Las Vegas, NV - The Grade 3 Excelsior Stakes comes our way this Saturday, March 23 from Aqueduct Racetrack in Queens, New York. A purse of $150,000 will be on the line for horses three years old and upward willing to go one mile and one furlong on Aqueduct's main track.
A field of seven has been confirmed for the Excelsior Stakes - race 9 on Aqueduct's Saturday card. Post time is 4:52 PM. Let's take a look into the past performances of all eight combatants for this Grade 3 stakes.
Last Gunfighter - Chad Brown trained colt enters the Excelsior on a four race win streak including two minor stakes scores - the Evening Attire last time out here January 19 over Isn't He Perfect and the Raymond Earl Stakes two back by 4 3/4 lengths December 9 on this track. He has placed in all eight career starts - those four wins, two seconds and two third place finishes.
Ruler On Ice - Ruler on Ice had a very good 2011 with a win at the Belmont Stakes and the third place finish in the Breeders' Cup Classic at Churchill Downs to go along with numerous seconds and thirds at multiple graded stakes events. In 2012 Ruler on Ice started four races with disappointing results - a eighth in the Grade 1 Donn Handicap, a seventh in an Allowance Optional Claiming, a second in a similar race at Delaware Park on August 25 and a distant tenth in the Jockey Club Gold Cup at Belmont Park in September. After four months away he returned January 30 to a win in an Allowance Optional Claiming here.
Mordi's Miracle - Todd Pletcher trained colt will make his stakes debut Saturday after seven starts produced two wins (a MSW three back and an Allowance Optional Claiming two back) and one second place finish which came last time out in an Allowance Optional Claiming here March 2.
Colizeo - Graded stakes winner and Rudy Rodriguez trainee recorded his first win in nearly two years last time out - an Allowance Optional Claiming here February 10. Last year he had five starts and place in just one - an Allowance Optional Claiming at Churchill Downs in November. Colizeo has 23 career starts with six wins, three seconds and five third place finishes.
Joan's Choice - won the Starter Stakes in wire-to-wire fashion last time out here over Isn't He Perfect after a third in an Allowance Optional Claiming here January 20. Prior to those money finishes was four straight races without placing. Joan's Choice has 23 career starts with six wins, three seconds and four third place finishes.
Heart Butte - Todd Pletcher pupil raced in graded stakes company for the first time last time out and finished ninth in the Grade 3 Tom Fool here March 2 after 13 months away. He had a third in the minor John B. Campbell Handicap at Laurel Park last February 18 and a fourth in the minor Evening Attire Stakes here January 28. He ended 2011 on a four race win streak including a pair of minor stakes races - one coming in the 2011 edition of the Evening Attire here way back in January 2011.
Isn't He Perfect - had 13 starts in 2012 and placed in his last four - all minor stakes action. A good second in the Evening Attire Stakes behind Last Gunfighter started his 2013 campaign here January 19 after a pair of thirds at Aqueduct in December. Last time out was a second in the Starter Stakes here February 16 after a disappointing fifth in the Grade 3 Toboggan Stakes at Aqueduct February 2. Isn`t He Perfect has five wins, eight seconds and five third place finishes in 33 career starts but has been in the money in 12 of his last 14 races.