Dogwood Stable will send out a pair of juveniles for Saratoga’s opening weekend Sanford Stakes (gr. II), including the only stakes winner, Lou Brissie.
The first of three important Saratoga events for 2-year-olds, the six-furlong Sanford drew a field of eight, including Dogwood’s coupled entry of Lou Brissie and Blue Right By. Post time is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. EDT July 25 for the $150,000 race.
Lou Brissie was runner-up by nearly 10 lengths to Kantharos last out in the July 3 Bashford Manor (gr. III) at Churchill Downs, one start after winning the five-furlong Kentucky Juvenile Stakes (gr. III). The son of Limehouse—Fearless Cat, by Forest Wildcat, is trained by Neil Howard. He broke his maiden in his April 15 debut at Keeneland.
Bred in Kentucky by Gulf Coast Farms, Lou Brissie will be ridden by Robby Albarado while carrying top weight of 121 pounds.
“Lou Brissie won his first start, then ran second to one of the best 2-year-olds in the country,” said Howard. “Everything he has done has indicated that he has talent. We have been pointing for the stakes at Saratoga, but these races will be tough, especially those that have a lot of history.”
Blue Right By, trained by Dallas Stewart, won a maiden special weight in his third start June 19 at Churchill. The Bluegrass Cat colt took over on the turn and drew off to win by 2 1/2 lengths. He will be ridden by Calvin Borel this time.
Todd Pletcher has won the Sanford four times and will return for once again with Repole Stable’s Another Silver Oak. Also by Bluegrass Cat, the gray/roan colt won at first asking June 15 at Delaware Park. He was a $170,000 yearling purchase at the Keeneland September 2009 yearling sale. John Velazquez will ride.
“He was a little difficult to load (at Delaware), but he did everything professionally after that,” Pletcher. “We’re doing something we rarely do, and that’s make an equipment change after a win. We’re running him with blinkers on, and we have given him a few workouts in blinkers.”
The maiden winner with the largest margin of victory was Maybesomaybenot, a Sunday Break gelding trained by Mike Maker for Carolyn and Karen Scisney. Maybesomaybenot romped by six lengths July 3 at Churchill going six furlongs in his second start. Julien Leparoux takes over the mount.
A good-looking first out winner was Klaravich Stables and W. H. Lawrence’s Bail Out the Cat, who rolled by 2 1/4 lengths as the odds-on favorite in the mud at Belmont Park June 10. Richard Violette will saddle the son of Tale of the Cat, the 2-1 morning-line choice.
“Bail Out the Cat is kind of a quirky horse,” said Melissa Cohen, assistant to Violette. “He needs a target–you could see that at the end of his race. It’s hard to tell how good he is because of his quirkiness. He just does what he has to do.”
Chipshot enters the race off a 2 1/4-length decision over fellow Sanford entrant Nacho Saint in a June 6 maiden event at Monmouth Park. The Sanford will be the fourth start for Chipshot, who began his career with a sixth at Keeneland in April and a runner-up effort at Churchill in May.
Shaun Bridgmohan, who rode the Steve Asmussen trainee in his first two races, has regained the mount.
The Sanford will be followed by the Saratoga Special (gr. II) Aug. 16 and the Thre Chimneys Hopeful Stakes (gr. I)Sept. 6.
$150,000 Sanford Stakes (gr. II, Race 9, 5:30 p.m.), 2YO, 6 Furlongs (Dirt) PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, Trainer
1. Maybesomaybenot (KY), J R Leparoux, 119, M J Maker
2. Nacho Saint (KY), G K Gomez, 117 K J Breen
3. Bail Out the Cat (KY), A Garcia, 119, R A Violette Jr.
4. Another Silver Oak (KY), J R Velazquez, 119, T A Pletcher
5. Chipshot (FL), S Bridgmohan, 119, S M Asmussen
6. Lou Brissie (KY), R Albarado, 121, N J Howard
7. Blue Right By (KY), C H Borel, 119, D Stewart
8. Commonwealth Rush (KY), R Maragh, 119, T A Ice