Ben's Cat

Ben's Cat

Chad B. Harmon

Ben's Cat Back Again for Mister Diz Stakes

Ten-year-old gelding will attempt to win stakes for seventh consecutive year Aug. 20.

The Jim Stable's Ben's Cat, as part of "Maryland Pride" day at Laurel Park Aug. 20, will attempt to win the $75,000 Mister Diz Stakes at six furlongs on the grass for the seventh consecutive year.

The Mister Diz is one of two stakes—the other is the $75,000 Jameela for fillies and mares—on the 11-race Saturday program that attracted 127 entries. All races are for Maryland-bred or -sired horses, with six scheduled for the turf.

Ten-year-old Ben's Cat, bred in Maryland by his owner and trainer King Leatherbury, will shoot for his third victory of 2016. He won his first two starts of the year, including the Turf Sprint at Pimlico Race Course, and finished third in two other stakes, the Pennsylvania Governor's Cup and Parx Dash (gr. IIIT).

Maryland Jockey Club media officials noted that only one other horse who has won the same stakes seven times is Leaping Plum, who captured the Grasmick Handicap at Fonner Park in Nebraska eight times from 1995-2001 and in 2003.

On the turf at Laurel, Ben's Cat, by Parker's Storm Cat, has 11 wins from 18 starts, with four seconds and a third. He has finished in the top three in 13 of 15 tries at six furlongs with nine wins.

"Most horse people know that it's hard to win all the time, so when he gets beat they still support him," Leatherbury said of one of the most popular Maryland-based horses of all time. "Running third, they'll give him credit. I might be disappointed, but they'll say, 'Well he was third, he ran a good race.' They understand that. They know the game and any horse can get beat in any one race."

Ben's Cat, to be ridden by Trevor McCarthy as the 124-pound highweight, drew the outside post 11 in the Mister Diz. The competition includes Michael Harrison's Just Jack, a 3-year-old Great Notion gelding who is two-for-two in turf sprints, including one at Laurel; and Stephen Ferguson's 5-year-old Rock Hard Ten gelding Rockinn On Bye, fourth beaten two lengths by Ben's Cat in May at Laurel and a close second at Laurel in June to Pool Winner, who came back to win his next start.

Entries: Mister Diz S.

Laurel Park, Saturday, August 20, 2016, Race 10

  • STK
  • 6f
  • Turf
  • $75,000
  • 3 yo's & up
  • 5:57 PM (local)
11Rockinn On Bye (MD)Taylor M. Hole118Stephen M. Casey6/1
22Just Jack (MD)Sheldon Russell116Hamilton A. Smith5/1
33A P Elvis (MD)Forest Boyce118Dove P. Houghton15/1
44Team Tim (MD)Angel Cruz118Timothy L. Keefe30/1
55Blu Moon Ace (MD)Keeneland Sales GraduateJevian Toledo116Lawrence E. Murray6/1
66John Jones (MD)UNKNOWN118Lacey Gaudet30/1
77Barrel of Love (NY)Alex Cintron118Dove P. Houghton15/1
88Grandiflora (MD)Feargal Lynch120Ann W. Merryman8/1
99Frisky Magician (NY)Julian Pimentel118Michael J. Trombetta12/1
1010Connemara Coast (MD)UNKNOWN120Timothy L. Keefe15/1
1111Ben's Cat (MD)Trevor McCarthy124King T. Leatherbury8/5