Bill Denver/EQUI-PHOTO

Micromanage Confirmed for Start in Haskell

Long Branch winner to take on Oxbow and Verrazano in July 28 test at Monmouth Park.

Long Branch Stakes winner Micromanage  will make his next start in the $1 million William Hill Haskell Invitational (gr. I) at Monmouth Park July 28, owner Mike Repole has confirmed.

"His win in the Long Branch was very impressive," said Repole July 21. "He overcame a lot of trouble to win going away. He is 2-for-2 over the track and he is getting better every start."

In the July 7 Long Branch, Monmouth's last major prep for the Haskell, Micromanage was carried extremely wide going into the first turn, before picking up horses going into the far turn and drawing clear in the stretch to win by 4 1/2 lengths.

"I'm not sure what really happened around the first turn," said jockey Joe Bravo, who was aboard Micromanage in the Long Branch. "We were sitting off horses and then we just ended up getting fanned out into the parking lot.

"After that, I thought the race was over, but around the three-eighths pole he really started picking it up. That was a pretty impressive performance considering the trouble he got in."

A $170,000 yearling purchase, Micromanage is by Medaglia d'Oro  out of the Flying Paster mare Catnip. In six lifetime starts the Todd Pletcher trainee sports a record of 3-1-0. He broke his maiden by an easy five lengths at Saratoga Race Course in his debut last September.

Micromanage captured his first start as a 3-year-old, an allowance event at Monmouth May 11. He followed that up with a runner-up performance to Power Broker in the Easy Goer Stakes before taking the Long Branch. The bay colt has won three of six lifetime starts while earning $176,200.

He will be facing several 3-year-old division leaders in the Haskell. The field is expected to include Preakness (gr. I) winner Oxbow , Wood Memorial (gr. I) winner Verrazano , Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) runner-up Golden Soul, and grade I winner Power Broker. 

Others being considered for the 1 1/8-mile Haskell include Pick of the Litter and Uncaptured .

"It looks like there will be a good pace and the added distance will help," Repole said.

The Haskell will highlight a 14-race card that will include five graded stakes events.  Gates will open at 10 a.m. with first post set for noon. The Haskell is slated as the 13th race with an estimated post time of 6:20 p.m.