A winner of 16 races in 31 starts and earnings of more than $1.5 million, 7-year-old Chamberlain Bridge will ship in from Fair Grounds for trainer Bret Calhoun, a Texas native. Owned by Carl Moore Management, the 7-year-old gelded son of War Chant is a five-furlong turf specialist, winning eight times at the Rail Splitter distance.
Last year he won three consecutive stakes in Illinois and Pennsylvania before taking the $1 million BC Turf Sprint at Churchill Downs. With a perfectly timed ride by Jamie Theriot, Chamberlain Bridge advanced from ninth place and powered past his 13 rivals for his biggest win. It was the first Breeders' Cup victory for Moore, Calhoun, and Theriot.
Calhoun and Moore had been searching for a prep race for Chamberlain Bridge, who will ship to the United Arab Emirates for the Dubai World Cup (UAE-I) program at Meydan Racecourse March 26.
“We have gone back and forth with the weather," said Calhoun from his Fair Grounds barn. “The Fair Grounds weather has been so volatile; we decided that shipping to Houston was our best option. Houston has a nice turf course, which was definitely part of the lure.”
Theriot will fly in for the ride.
The field of 10 also includes Goldzar, who will ship in for owner Kenny Desormeaux and trainer Deryl Granger. The 5-year-old Kentucky-bred ran fourth in the $60,000 Bonpaw Stakes on Dec. 18 at Fair Grounds and was second in his last sprint on the main track at Delta Downs Jan. 14. Shane Sellers will ride the bay son of Cozar.
Texas Champions Day winner Truly Lucky, a 5-year-old daughter of Truluck, will run for Karl Broberg and End Zone Athletics. Rider Quincy Hamilton, who guided her to victory in the $50,000 Yellow Rose Stakes on Jan. 22, has the return call.
Hollywood Ice will be ridden by the hot turf stakes riding jockey Chris Landeros, who won the grade III, Connally Turf Cup as well as the $50,000 Jersey Lilly. The 4-year-old Oklahoma-bred is owned by Hal Browning and trained by Kari Craddock. Landeros has ridden Hollywood Ice in each of six previous starts; he will make his turf debut in the Rail Splitter.