Whitmore (inside) trains at Oaklawn Park

Whitmore (inside) trains at Oaklawn Park

Coady Photography

Whitmore-Holy Boss Rematch in Count Fleet

Whitmore is undefeated in three starts at 6 1/2 furlongs or shorter.

Classic contender Whitmore and veteran sprinter Holy Boss are set for a rematch in the $400,000 Count Fleet Sprint Handicap (G3) at Oaklawn Park going six furlongs April 15.

Since Robert LaPenta, Harry Rosenblum, and Southern Springs Stables' Whitmore switched to sprinting after finishing next to last in the 2016 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1), he is undefeated in three starts.

Aside from the Kentucky Derby, the son of Pleasantly Perfect finished third or better in all of his sophomore starts last year, including runner-up finishes in the Southwest Stakes (G3) and Rebel Stakes (G2), and a third in the Arkansas Derby (G1), all on his home track at Oaklawn.

Trainer Ron Moquett, notably frustrated by the colt's near misses, decided to try the colt sprinting and now seems to be on the right path. Last time out in the March 11 Hot Springs Stakes, Whitmore scored by six lengths over grade 3 winner Ivan Fallunovalot, with Holy Boss another 2 3/4 lengths back in fourth.

Jerry Durant's Holy Boss will look to get back to the form he previously held, which saw the son of Street Boss  competing at the top level to finish second in the Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap (G1) and fourth in the Vosburgh Stakes (G1). 

The field of nine entered in the Count Fleet also includes Hronis Racing's Moe Candy, a son of Candy Ride  who has not finished worse than third in seven starts. The 5-year-old trained by John Sadler finished 2 1/4 lengths behind St. Joe Bay in the six-furlong Palos Verdes Stakes (G2) at Santa Anita Park Feb. 4, his only graded stakes attempt.

"He didn't get to the races early—had some issues as a young horse," Sadler said. "But he's a very talented horse."

Sharp Art, a supplemental nominee to the Count Fleet, was claimed for $40,000 Sept. 30 at Indiana Grand for Robert O'Hara Jr. and Gwyneth Gower. Trained by Matt Kordenbrock, Sharp Art has two wins and two seconds from five starts under his care.

Entries: Count Fleet Sprint H. (G3)

Oaklawn Park, Saturday, April 15, 2017, Race 7

  • Grade III
  • 6f
  • Dirt
  • $400,000
  • 4 yo's & up
  • 3:57 PM (local)
PPHorseJockeyWgtTrainerM/L
11Chief of Staff (CA)Tyler Baze113Jack C. Van Berg20/1
22Wabel (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateJavier Castellano113Brad H. Cox12/1
33Moe Candy (KY)Victor Espinoza116John W. Sadler3/1
44Black Bear (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateCalvin H. Borel113Randy L. Morse15/1
55Chief Cicatriz (KY)Richard E. Eramia114Shawn H. Davis30/1
66Holy Boss (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateMike E. Smith118Steven M. Asmussen5/1
77Sharp Art (KY)Geovanni Franco113Matt Kordenbrock30/1
88Whitmore (KY)Ricardo Santana, Jr.122Ron Moquett4/5
99Apprehender (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateAlex Birzer114Gene Jacquot15/1