Flurry Racing Stables' Mr. Misunderstood will attempt to remain unbeaten on turf as he headlines a field of eight 3-year-olds in the $100,000 Commonwealth Turf Stakes (G3T) Nov. 11 at Churchill Downs.
Trained by Brad Cox, Mr. Misunderstood was victorious by 2 3/4 lengths in the Sept. 30 Jefferson Cup Stakes last time out at Churchill Downs as the 6-5 favorite. The 3-year-old Archarcharch gelding is undefeated in six starts on turf, including his last three starts in listed stakes, and boasts an overall record of 7-1-0 from 11 starts and $304,554 in earnings.
"He's turned into a very nice horse on the turf," said assistant trainer Jorje Abrego. "I breezed him (Saturday) morning and he did everything easily (four furlongs in :47 3/5). I don't know if he's the type of horse to jump up into grade 1s yet, but if we keep spotting him right, he'll pick up solid paydays."
Chief among Mr. Misunderstood's rivals is Jefferson Cup third-place finisher Giant Payday, owned by Lothenbach Stables. One of two entered in the Commonwealth Turf for trainer Ian Wilkes, the Giant's Causeway colt prevailed in Canterbury Park's Aug. 26 Mystic Lake Derby.
Wilkes' son-in-law Chris Landeros has the call, while Joe Rocco Jr. will ride stablemate Mr Cub following a fifth-place effort in the Jefferson Cup.
New to Kentucky is Chiefswood Stables' Canada-based Tiz a Slam. The Roger Attfield-trainee was the 3 1/4-length winner of the Oct. 15 Ontario Derby (G3) at Woodbine on the Tapeta 10 course over Holy Helena.
A son of Tiznow , Tiz a Slam enters the Commonwealth Turf with a record of 4-2-0 from 11 starts and $469,147 in earnings, including a pair of victories on turf.
Hawthorne Derby winner My Bariley, American Derby (G3T) runner-up Gorgeous Kitten, Exacta Systems Dueling Grounds Derby runner-up Parlor, and Kentucky Downs maiden winner Sharm El Sheikh round out the field. Churchill Downs, Saturday, November 11, 2017, Race 10
PP Horse Jockey Wgt Trainer M/L 1 1Sharm El Sheikh (KY) Ricardo Santana, Jr. 118 Murat Sancal 50/1 2 2My Bariley (KY) Fernando De La Cruz 120 Anthony J. Granitz 15/1 3 3Mr Cub (KY) Joseph Rocco, Jr. 118 Ian R. Wilkes 6/1 4 4Parlor (KY) Julien R. Leparoux 118 Eddie Kenneally 6/1 5 5Gorgeous Kitten (KY) Corey J. Lanerie 118 Michael J. Maker 8/1 6 6Mr. Misunderstood (KY) Florent Geroux 120 Brad H. Cox 4/5 7 7Tiz a Slam (ON) Robby Albarado 118 Roger L. Attfield 8/1 8 8Giant Payday (KY) Chris Landeros 120 Ian R. Wilkes 5/1
Churchill Downs, Saturday, November 11, 2017, Race 10