John Servis sends out Indian Jump in the $150,000 Federico Tesio Stakes April 19.

John Servis sends out Indian Jump in the $150,000 Federico Tesio Stakes April 19.

Anne M. Eberhardt

Tesio: Servis Hopes to Make Splash

The former trainer of Smarty Jones sends out Indian Jump in the April 19 event.

John Servis has not been on the Triple Crown trail since Smarty Jones captivated the Thoroughbred racing world in 2004. The veteran trainer will try to change that this year, as he sends out Indian Jump in the $150,000 Federico Tesio Stakes April 19 at Pimlico Race Course, a 1 1/8-mile dirt event that serves as the local prep for the May 17 Preakness Stakes (gr. I).

A 3-year-old son of Yonaguska, Indian Jump has won three consecutive starts – all in wire-to-wire fashion – and has been very impressive in each.

Owned by Main Line Racing, Indian Jump was winless in two starts during his 2-year-old campaign, but turned it around at the start of the calendar year. Racing exclusively at Philadelphia Park Casino & Racetrack, the bay colt broke his maiden in January, took apart a starter allowance field three weeks later and was never challenged in allowance company March 10 at 1 1/16 miles. He won by at least two lengths in each outing.

Bred in Kentucky by Timber Ridge Farm, Inc., Indian Jump is out of the Devil His Due mare Push Her. He was a $60,000 purchase at the Keeneland 2006 September yearling sale. Most recently, Indian Jump worked five furlongs in 1:01.85 at Philly Park. He will be ridden by Kendrick Carmouche and is 10-1 on the morning line.

Favored in the Tesio is Tom and Harry Meyeroff’s Cave’s Valley, who has not won since taking the Dover Stakes last October. In the barn of one of Maryland’s leading trainers, Michael Trombetta, the son of Stephen Got Even has four other stakes efforts to his credit, including a fourth-place finish in the March 22 Private Terms Stakes at Laurel Park, where he was only three-quarters of a length in back of the winner.

“He did run well in the Private Terms. He earned a good number and now we’re going to try back around two turns and see how we do,” Trombetta said. “Over time, we have to separate these guys and see if they’re really good. It’s a fine line between the really good ones and the nice ones. It’s still early enough for him. I’m still excited about him. I think he’s a nice horse.”

Bred in Florida by Murray Smith, Cave’s Valley (3-1) drew the outside post in a field of eight and will be ridden by Julian Pimentel.

Also likely to receive support is Pinebloom Stable’s Mint Lane (4-1), who enters off a sparkling 8 ½-length allowance win March 26 at Aqueduct. The Maria's Mon colt went gate-to-wire in the one-mile score and now will step into stakes company for the first time.

Trained by Jimmy Jerkens, Mint Lane gets leading rider Mario Pino.

Also to consider is Earle Mack’s Icabad Crane (8-1), who was third in the March 22 Rushaway Stakes at Turfway Park. That was the Jump Start  colt’s only loss, as he won maiden and allowance starts at Aqueduct for trainer Graham Motion. Jeremy Rose will be in the irons.

The Tesio is race 9 on the Pimlico card, which offers four stakes events. Post time is 4:55 p.m. EDT for the feature.