Archives for August 21, 2017

Pletcher Team on Target for 2017 Travers Stakes

Source: NYRA

Trainer Todd Pletcher confirmed Kentucky Derby winner Always Dreaming and Belmont Stakes winner Tapwrit will be entered to run in the Grade 1, $1.25 million Travers presented by NYRA Bets. Curlin winner Outplay’s status will be determined on Tuesday, Pletcher said, adding that Outplay’s potential jockey assignment is also a factor in the decision.

“We’re definitely planning to run Always Dreaming and Tapwrit and we’ll make a decision tomorrow on Outplay,” Pletcher said from his barn Monday morning.

copyright AGameofSkill.comHall of Fame jockey John Velazquez has been the regular rider of Always Dreaming through his 3-year-old campaign and has ridden Outplay in his last two races. Jose Ortiz has been aboard Tapwrit in all five of the colt’s starts this year.

Pletcher has saddled a pair of Travers winners; Flower Alley in 2005 and Stay Thirsty in 2011. Should he have three entrants in the 148th running, for three separate ownership groups, Pletcher said the possible logistical issues of serving different interests should not be a problem.

“It’s really not that challenging. We’re training all three horses whether they are running in the race or not,” Pletcher said. “The owners are very understanding in these situations. Most of the owners I have also have horses with other trainers, so we’ve been in situations where I might be running a horse against one of theirs, so it’s really not an issue for us. Sometimes it gets a little dicier when you try to maneuver maidens into different races than it is in the big events.”

Pletcher said having multiple horses in a prestigious race can sometimes lessen the pressure.

“Sometimes when you only have one, you’re hoping you get there, but sometimes it’s a little safety net to have more than one,” Pletcher said. “But we don’t really look at it on those terms. We’re just happy that we are fortunate to have three horses who are good enough to be considered for the race.”

All three put in their final breezes before Travers Day on the Oklahoma training track Friday, with Always Dreaming working four furlongs in 49.60 seconds in company with Outplay and Tapwrit also putting in a half-mile in 50.24 seconds.

“My main concern was getting those final works in and with the weather being a little dicey, we wanted to get them in on a good surface and we were able to do that on Friday,” Pletcher said. “They [came out] of it well and once we got to that point, you just hope everything continues to go smoothly with the gate schooling and paddock schooling and routine gallops.”

AGOS Horses to Watch – 8/21/17

Arlington Park

Race#7 – G1 Secretariat – 1 1/4 turf – #6 – Taj Mahal

Taj Mahal = Ryan Moore made the trip across the pond for trainer Aidan O’Brien. He rated well and moved into the 2 path around the 1st turn. Continued to rate and was forced to swing out 6 wide making a strong late rally being forced to settle for 2nd money this day.

Race #8 – Bruce D Memorial – 1 mile AW – #10 – Society Beau

Society Beau = James Graham had the call for trainer Neil Howard and was far back in the field shortly after the start. His efforts weaved through traffic and uncorked a strong late rally making this race a to follow right back to the windows for good things to come.

Race #9 – G3 American St. Leger – 1 11/16 turf – #8 Bullards Alley

Bullards Alley = Irad Ortiz aboard for trainer Tim Glyshaw. All reports had this runner looking great coming into the race and was forced wide around every turn in the race. He was forced to check at the 5/8th’s and appeared to call it a day after a taxing trip. – You can bet dollars to donuts you’ll see a much better effort next up.

Race #10 – G1 Beverly D – 1 3/16 turf – #5 – Grand Jete

Grand Jete = Joel Rosario in the saddle for trainer Chad Brown. He rated well from the start and tried to kick out for clear sailing being forced to wait until the 1/8th pole where he finished up with a very strong late run. – This race is a sign of very good things to come.

Belterra Park

8/12/17

Race #8 – Claiming – 6f on the main – #3 – Dancing Ava

Dancing Ava = Perry Ouzts in the irons for trainer Larry Smith where they win (21%) as a team. He broke slowly from the gate and made a very strong late rally up the rail settling to be the bridesmaid this day.

Saratoga Race course

8/12/17

Race #7 – Mdn Sp Wt – 7f on the main – #2 – Coal Truth

Coal Truth = Javier Castellano aboard for trainer Chad Brown this day. They were sent off the odds-on favorite and hit the side of the stall upon leaving the starting gate. After grabbing his mount and getting back on course he was forced 6 wide at the top of the stretch and was running strong late in the lane.

Race #9 – Allowance Optional Claiming – 6f on the main – #9 – Cerro

Cerro = John Velasquez aboard for trainer Bruce Levine. They were 3-4 wide going into the first turn and were sent off the post time favorite at race time. – This is one of the best gambler’s move to come right back and make repeat play.