds, the 7-year-old son of Purim has placed in two stakes out of five starts this year, finishing third in the Belmont Gold Cup Invitational Stakes. Twilight Eclipse is trained by Tom Albertrani and will be ridden by John Velazquez.

"Apart from Flintshire, it's the same group that we've been running with," Albertrani said. "The horse has got it in him, so we decided to take our chances. It's a small field and for a million dollars we just feel it's worth it."

The Sword Dancer, a "Win and You're In" qualifier for the Breeders' Cup Longines Turf (gr. IT) on Nov. 5 at Santa Anita Park.

Longines Sword Dancer S. (G1)

Saratoga Race Course, Saturday, August 27, 2016, Race 10
  • 1 1/2m
  • Inner turf
  • $1,000,000
  • 3 yo's & up
  • 4:49 PM (local)
PPHorseJockeyWgtTrainerM/L
11Grand Tito (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateJose L. Ortiz120Gustavo Delgado8/1
22Money Multiplier (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateIrad Ortiz, Jr.116Chad C. Brown8/1
33Roman Approval (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateFlorent Geroux116Michael J. Maker20/1
44Twilight Eclipse (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateJohn R. Velazquez122Thomas Albertrani10/1
55Inordinate (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateAaron T. Gryder116Chad C. Brown30/1
66Flintshire (GB)Javier Castellano124Chad C. Brown1/5
77Applicator (KY)Leonel Reyes108Mikhail Yanakov30/1

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