OTB Race Previews
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Las Vegas, NV - Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie, Texas will play host to the Grade 3 Texas Mile Stakes this Saturday, April 26. Horses three years old and upward will be featured in this one mile test as they chase this winner's share of the $200,000 purse on Lone Star's dirt track.
A field of nine have been confirmed for the Texas Mile - race 8 on Lone Star's Saturday card. Post time is 9:51 PM. Let's take a peek into the past performances of all nine combatants for this Grade 3 stakes.
Taptowne - has placed in 10 straight starts (four graded stakes) ahead of this weekend including wins in the minor Swatara Stakes at Penn National November 27, and the minor West Virginia Governor's Stakes August 3. He also own seconds in the Grade 3 Cornhusker Handicap and the Grade 3 Ack Ack Handicap September 7 behind Pants On Fire. Last time out was a third in the Grade 3 Razorback at Oaklawn Park March 15. He has been ultra-competitive each and every time out the last year and is the 5-2 morning line favorite for the Texas Mile. Calvin Borel rides the 121 pound co-top weight from post. 5
Bourbon Courage - hasn't won since the Grade 2 Super Derby in September, 2012 but has placed in eight of 10 starts since, including thirds in the Grade 2 Alysheba Stakes and Grade 2 New Orleans Handicap, another third in the Grade 1 Clark Handicap November 23, 2012 and more recently a third in the minor but competitive Harlan's Holiday Stakes at Gulfstream in December. He has two starts this year - a second last time out in an Allowance at Oaklawn Park and a fourth in the Grade 1 Donn Handicap February 9. Bourbon Courage has just three wins, five seconds and four thirds in 16 career starts but goes off as the 3-1 second choice Saturday looking to get over the $1 million career earning mark with Leandro Goncalves aboard from gate 6.
Grand Contender - Thomas Amoss trained gelding is coming off a gate-to-wire 6 3/4 length win in the minor Borgata Stakes at delta Downs March 15 after a very respectable second behind Bradester in the Grade 3 Mineshaft Handicap at Fair Grounds February 22 - his only graded stakes race to date. He has placed in nine of his last 10 starts overall with five wins over that span and he looked great in his only step up in competition. Grand Contender is certainly worthy of his name this week as he is sent off at 4-1 odds from post 3 with Richard Eramia in the saddle.
Forest Mouse - Henry Dominguez pupil had a string if six wins and five seconds in 11 races that lasted into January 2013 before two graded stakes starts derailed the streak. In February 2013 Forest Mouse raced to a sixth in the Grade 2 Arcadia Stakes and followed that with a fifth in the Grade 1 Frank E. Kilroe Mile in March. Since that time he has started a new streak- three straight wins ahead of the Texas Mile - two Allowance Optional Claiming and the minor Sunland Park Handicap in April 2013. He may not be the biggest name but Forest Mouse's results are impressive. He is the 5-1 third choice and lines up in gate 4 with Ry Eikleberry in the reins.
Texas Mile Stakes betting at Lone Star Park with OffTrackBetting.com
Stachys - multiple stakes winner has just one victory since September 2012 (13 races) - that coming five back in an Allowance Optional Claiming at Oaklawn Park in November. Last time out was a third in an Allowance on that track after a fourth in the minor Essex Handicap also at Oaklawn Park in February. He has 38 career starts with 10 wins, five seconds and seven third place finishes but enters the Texas Mile in sketchy form. He is listed at 8-1 odds and leaves from the rail with Luis Quinonez aboard.
Skip the Pinot - has a win, two seconds and a third place finish in his last four starts overall - the win coming two back in an Allowance Optional Claiming at Fair Grounds January 23. He is coming off a second in the minor Dixie Poker Ace Stakes on that track March 29 and he also had a second in the minor Costa Rising Stakes January 11. He steps into graded stakes company for the first time Saturday with four wins, three seconds and three third place finishes in 12 career starts. Roman Chapa rides from post 7 at 12-1 odds.
Texas Air - has two wins, two seconds and a third place finish in his last five starts. He is coming off a third in the minor Maxxam Gold Cup at Sam Houston March 1 after two straight wins - the minor Star of Texas Stakes at Sam Houston in January and an Allowance Optional Claiming in December. He makes his graded stakes debut Saturday in the best form of his 26 race career. Dakota Woods gets the call from gate 2 at 15-1 odds.
Proud Strike - Steve Asmussen trained colt is coming off a pair of seconds in Allowance Optional Claiming races the last few months. He does have two wins in his 10 race career - a MSW in January 2013 and an Allowance Optional Claiming in June but his graded stakes results leave something to be desired. He had a tenth in the Grade 2 Louisiana Derby March 30, 2013 and was eighth before that in the Grade 2 Risen Star Stakes at Fair Grounds in February 2013. M. Clifton Berry will be in the saddle from the outside post at 15-1 odds.
Smack Ridge - had two straight wins this past summer - the best of which was in the minor Winsham Lad Stakes at Sunland Park January 5. He went on to a third in the minor Curribot Handicap on that same track in February and was most recently fifth in an Allowance at Sunland Park in March. He has 29 career starts with nine wins, three seconds and four third place finishes and is the longest shot in the field at 20-1 odds.
Race 8 on Lone Star Park's Saturday card with a Post Time of 9:51 PM.
|1||Stachys||L. Quinonez||M. Biehler|
|2||Texas Air||D. Wood||A. Milligan|
|3||Grand Contender||R. Eramia||T. Amoss|
|4||Forest Mouse||R. Eikleberry||H. Dominguez|
|5||Taptowne||C. Borel||T. Glyshaw|
|6||Bourbon Courage||L. Goncalves||K. Gorder|
|7||Skip the Pinot||R. Chapa||A. Leggio, Jr.|
|8||Smack Ridge||G. Murphy||S. Buechler|
|9||Proud Strike||M. Berry||S. Asmussen|