A well-balanced group of seasoned turf sprinters will line up Oct. 10 at Keeneland for the $125,000 Woodford Stakes. The 5 1/2-furlong event is the first of five graded stakes on the card for Keeneland’s second day of the fall meeting.
A power trio of Mr. Nightlinger, Silver Timber, and Fort Prado figure to draw the most interest.
Mr. Nightlinger, owned by Martin Racing Stable and Carl Moore Management, is a veteran turf sprinter in the Midwest, and won the 2008 Shakertown Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Keeneland during the spring stand, but the 5-year-old’s last four races have come elsewhere. Given a two-month break after a neck loss in the July 11 Turf Sprint Handicap at Calder, Mr. Nightlinger was a bang-up third in the five-furlong Turf Monster Handicap at Philadelphia Park. The son of Indian Charlie is based at Churchill Downs with trainer Bret Calhoun.
Michael Dubb’s Silver Timber will be making his Keeneland debut in the Woodford. Claimed off trainer Linda Rice and Invictus Farm in May, the Chad Brown-trained gelding won the July 18 Jaipur Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Belmont, then was second, beaten just a neck by the turf sprint powerhouse Cannonball in the restricted Commentator Stakes at Saratoga at the Woodford trip. The stalker-type’s outside post should allow for him to settle in the right spot early on.
Team Block’s Fort Prado sports a 2-1-2 mark from five starts over Keeneland’s turf layout and was third in this event last year behind Chamberlain Bridge and Smart Enough. In his last start, Sept. 19, the son of El Prado charged from seventh to win the six-furlong Kentucky Cup Turf Dash Stakes at Kentucky Downs.
Woodford Stakes (gr. IIIT), Keeneland, 5 ½ furlongs, $125,000, 3-year-olds and up, Saturday, Oct. 10, race 5.
PP – Horse – Jockey
1 – Luck Money – C. Rojas
2 – Mr. Nightlinger – J. Theriot
3 – Stradivinsky – E.T. Baird
4 – Forest Tour – J. Graham
5 – Bullet From Abroad – R. Albarado
6 – Due Date – J. Lezcano
7- Silver Timber – J. Leparoux
8 – Fort Prado – J. Castanon
9 – Goldzar – M. Mena