Lochte is scheduled to seek his fourth straight stakes victory in the Fort Lauderdale Stakes.
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Lochte is scheduled to seek his fourth straight stakes victory in the Fort Lauderdale Stakes.
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Coglianese Photos/Leslie Martin

Lochte Headlines Ft. Lauderdale Stakes

Turf performer seeks fourth straight stakes score Jan. 9 at Gulfstream.

Lochte generated a quick and lucrative return on investment for Crossed Sabres Farm in 2014 when he captured the $300,000 Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap (gr. IT) only three months after being purchased at auction for $60,000.

The 6-year-old Medaglia d'Oro  gelding hasn't quite succeeded in repeating his success in grade I company, but has proven to be a most enduring turf performer, going on to win five more stakes.

The late-closing Lochte is scheduled to seek his fourth straight stakes victory in Saturday's $200,000 Fort Lauderdale Stakes (gr. IIT), a 1 1/16-mile turf stakes for 4-year olds and up.

"He loves to train. He's strong. He's straight-forward," trainer Marcus Vitali said. "The only quirk he has is that you can't let him run too much. He'll train all day."

Lochte, who was newly gelded when sold at the Fasig-Tipton November mixed sale at Saratoga in 2013, has been particularly productive since returning to South Florida in the fall, capturing three straight stakes by a combined total of 12 lengths.

"He's definitely on the improve. He's doing good; he's doing everything right," Vitali said. "The exercise rider said he's stronger than ever."

Lochte captured the Mr. Steele Stakes at Gulfstream on Sept. 24 by 3 1/4 lengths before scoring at Gulfstream Park West in the Spider John Stakes by 3 3/4 lengths and the Tropical Turf Handicap (gr. IIIT) by four lengths.

"He loves it in Florida," Vitali said. "I've always said he's a horse for the course. He's always done better in South Florida."

Lochte, who has earned more than $750,000 in purses, is scheduled to be ridden for the first time by Javier Castellano, the four-time defending Championship Meet titlist.

A field of 11 (and a main-track-only runner) was entered in the Fort Lauderdale, including three last-out graded-stakes winners: Klaravich Stables and William Lawrence's Takeover Target, Terry Hamilton's Heart to Heart, and Calumet Farm, Sagamore Farm, and Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners' War Correspondent .

John Oxley's Sky Flight and Key to Power are last-out stakes winners, while Melnyk Racing Stables' Lukes Alley is a last-out stakes-placed entrant from the Autumn (Can-II) on the all-weather track at Woodbine.

All Included, Fredericksburg, Money Talker, and Slip By round out the field. Multiple graded stakes winner Madefromlucky  is the MTO entrant.

Entries: Ft. Lauderdale S. (G2T)

Gulfstream Park, Saturday, January 09, 2016, Race 10

  • Grade IIT
  • 1 1/16m
  • Turf
  • $200,000
  • 4 yo's & up
  • 4:35 PM (local)
11Lochte (KY)Javier Castellano123Marcus J. Vitali3/1
22Money Talker (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateTyler Gaffalione119Josie Carroll20/1
33Key to Power (KY)Corey J. Lanerie121Brendan P. Walsh20/1
44Lukes Alley (ON)Paco Lopez119Josie Carroll20/1
55Slip By (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateRafael Manuel Hernandez119Michael R. Matz20/1
66All Included (KY)Luis Saez119Todd A. Pletcher6/1
77War Correspondent (KY)Jose Lezcano119Christophe Clement4/1
88Takeover Target (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateIrad Ortiz, Jr.123Chad C. Brown5/1
99Sky Flight (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateJoel Rosario121Mark E. Casse8/1
1010Fredericksburg (KY)Joe Bravo117Michael R. Matz15/1
1111Heart to Heart (ON)Julien R. Leparoux123Brian A. Lynch6/1
1212Madefromlucky (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateJavier Castellano119Todd A. Pletcher8/5