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One year after making his graded stakes debut in the $200,000 Tom Fool Handicap (G3), 7-year-old gelding Spartiatis used the six-furlong test to notch his first graded stakes triumph March 11.
- By BloodHorse Staff
- Thoroughbred Racing, Triple Crown, Northeast Region, Southeast Region, Southwest Region, West Region
Each week BloodHorse.com looks forward to the weekend's biggest races. This week we have a trio of grade 1 races at Santa Anita Park, a Triple Crown prep on each coast, and more.
This week is a recap of the 2004 Tom Fool Handicap (G2), run that year on July 4 at Belmont Park and won by Ghostzapper. Following is a short recap written by Steve Haskin followed by the stakes shell filed by Dan Liebman.
Green Gratto will be making his 52nd lifetime start when he faces seven opponents in the Tom Fool Handicap, in which he will carry high weight of 119 pounds. Chief Lion is a threat to compromise Green Gratto on the front end.
After finishing second in a pair of graded stakes in Southern California, crack sprinter Salutos Amigos has returned to New York where he'll aim to defend his 2015 score in the Tom Fool Handicap (gr. III) March 12 at Aqueduct
Salutos Amigos, carrying topweight of 125 pounds, will try for three in a row against his arch rival in six-furlong test
Strapping Groom rallied in deep stretch to claim the $200,000 Tom Fool Handicap (gr. III) at Aqueduct Racetrack, his first graded stakes score since a 15-1 upset in the Forego Stakes (gr. I) last summer.
TimeformUS Saturday Plays from Aqueduct, Gulfstream and Santa Anita read blog
Favored Comma to the Top, making just his second appearance outside of California, proved a tenacious winner of the $200,000 Tom Fool Handicap (gr. III) March 2 at Aqueduct Racetrack, just a week after making his last start.
While Comma to the Top registered his biggest win in the 2010 CashCall Futurity (gr. I), the Bwana Charlie gelding has placed in three straight graded stakes, including a clear victory in the Daytona Stakes to close out 2012
Calibrachoa took over from the pacesetters in the stretch and held off a late run from Caleb's Posse to win the $200,000 Tom Fool Handicap (gr. III) by a neck March 3.
Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile winner Caleb's Posse will likely draw the most betting attention in the Tom Fool Handicap at Aqueduct, but he will have to face a pair of multiple graded stakes winners with a fondness for the track.
The Mike Repole/Todd Pletcher team will be formidable when they send out the coupled entry of Calibrachoa and Have You Ever the six-furlong event March 5 at Aqueduct. A field of six was drawn.
Munnings, a seven-furlong sprint specialist with three grade II wins to his credit, has been retired and will stand the 2011 breeding season at Ashford Stud near Versailles, Ky.
Everything went Munning's way in the $200,000 Tom Fool Handicap (gr. II) at Belmont Park July 5. First, top sprinter Fabulous Strike, the heavy favorite, was scratched by trainer Todd Beattie. Then came a perfect trip for jockey John Velazquez, who drove the sharp 3-year-old colt through an inside gap at the top of the stretch on their way to a comfortable win.
After Fabulous Strike turned in a dazzling performance in the June 6 True North (gr. III), trainer Todd Beattie said he was leaning toward giving the 6-year-old gelding some well-deserved time off. But as they say, the horse will tell you what it wants, and the son of Smart Strike has spoken loud and clear.
Lucky Island showed his greed for speed in the $161,000 Tom Fool Handicap (gr. II), grabbing the lead after bursting out of the starting gate from the one hole and rolling to a 4 1/4 length victory, without a serious challenge, July 4 at Belmont Park in New York.
Trainer Nick Zito could not think any more highly of Tracy Farmer's Commentator, the standout in Wednesday's competitive $200,000 Tom Fool Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) at Belmont Park.
Odds-on choice Silver Train outfought War Front by a neck in a gritty stretch duel to capture the $150,000 Tom Fool Handicap (gr. II) over seven furlongs at Belmont Park Sunday.
Sunday's $150,000 Tom Fool Handicap (gr. II) at seven furlongs at Belmont Park is the last chance for Silver Train to run over his favorite track until the fall so trainer Richard Dutrow Jr. is taking this start as seriously as any grade I race.
Hobeau Farm's homebred Smokume overcame his difficult rail post to win the $150,000 Tom Fool Handicap (gr. II) on a sealed Belmont Park main track Sunday.
Hobeau Farm's Smokume, a four-time stakes winner in search of his first graded-stakes win, is among the leading contenders in the $150,000 Tom Fool Handicap (gr. II) over seven furlongs at Belmont Park Sunday.
Stronach Stable's Ghostzapper, out of action for more than nine months, showed no signs of rustiness with an emphatic triumph over three rivals in the $142,500 Tom Fool Handicap (gr. II) at Belmont Park Sunday.
Stronach Stable's Ghostzapper, absent for nine months since earning recognition as one of the nation's leading sprinters last year, returns to action Sunday in the $150,000 Tom Fool Handicap (gr. II) at Belmont Park.
Running at his favorite distance of seven furlongs, Flaxman Stable homebred Aldebaran weaved through the field and drew off for an easy two-length victory in the grade II Tom Fool Handicap on the Independence Day card at Belmont Park.
Aldebaran, who finished third in the June 14 Stephen Foster Handicap (gr. I) at Churchill Downs, will shorten up from that race's nine-furlong distance when he competes in Friday's seven-furlong Tom Fool Handicap at Belmont.
Belmont Park will celebrate the Fourth of July holiday weekend by offering six graded stakes worth more than $1.35 million. The weekend action gets underway with Friday's running of the Prioress Stakes (gr. I) and also includes the Suburban Handicap (gr. I).
Michael Tabor's Left Bank posted his 13th victory in 23 starts when he set a Belmont Park seven-furlong track record of 1:20 en route to an impressive 6 1/4-length triumph in the Tom Fool Handicap on the July 4 holiday card.
Eight-year-old millionaire Affirmed Success and beaten Metropolitan Handicap (gr. I) favorite Left Bank are scheduled to square off in the July 4 Tom Fool Handicap (gr. II) at seven furlongs for 3-year-olds and up at Belmont Park.
Sailor's Warning, a graded stakes placed son of Storm Cat, will stand in 2002 at Sam Fieramosca's Colonial Farms near Colt's Neck, N.J. His fee will be $3,500.
Sent off at 6-1 odds, Padua Stable's Exchange Rate rallied in the stretch to catch Say Florida Sandy for a narrow victory in the grade II Tom Fool Handicap that was part of the holiday card at Belmont Park.
Say Florida Sandy, a 7-year-old sprint star, is one of six horses in the grade II Tom Fool Handicap on the July 4 Independence Day card at Belmont Park.
Trippi, returning from a nine-length rout over fellow sophomores in the Riva Ridge (gr. II) on the Belmont Stakes card, set all the fractions on the way to a 4 1/2 length win against older horses in the $150,000 Tom Fool Handicap (gr. II) Sunday at Belmont Park.
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