This Ones for Phil embarks on what trainer Rick Dutrow Jr. hopes is a superlative campaign in the national sprint division in 2010 as the likely choice in the Kenny Noe Jr. Handicap (gr. III) at Calder Race Course and Casino Dec. 26.
John Velazquez will be aboard This Ones for Phil in a field of 10 for the seven-furlong main track test, one of three graded stakes on the Calder program.
This Ones for Phil won the Sunshine Millions Dash and Swale Stakes (gr. II) earlier in the year at Gulfstream Park to establish a national reputation. Paul Pompa, Jr. and partners’ 3-year-old gelding should feel right at home at Calder, where he was developed in 2008 through a campaign of eight juvenile starts by trainer Kathleen O’Connell for owner-breeder Gilbert Campbell. He won twice and placed in two stakes before a private sale to his current connections late in the year.
A chestnut by Untuttable, This Ones for Phil ran three times after winning the Swale in late March on the disqualification of Big Drama, finishing second in the Withers Stakes (gr. II) at Aqueduct, fifth as the favorite in the W.C. Stephens (gr. II) at Belmont Park and then winning an allowance at Laurel Park on Nov. 28 after a layoff of nearly five months.
This Ones for Phil’s most formidable rival may be another recent arrival from New York. Robert LaPenta’s sometimes brilliant 4-year-old Biker Boy, with Cornelio Velasquez in the saddle, competes for trainer Nick Zito. The son of Came Home has won five of eight career starts with a second and a third, most recently winning a one-mile allowance over a muddy track at Belmont on Oct. 17.
Completing the field are Rose Family Stable’s pair of Prince Joshua and Make Me Zach, Edmund Gann’s duo of Motovato and You and I Forever, Jagger's War Fighter, El Castillo Stud’s Pechito, Ione and Herb Elkins’ Dream Maestro, and Steve Tortora and Toni Ancona's Hypocrite, all uncoupled.
$100,000 Kenny Noe Jr. Handicap (gr. III, Race 9, 3:51 p.m.), 3 & Up, 7 Furlongs
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer, ML Odds
1. Prince Joshua (FL), D Coa, 116, B R Rose, 6/1
2. War Fighter (FL), E Castro, 114, J Ness, 15/1
3. Pechito (ARG), C Penalba, 115, M J Azpurua, 12/1
4. Dream Maestro (FL), M R Cruz, 115, W A Kaplan, 20/1
5. You and I Forever (KY), J Lezcano, 117, M D Wolfson, 8/1
6. Motovato (KY), E Trujillo, 117, M D Wolfson, 5/1
7. Biker Boy (KY), C H Velasquez, 116, N P Zito, 3/1
8. Hypocrite (FL), L Saez, 117, E Tortora, 8/1
9. This Ones for Phil (FL), J R Velazquez, 120, R E Dutrow Jr., 5/2
10. Make Me Zach (FL), J A Rivera II, 115, B R Rose, 20/1