The German-bred son of Acatenango will face eight others in the 1 1/2-mile turf race. He will break from post 1 with Jose Lezcano aboard. John Velazquez guided Musketier in his 2010 and 2011 victories, which came by 1 3/4 and 1 1/4 lengths, respectively. The gray/roan horse was also second in this race in 2009.
A millionaire, Musketier has six group/graded stakes wins in his career, the first of those coming in 2004 while racing in France. He has 10 wins, six seconds and six thirds from his 45 trips to post. His lone start in 2012 resulted in a third-place finish in the Feb. 26 Mac Diarmida (gr. IIT) at Gulfstream Park.
Roger Attfield, recently elected into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, trains Musketier for Stella Perdomo.
Attfield won the race in 2009 as well when Spice Route defeated Musketier by two lengths. He also scored the 2006 edition with Pellegrino.
Attfield will also saddle Simmard, who defeated Musketier by 5 3/4 lengths in the Mac Diarmida two starts ago. Most recently, the 7-year-old son of Dixieland Band was third in the March 24 Pan American (gr. IIT) at Gulfstream. Javier Castellano will have the mount.
Simmard was beaten two lengths in the Pan American by current entrant Newsdad, who will be ridden by Julien Leparoux for trainer Bill Mott. James Karp’s Newsdad exacted some revenge on Simmard that day, as his rival defeated him by a nose in the Mac Diarmida.
Velazquez will be aboard Phipps Stable’s homebred Point of Entry , who will make his graded stakes debut. The 4-year-old Dynaformer colt enters off a 1 1/2-mile allowance victory April 12 at Keeneland.
The Elkhorn is the ninth race on Friday’s 10-race card with a post time of 5:13 p.m. EDT.