Classic Winner to Show Up in the Saranac

Classic Winner to Show Up in the Saranac
Photo: Michael Burns
Breeders' Stakes winner Marlang takes on seven rivals in the Saranac Stakes.
Gustav Schickedanz’s homebred Marlang, winner of the 12-furlong Breeders’ Stakes (Can-IRT) in his last effort, offers plenty of intrigue as he takes on seven rivals in the Saranac Stakes (gr. IIIT) Aug. 31 at Saratoga. The 1 3/16-mile turf test shares the penultimate card for the 2008 season at the Spa with the grade I Spinaway Stakes for 2-year-old fillies.

Marlang won the Aug. 3 Breeders’ Stakes in gate-to-wire fashion at Woodbine. The Breeders’ Stakes is the third leg of the Canadian Triple Crown, that includes the Queen’s Plate (Can-IR) and Prince of Wales Stakes (Can-IR) that are both run on the dirt.

Marlang, a son of Langfuhr   out of the stakes-placed Conquistador Cielo mare Marienburg, was an easy winner of the $106,800 Charlie Barley Stakes at Woodbine in mid-June while making his turf debut going a mile. Top Canadian rider Richard Dos Ramos – Marlang’s regular pilot - makes the trip to upstate New York for the mount.

Marlang, trained by Deborah England, will tote high weight of 123 pounds in the Saranac off the allowance conditions. Awaiting him is a mix of seasoned and inexperienced runners.

Of note is European shipper Schopenhauer, who has made three starts in England without securing his initial win yet. The dark bay or brown colt was a $300,000 Keeneland November sale weanling in 2005 and is a Kentucky-bred son of Giant’s Causeway. Out of the Jade Huntermare Fine Jade, he is owned by sportsman Earle I. Mack. Schopenhauer finished third, then second, in his last two attempts, both coming at Newmarket Racecourse for trainer Luca Cumani. He sports several works at the Fair Hills Training Center to his current resume.

Thou Swell, owned by Sugartown Stable, bears watching in the Saranac. On the lead in the lane last time out Aug. 4 in the nine-furlong National Museum of Racing Hall of Fame Stakes (gr. IIT) under Jean Luc-Samyn at the Spa, he ran on well in the lane to finish second beaten just a half-length. This time the son of Aptitude will be ridden by Ramon Dominguez. The winner of the race, Wesley, and the third- and fourth-place finishers, Deal Making and Adriano, respectively, are slated to run Saturday in the $400,000 Kent Breeders’ Cup Stakes (gr. IIT) at Delaware Park. The results of that race are worth checking prior to the Saranac.

Entered in both the Kent and Saranac is Mr Maccool, another Kentucky-bred son of Giant’s Causeway. A Donamire Farm homebred, Mr Maccool won the Jersey Derby over the turf at Monmouth Park last time out to remain unbeaten in three grass starts. The 1 1/16-mile race was on the undercard of Big Brown’s big win in the Haskell (gr. I).

Finishing fifth behind Big Brown was Nistle’s Crunch, who returns to the turf in the Saranac. Earlier this summer he was a distant second to Sailor’s Cap over a soft course in the Colonial Turf Cup Stakes (gr. IIIT) and third behind Tizdejavu over a yielding surface at Churchill Downs in the Crown Royal American Turf Stakes (gr. IIIT) on Kentucky Oaks day.

Saranac Stakes (gr. IIIT), 3-year-olds, 1 3/16 miles, turf, $100,000, to be run Sunday, Aug. 31; approximate post 5:22 p.m.
Post – Horse – Wgt – Jockey
1 – Vacation – 117 – Edgar Prado
2 – Mr Maccool – 121 – Eibar Coa
3 – Nistle’s Crunch – 117 – Robby Albarado
4 – Schopenhauer – 117 – Alan Garcia
5 – Ready’s Echo – 117 – John Velazquez
6 – Marlang – 123 – Richard Anthony Dos Ramos
7 – Shive’s Success – 117 – Javier Castellano
8 – Thou Swell – 117 – Ramon Dominguez

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