Dwyer Stakes (gr. II) winner Teeth of the Dog, looking to rebound from a fourth-place finish in the July 28 Jim Dandy (gr. II) at Saratoga Race Course, heads a field of nine sophomores entered in the $350,000 Smarty Jones Stakes (gr. III) at Parx Racing.
The Smarty Jones, which will be run at one mile and 70 yards as race 10 with an approximate post of 4:40 p.m. EDT, has two other contenders coming off lackluster efforts over a sloppy sealed track in the Jim Dandy: John Oxley's Prospective and My Adonis, owned by George and Lori Hall. The race is considered a traditional prep for the $1 million Pennsylvania Derby (gr. II) on Sept. 22, which could draw Travers (gr. I) dead-heat winners Alpha and Golden Ticket.
Teeth of the Dog has been a money-earner in multiple 3-year-old stakes races for J.W. Singer and trainer Michael Matz this season, running third in the Resorts World Casino New York City Wood Memorial (gr. I) and fifth in the Preakness (gr. I). Taken back to slightly easier company June 9 in the 1 1/16-mile Easy Goer Stakes at Belmont Park, the Bluegrass Cat colt drew clear to win by 3 3/4 lengths. He then parlayed that victory into his June 30 Dwyer score.
Joel Rosario rides Teeth of the Dog, carrying 124 pounds, from post 3.
The July 28 Jim Dandy went worse for John Oxley's Ohio Derby (gr. III) and Tampa Bay Derby (gr. II) winner Prospective, who finished eighth and last of all. The Malibu Moon colt has won six of his twelve starts but has not had success on the biggest days, finishing 18th in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) and 13th last year in the Grey Goose Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I).
Prospective, trained by Mark Casse, will be ridden by Jermaine Bridgmohan from post 5 and carries 124.
My Adonis was fifth in the Jim Dandy after winning the Long Branch Stakes at Monmouth Park in his prior start for trainer Kelly Breen. A son of Pleasantly Perfect, he is still seeking a graded stakes score after a third-place finish in Gulfstream Park's Holy Bull (gr. III) at the beginning of the year and a runner-up finish in the Gotham (gr. II). He also ran in the Wood Memorial, but finished seventh, and was eighth in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) with a third-place finish in the ungraded Cannonero II Stakes at Pimlico Race Course between.
My Adonis carries 124 pounds, including Paco Lopez, from the outside.
Junebugred is an intriguing addition to the Smarty Jones. A Corinthian ridgling, he won the Jan. 1 Smarty Jones Stakes at Oaklawn Park before running sixth in the Feb. 20 Southwest Stakes (gr. III), after which he was discovered to have chipped a bone in his ankle. The injury required arthroscopic surgery and Junebugred did not return to the races for trainer Steve Hobby until a seven-furlong allowance at Saratoga Aug. 4, where he never threatened and finished seventh of nine.
Terry Thompson rides the Alex and JoAnn Lieblong-owned runner, also assigned 124 pounds, from post 8.