Pin Oak Stable's Equal Opportunity, recent winner of the Awad Stakes at Arlington Park, is the 3-1 morning-line favorite for Saturday's $150,000 Arlington Classic (gr. IIIT).
The race, presented by Woodford Reserve, is for 3-year-olds at 1 1/16 miles on the turf. It serves as the first leg of the track's Mid-America Triple. The series continues with the $250,000 American Derby (gr. IIT), presented by Jack Daniel's, on July 22, and concludes with the $400,000 Secretariat Stakes (gr. IT) on Aug. 12.
A son of Rahy
, Equal Opportunity invaded from his Kentucky base to win the one-mile Awad Stakes over this course on June 3. Dispatched as the 4-5 favorite, the Bill Mott trainee rallied from off the pace, took command in the stretch and drew off for a decisive 2 ¾-length victory. Eddie Martin Jr. has a return call aboard the chestnut colt on Saturday.
Also coming from Kentucky is Mike McCarty's Storm Treasure. The son of Storm Boot
finished third in the Jefferson Cup (gr. IIT) at Churchill Downs in his turf debut June 17. Trained by Steve Asmussen, Storm Treasure ran 11th in the year's Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), after finishing second in the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) at Keeneland. Shaun Bridgmohan, Arlington's leading rider from 2005, will be making his first appearance of the current season aboard Storm Treasure.
Gary A. Tanaka's German-bred colt Proudinsky will be making his North American debut after making his two previous starts in his native country where he was second in a listed stakes last time out. Brice Blanc gets the call aboard the son of 2001 Arlington Million winner Silvano for trainer Mario Hofer.
Team Block's Creative Force, champion Illinois 2-year-old of 2005, looks to make it two straight over the Arlington grass after winning a second-level allowance over this course in May. In his only other turf start, the Chris Block-trained son of Red Ransom
broke slowly and finished 10th in the Hallandale Beach Stakes at Gulfstream Park in February. Eduardo Perez has been named to ride.$150,000 Arlington Classic Stakes (gr. IIIT, Race 8, 4:32 p.m.), 3-Year-Olds, 1 1/16 Miles (Turf)
PP. Horse, Jockey, ML Odds
1. Kingship (KY), Robby Albarado, 8/1
2. Arbuckle Bandit (KY), Carlos H. Marquez, Jr., 12/1
3. Equal Opportunity (KY), Eddie M. Martin, Jr., 3/1
4. Creative Force (IL), Eduardo E. Perez, 6/1
5. Icy Ridge (IRE), Larry J. Sterling, Jr., 8/1
6. Desert Wheat (LA), Christopher A. Emigh, 6/1
7. Storm Treasure (KY), Shaun Bridgmohan, 7/2
8. Proudinsky (GER), Brice Blanc, 4/1Each assigned 119 pounds.