Speed Franco (outside) edges Gidu to win the Dania Beach Stakes at Gulfstream Park

Speed Franco (outside) edges Gidu to win the Dania Beach Stakes at Gulfstream Park

Coglianese Photos/Lauren King

Speed Franco Heads Palm Beach; Thewayiam Eyes Another

Colts and fillies will take to the turf March 3 at Gulfstream Park.

In the first 32 runnings of the Palm Beach Stakes (G3T), participants have included Kitten's Joy Mr Speaker , Divisidero, Paddy O'Prado, and more.

The list is long of 3-year-olds who have come out of the turf race and gone on to bigger things. The connections of seven hope their colts and geldings follow in the wake of those graded stakes winners March 3, when the Palm Beach is one of nine stakes contested at Gulfstream Park.

One of the favorites in the 1 1/16-mile event is Grupo 7C Racing Stable's Speed Franco. The son of Declaration of War  enters the Palm Beach off a gutsy performance in the one-mile Feb. 3 Dania Beach (G3T), when he got his nose down at the wire to win a stretch battle against Zayat Stables' Gidu. It was the first graded stakes victory for the Gustavo Delgado-trained colt who won the one-mile Pulpit Stakes in December.

"He's a very nice horse," Delgado said. When asked about going the Palm Beach's additional distance, Delgado smiled, pointed to the sky, and said, "I just need a little good luck."

Trainer David Fawkes will saddle one of only three stakes winners in the field in Renaisance Frolic. A winner of the Armed Forces Stakes last fall, Renaisance Frolic was beaten less than a length Jan. 6 in the Kitten's Joy Stakes. The bay colt comes into the Palm Beach off a troubled fifth in the Dania Beach.

"It was a weird situation," said Fawkes, whose son of Paynter  was bumped at the start. "When he got to the turn, right when the horse who finished second made his move, my rider was taking back and going around. It wasn't his fault—he thought he would have to wait too long. So while the horse who finished second goes up the rail, we got carried out.

"But he's doing great. We'll have (jockey) Javier (Castellano) on the horse, and he had a real nice work (Saturday, four furlongs in :49.23 at Gulfstream)."

Trainer Todd Pletcher will send out Maraud. A son of Blame  owned by Treadway Racing Stable, Maraud broke his maiden on the turf in his career debut Sept. 2 at Saratoga Race Course before he finished third, beaten less than a length, in the Sept. 30 Pilgrim Stakes (G3T) at Belmont Park. After finishing third in the Pulpit, Maraud came back Jan. 13 and won by two lengths in an entry-level allowance at Gulfstream. 

"He's doing well," Pletcher said. "He's coming off a nice allowance win here, so we've kind of zeroed in on this spot for quite a while. He's training well."

Therapist, a New York-bred son of Freud , enters the Palm Beach undefeated in three starts for trainer Christophe Clement. After breaking his maiden in his debut at Belmont in July, Therapist won the Laurel Futurity in September and the Awad Stakes at Belmont in October. Irad Ortiz Jr. rides.

HawkishEye of a Jedi, and Neepawa complete the field.

Also on Saturday's card, Thewayiam seeks her third consecutive stakes victory when she meets seven others in the $100,000 Herecomesthebride Stakes (G3T).

Owned by Great Point Stables, Michael Dubb, The Elkstone Group, and Bethlehem Stables, Thewayiam, a 3-year-old filly by Thewayyouare, has won three of four starts since arriving in the U.S. from France, where she won one of three races.

After winning her U.S. debut at Keeneland in October, she finished 11th in the Jimmy Durante (G3T) at Del Mar in November. In her two starts this year, she's won Gulfstream's listed Ginger Brew Stakes and the Sweetest Chant Stakes (G3T).

"She's like the Energizer Bunny," trainer Graham Motion said. "She's doing well, and she obviously likes that track so it looks like a logical spot."

Regarding her only loss in the U.S. in California, Motion said "definitely draw a line" through the Durante.

"She drew a terrible post, and she was put in an unfair spot," said Motion, who has jockey Jose Ortiz aboard for the third consecutive time in the 1 1/16-mile Herecomesthebride.

The opposition includes Brattata, Amertume, Princess Warrior, and My Favorite Gift.

Brattata, trained by Chad Brown—who sends out 2017's champion 2-year-old male Good Magic Saturday at Gulfstream in the Xpressbet Fountain of Youth Stakes (G2)—has placed first, second, or third in all five of her turf starts. The daughter of More Than Ready  finished second as a maiden in the Nov. 4 Chelsey Flower Stakes at Aqueduct Racetrack before breaking her maiden in her fifth attempt Feb. 4 at Gulfstream. Irad Ortiz Jr. has the mount.

Amertume enters the Herecomesthebride for trainer Todd Pletcher and jockey John Velazquez after breaking her maiden in her career debut Jan. 27 at Gulfstream. The daughter of Tapit  closed from ninth to best 13 rivals that day.

Princess Warrior will be making her 3-year-old and turf debut for trainer Ken McPeek. The daughter of Midshipman  broke her maiden at first asking in September at Churchill Downs and finished second in the Darley Alcibiades Stakes (G1) before coming in eighth in the 14 Hands Winery Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1). Princess Warrior ended her 2-year-old season finishing second Nov. 25 at Churchill in an entry-level allowance.

My Favorite Gift goes out for trainer Gustavo Delgado after finishing fourth Feb. 3 in the Sweetest Chant where she set a pressured pace. The daughter of Tapit, who sold for $300,000 as a yearling, gets jockey Emisael Jaramillo.

Entries: Palm Beach S. (G3T)

Gulfstream Park, Saturday, March 03, 2018, Race 6

  • Grade IIIT
  • 1 1/16m
  • Turf
  • $100,000
  • 3 yo
  • 2:00 PM (local)
11Speed Franco (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateEmisael Jaramillo120Gustavo Delgado9/5
22Maraud (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateJohn R. Velazquez114Todd A. Pletcher3/1
33Renaisance Frolic (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateJavier Castellano118David Fawkes12/1
44Neepawa (ON)Tyler Gaffalione114Mark E. Casse8/1
55Eye of a Jedi (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateCarlos Montalvo114Steve Budhoo20/1
66Therapist (NY)Irad Ortiz, Jr.118Christophe Clement5/2
77Hawkish (KY)Jose L. Ortiz114James J. Toner8/1

Entries: Herecomesthebride S. (G3T)

Gulfstream Park, Saturday, March 03, 2018, Race 7

  • Grade IIIT
  • 1 1/16m
  • Turf
  • $100,000
  • 3 yo Fillies
  • 2:30 PM (local)
11Princess Warrior (KY)Julien R. Leparoux114Kenneth G. McPeek6/1
22My Favorite Gift (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateEmisael Jaramillo114Gustavo Delgado15/1
33Thewayiam (FR)Jose L. Ortiz120H. Graham Motion2/1
44Brattata (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateIrad Ortiz, Jr.114Chad C. Brown5/2
55Amertume (KY)John R. Velazquez114Todd A. Pletcher7/2
66Queen Rose (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateEdgar Perez114Antonio Sano20/1
77She's Pretty Lucky (TX)Joe Bravo118Eddie Kenneally12/1
88Malibu Saint (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateLuis Saez118Michael J. Maker10/1