Charles Fipke's Java's War , winner of the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) April 13, heads a field of five or six likely starters in the upcoming $150,000 Swaps Stakes (gr. II) at Betfair Hollywood Park.
For 3-year-olds at 1 1/8 miles on Cushion Track, the Swaps will be run July 4, kicking off the Independence Day weekend at the Inglewood track. The July 5 program will mark the final night racing card at Hollywood Park. Post time is 7:05. The July 6 card will feature the signature event of Hollywood's final spring/summer meet, the $500,000 Hollywood Gold Cup (gr. I) at 1 1/4 miles on Cushion Track. Defending champion Game On Dude is expected to head the field.
Trainer Ken McPeek confirmed to racing secretary Martin Panza on the morning of June 27 that Java's War will be arriving at Hollywood Park July 1. The bay colt will be stabled in the barn of Hall of Fame conditioner Jack Van Berg.
A homebred son of War Pass out of the Rainbow Quest mare Java, Java's War has won three of eight starts with earnings of $672,091. He came to prominence last year with a fast-closing third in the Breeders Futurity (gr. I) at Keeneland, where he would return to edge Belmont Stakes (gr. I) winner Palace Malice by a neck in this spring's Blue Grass.
Java's War hesitated and got away slowly in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) May 4, all but dooming his chances as he finished 13th in the 19-horse field.
Julien Leparoux, who rode Java's War in the Blue Grass and Kentucky Derby, once again has the mount.
Other Swaps contenders include Tiz a Minister, Power Broker, Dice Flavor, and Chief Havoc.