El Areeb scores at Laurel Park

El Areeb scores at Laurel Park

Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club

El Areeb, Takaful Seek Graded Win in Jerome

Stakes winner El Areeb faces six others in one-mile test.

M M G Stables’ El Areeb is expected to be among the seven newly minted 3-year-olds looking for a graded stakes victory and Road to the Kentucky Derby points who will line up for the $150,000 Jerome Stakes (gr. III) at Aqueduct Racetrack Jan. 2. 

The stakes-winning Exchange Rate colt is assigned the highweight of 120 pounds in the one-mile, 70-yard inner track test and is coming off of a frontrunning 5 1/4-length score in the Nov. 19 James F. Lewis Stakes at Laurel Park. One race prior, an Oct. 15 six-furlong maiden special weight, he also took the lead immediately out of the gate and hit the wire 8 3/4 lengths in front. He will break from post 6 under regular jockey Trevor McCarthy for trainer Cathal Lynch.

El Areeb will be trying two turns for the first time after four sprints at Laurel and Parx Racing.

After running third as the favorite in the Remsen Stakes (gr. II), Shadwell Stable’s Takaful aims to return to winning form for trainer Kiaran McLaughlin. In his one other start, the Bernardini  colt won his maiden race debut at Belmont Park Oct. 29 by eight lengths. In the Remsen, he finished a head in front of another Jerome contender Win With Pride. Takaful, who led early int he Remsen, breaks from post 3 under jockey Jose Ortiz. 

West Point Thoroughbreds’ The Walk is stretching out in distance after running third last time out in the six-furlong King’s Swan Stakes at Aqueduct Dec. 2 and second in the 6 1/2-furlong Christopher Elser Memorial Stakes Nov. 12 at Parx Racing. The Hansen gelding finished fourth in the Futurity Stakes (gr. III) Oct. 15 at Belmont. 

Also looking to break through in stakes company is Three Diamonds Farm’s Bonus Points, who was second in the Maryland Juvenile Futurity Dec. 10 at Laurel and third in the Awad Stakes on the Belmont turf Oct. 29.

True Timber and Everybodyluvsrudy both enter off maiden scores. Everybodyluvesrudy ran fifth in the grade I Hopeful Stakes Sept. 5 at Saratoga Race Course.

The Jerome is the first of four graded stakes at Aqueduct for 3-year-olds on the Road to the Kentucky Derby, which also includes the Withers Stakes (gr. III) Feb. 4, the Gotham Stakes (gr. III) March 4, and the Wood Memorial (gr. II) April 8. The first four finishers in the Jerome will be awarded points on Road to the Kentucky Derby leaderboard (10-4-2-1).

Entries: Jerome S. (G3)

Aqueduct Racetrack, Monday, January 02, 2017, Race 8

  • Grade III
  • 1m 70y
  • Inner track
  • $150,000
  • 3 yo
  • 3:50 PM (local)
11Bonus Points (MD)Manuel Franco116Todd A. Pletcher15/1
22Everybodyluvsrudy (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateAngel S. Arroyo116Rudy R. Rodriguez8/1
33Takaful (KY)Jose L. Ortiz116Kiaran P. McLaughlin1/1
44True Timber (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateKendrick Carmouche116Kiaran P. McLaughlin12/1
55The Walk (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateDylan Davis116Thomas Albertrani20/1
66El Areeb (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateTrevor McCarthy120Cathal A. Lynch3/1
77Win With Pride (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateIrad Ortiz, Jr.116Todd A. Pletcher6/1