Hollywood Turf Cup at Hollywood Park

Dave Bond | OTB Writer

Las Vegas, NV - Betfair Hollywood Park will be the scene of the Grade 2 Hollywood Turf Cup this Saturday, December 15. Horses three years old and upward will be featured as they go 1 1/2 miles on Hollywood Park's turf track in search of their share of the $250,000 purse.

A strong field of 10 has been confirmed for the Hollywood Turf Cup which is race 7 on Hollywood Park's Saturday card. Post time is 3:35 PM. Here is a brief look into the past performances of all 10 combatants ahead of this Grade 2 stakes race.

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2012 Hollywood Turf Cup Race Favorites

Grandeur - three year old Irish bred gelding made his North American debut with an impressive win in the Grade 2 Twilight Derby at Santa Anita November 2 and followed that up with another very good result - a second as favorite in the Grade 1 Hollywood Derby behind Unbridled Command last time out here November 25. He has won three of his last five starts and is firmly in the Hollywood Turf Cup radar and has a win and a second in his only two North American starts after a good career overseas.

Bourbon Bay - Bourbon Bay comes into the Hollywood Turf Cup off a disappointing eighth in the Grade 2 John Henry Turf after a two race win streak - the Grade 2 San Juan Capistrano Handicap here in April and the Grade 2 San Luis Rey here in March. Bourbon Bay hadn't raced in five months prior to the John Henry but was in the best form of his career before the layoff. He has nine career wins in 27 starts and two wins in four starts in 2012. Bourbon Bay finished second in this race last year and will be looking to better that performance this year on a course that he has yet to claim victory on but has finished second or third in five of six starts.

Hollywood Turf Cup 2012 | Remaining Field Entries

Slim Shadey - had looked good before a fifth as favorite in the Grade 1 United Nations Stakes at Monmouth on July 7 and another fifth in the Grade 1 Eddie Read. He won the Grade 2 John Henry Turf Championship two back on September 30 but followed that up with a tepid eighth in the Breeders' Cup Turf. He had three straight second place finishes earlier this year including the Grade 1 Charles Whittingham to Acclamation, in the Grade 1 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic at Churchill Downs and the Grade 1 San Luis Stakes on March 25. Slim Shadey has been up and down but his has shown some serious form at times this year.

Optimizer - finished eleventh in the Kentucky Derby, sixth in the Preakness and tenth in the Belmont Stakes and finished the fourth in the Grade 2 Virginia Derby after that. He had won two straight before the recent Breeders' Cup however - the Grade 3 Kent Stakes at Delaware Park and an Allowance Optional Claiming before that but came up with a disappointing eleventh in the Breeders' Cup. He has raced to a fifth in the Grade 3 River City Handicap since the Breeders' Cup.

Kindergarden Kid - won the Grade 3 Sycamore Stakes October 18 at this distance after a pair of decent thirds - at the Grade 1 Joe Hirsch Invitational and the Grade 3 Kentucky Turf before that. Last time out was a sixth In the Breeders' Cup Turf for trainer Peter Miller. He has placed in seven of 10 starts in 2012 with a win, two seconds and four third place finishes.

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Fire With Fire - made his graded stakes debut with a very good third in the Grade 2 Del Mar Handicap after six straight Allowance races produced three seconds and a third place finish. He followed his Del Mar Handicap performance with a sixth in the Grade 2 John Henry Turf Championship September 30 and a second last time out in an Allowance Optional Claiming on this track November 10. Fire With Fire hasn't tasted victory in over a year - an Allowance at Saratoga.

Interaction - Former Argentinean Horse of the Year Interaction has yet to find the form that made him a star in his native land. He had a win in an Allowance Optional Claiming here on June 16 and a decent second to Acclamation in the Grade 1 Eddie Read Stakes on July 21 but had a disappointing fifth in the Grade 2 Del Mar Handicap August 25. He had an OK third in the Grade 2 John Henry Turf at Santa Anita September 30 but followed that with an ugly seventh in the Grade 2 Citation Handicap last time out here November 23.

Grassy - is a multiple graded stakes winner that returned to a fifth in an Allowance Optional Claiming at Del Mar August 30 after nearly 10 months away. He won the Grade 2 Bowling Green Handicap a year ago to prove that he has what it takes to be competitive on Sunday. Grassy was fourth in the Grade 2 John Henry Turf September 30 and most recently finished a very good second in the Breeders' Cup Marathon.

Private Affair - endured over a year off and returned with a win in an Allowance here November 22. He has four wins and five seconds in 11 career starts and if rust doesn't rule the day, he could surprise Saturday.

Tiz Gianni - makes his graded stakes debut for trainer John Sherreffs after two Allowance scores in his last four starts. In between those wins was a fifth in an Allowance and a seventh two back in the minor Sunland Park Handicap.

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