Axis, Maybry's Boy to Square Off in Hutcheson Stakes

Axis, Maybry's Boy to Square Off in Hutcheson Stakes
Photo: AP/Equi-Photo
Maybrys Boy, winning the Spectacular Bid Stakes, returns in the Hutcheson.
Saturday's seven-furlong Hutcheson Stakes, recently more of a vehicle for non-Kentucky Derby horses, could provide a fascinating glimpse at the classic picture with the presence of the late-closing Maybry's Boy and the exciting prospect Axis. The undefeated Cashel Castle, originally pointing for the race, has returned to his home base in Ocala after suffering a filling in his right ankle following a half-mile breeze on Tuesday.

While Maybry's Boy likes to come from well back, as he did in the recent Spectacular Bid Stakes at 6 furlongs, Axis has a good deal of tactical speed, which he used to score emphatic victories in a 5-furlong Turfway Park maiden race and a 6-furlong allowance race at Gulfstream. His combined margin of victory in those races was 9 1/2 lengths.

"He's progressed well through the fall and early winter and has the kind of pedigree that would indicate he's going to be able to get a distance of ground," trainer Elliott Walden said. "We were impressed with this horse when we bought him and he has done nothing to disappoint us."

Axis, owned by Jubilee Stable, is by Saint Ballado, out of the unraced Moscow Tap, by Moscow Ballet. Moscow Tap's dam, Navy Knock, is a half-sister to Kentucky Derby winner Go For Gin. Jubilee Stable is a partnership of Gaines-Gentry Thoroughbreds, made up of Olin Gentry and Tom and Gloria Gaines. Jerry Bailey will ride the colt in the Hutcheson.

In other 3-year-old news at Gulfstream, Harlan's Holiday, runner-up in the Holy Bull Stakes, breezed a half in :49 Wednesday in preparation for the Fountain of Youth Stakes.

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