Booklet and Harlan's Holiday, the respective first and second place finishers in Saturday's Holy Bull Stakes, are expected to meet again Feb. 16 in the Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. I), the next step on the road to the Florida Derby (gr. I).
Owner John Oxley said Booklet lived up to the potential he saw in the son of Notebook before his recent purchase.
"I really liked the breeding and pedigree on this horse and that is why I bought him," Oxley said. "Also, I've had Derby fever ever since last spring when we won the Florida and Kentucky Derbys with Monarchos. That is another reason why I bought him. I think he will go longer and his next start will probably be the Fountain of Youth."
"He looks like a good purchase," said trainer John T. Ward. "I think this horse a unique ability for a young horse to be able to sustain pace. I think he will go farther. I liked what I saw today and I though Eibar (jockey Eibar Coa) rode an excellent race. I've only had this horse in my barn for about three weeks and I'd like to thank trainer Steve Klesaris. He got this horse ready."
Meanwhile, trainer Ken McPeek confirmed that Harlan's Holiday, who finished second as the 9-10 favorite in the Holy Bull, will also get another chance in the Fountain of Youth.
"I kind of feel like the Oakland Raiders this morning," McPeek said Sunday. "I was robbed. I think I had the best horse in the Holy Bull and I think it'll be proved in future races. We'll find out in the Fountain of Youth..."
Trainer Todd Pletcher reported that Nokoma, who finished fourth in the Holy Bull, was tired immediately after the race and that he is undecided on the colt's next start.
"He came back very tired after the race," Pletcher said Sunday. "But he was bright and bouncy this morning. I'll play it by ear as to when and where he will next run."