OTB Race Previews & Odds
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Las Vegas, NV - Another weekend of graded stakes action is in the books - the place to be this past weekend was Gulfstream Park in Hallandale, Florida. Five stakes races were run over the weekend including two Grade 1 tilts on Saturday. There was also a pretty big race at Santa Anita this past weekend. Let's recap all the action starting at the very busy Gulfstream Park.
The biggest race of the weekend - the Grade 1, $500,000 Donn Handicap went down on a busy Saturday at Gulfstream Park. It was lightly raced, Todd Pletcher trained Graydar that posted the win in just his fourth career start and first stakes try at 5-1 odds in wire-to-wire fashion. Bourbon Courage finished a nice second while Take Charge Indy was an OK third. 2-1 favorite Flat Out finished fourth, Csaba, Pool Play, Fast Falcon, Ducduc, Citrus Kid, and Ultimate Eagle completed the order of finish.
In the other Grade 1 race at Gulfstream on Saturday, 2-1 second choice Point of Entry upset 2011 Kentucky Derby winner and 4-5 favorite Animal Kingdom in the $300,000 Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap by 1 1/4 lengths for his fourth Grade 1 win of his career. Animal Kingdom's regular rider John Velazquez was on Point of Entry for the win in what is rumored to be Animal Kingdom's last race in North America. Unbridled Command finished third while Salto, Where's the Baby, and Film Making completed the order of finish.
The Grade 3 $150,000 Gulfstream Park Sprint Championship Stakes also went down on Gulfstream's Saturday card. Fort Loudon earned his first victory since last July at 7-2 odds holding of Swagger Jack by a half length at the wire. 2-1 favorite Bahamian Squall finished third while Close It Out, Good Morning Diva, Travelin Man, Fair Whit, and Big Grandpa completed the order of finish.
Also at Gulfstream Saturday the Grade 3, $150,000 Suwannee River Stakes took place for older fillies and mares. Channel Lady posted a wire-to-wire victory by three quarters of a length at 7-2 odds over Abaco - her fourth win in seven starts for trainer Todd Pletcher. Inglorious was a nose further back in third. Favorite Hard Not to Like finished fifth, trailing Kya One by a neck. Romacaca and Affair Dabbler completed the order of finish. Leading Astray and My Pal Chrisy were scratched.
The action at Gulfstream wasn't just confined to Saturday action - Sunday it hosted the Grade 3, $150,000 Hurricane Bertie Stakes. 5-2 favorite Golden Mystery did what many expected and posted a rather easy win by 3 1/2 lengths over Fantasy of Flight who stayed close all the way and got in for second. Nakano rallied late after trailing for most of the race and got up for third. Following Nakano under the wire in order were Catch a Thief, Emma's Encore, R Holiday Mood, Munnings Sister, Who Is Camille, and Applauding. Starship Truffles and Spectacular Sky were scratched.
At Santa Anita, Slim Shadey was the star in winning Saturday's $150,000 Grade 2 San Marcos Stakes in wire-to-wire fashion with Gary Stevens in the saddle. It was Stevens' first stakes win since 2005 at the Grade 2 Breeders'' Cup Handicap. Argentinean standout and 7-2 favorite Interaction finished second while All Squared Away was third. Completing the order of finish were Fire With Fire, Huntsville, Juniper Pass, Fast Track, Shaun Washington, Temple's Door, Richard's Kid, Bridge of Gold, and Golden Itiz.
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