OTB Race Previews
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Las Vegas, NV - Aqueduct Racetrack in Queens, New York will play host to the Grade 3 Gotham Stakes on Saturday, March 7. A group of three year olds will be after the winner's share of the $400,000 purse and the 50 qualifying points toward the Kentucky Derby in May when they go 1 1/16 miles on Aqueduct's main track.
A field of 10 Derby Hopefuls will take to the track in the Gotham Stakes - race 9 on Aqueduct's Saturday card. Post time is 4:50 PM. Here is a brief look into the past performances of all 10 entries for this important and lucrative Grade 3 stakes - a local prep for the $1 million Wood Memorial April 4.
El Kabeir 8-5 - John Terranova trained colt is the most experienced of all the entries and the most impressive - he sits fourth in points on the Road to the Kentucky Derby. Last time out was a second in the Grade 3 Withers Stakes here February 7 which followed a terrific 4 3/4 length win in the Grade 3 Jerome Stakes on this track January 3 with a Beyer Speed Figure of 95 and a nice win in gate-to-wire fashion in the Grade 2 Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes at Churchill Downs November 29 - with a 94 Beyer Speed Figure. Before that was a good second in the Grade 2 Nashua Stakes on this track November 2, a fourth in the Grade 1 Champagne Stakes on an undesirable sloppy Belmont Park track in October and an eye-opening 10 length maiden win at Saratoga. He has three wins, two seconds and a third in seven career starts and hasn't been worse than second in his last four starts. El Kabeir will have Charles Lopez in the saddle as the one to beat from gate 4.
Classy Class 7-2 - Kiaran McLaughlin pupil makes his fourth career start Saturday. His first start was a good one - an impressive 4 length maiden score at Belmont Park with a 88 Beyer Speed Figure on October 25 and his second was an OK fourth after pressing the pace in the Grade 2 Remsen on this track November 29. Last time out was a respectable third, right behind El Kabeir in the Grade 3 Withers Stakes on this track February 7. He departs from post 2 Saturday looking to upset El Kabeir as the second betting choice with Junior Alavado aboard.
Blame Jim 5-1 - Todd Pletcher entry has two career starts with a win and a second place finish - last time out was a runner-up finish in an Allowance Optional Claiming at Aqueduct February 8 with a respectable 88 Beyer Speed Figure. It followed a maiden score at first asking - at Saratoga July 19. He, like so many entries in the Gotham steps into stakes company for the first time- from the outside post with meet-leading rider Jose Ortiz aboard.
Dontbetwithbruno 5-1 - Todd Pletcher trained colt has three career starts (all MSW) and finally broke maiden last time out - on this track February 1. Before that was a second and a fourth respectively in races also at Aqueduct. Dontbetwithbruno make a huge step up in competition from post 2 with Manuel Franco guiding him.
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Lieutenant Colonel 5-1 - will make just his second career start for trainer Chad Brown off a maiden victory at first asking - at Aqueduct February 7. Kendrick Carmouche has been tabbed to ride this lightly raced entry from post 5 as the co-third choice.
Uninfluenced 5-1 - Todd Pletcher trained colt looks for his first win on Saturday - he had a second place finish last time out and a fourth in his debut - both results on this track. Uninfluenced hopes to finally break through Saturday in a huge step up in class - from gate 8 with Fernando Jara in the reins.
Tencendur 5-1 - George Weaver trained colt made his stakes debut February 7 and finished an OK fourth in the Grade 3 Withers Stakes on this track. Before that was a maiden score here January 19 in his second career start. His first was a third place finish in a similar race here December 12. Cornelio Velasquez has the mount from gate 9 Saturday.
Combat Diver 12-1 - Gary Contessa trained colt has a win and a second place finish in four career starts - the other results were tenth place finishes. Last time out was an OK second in the minor Miracle Wood Stakes at Laurel Park February 16 which followed a tenth in the Grade 2 Remsen in November and a maiden score in his second career start - at Belmont Park in October. He hopes for his first stakes win in three tries Saturday from the rail. Sheldon Russell rides.
Tiz Shea D 15-1 - Bill Mott trainee won his only career start - a maiden score at Parx February 7. He hopes his success translates to stakes company when he departs from post 6 with Taylor Rice in the irons.
Toasting Master 20-1 - has five career starts for trainer Dale Romans and looked good earlier in his career - two wins and a second place finish. His last two starts have resulted in off-the-board finishes. Last time out was a fourth in the minor OBS Championship Stakes at Ocala Training Ctr after a sixth in the minor Spectacular Bid Stakes at Aqueduct in January. Toasting Master looks to place in stakes company for the first time Saturday - from post 7 with Angel Arroyo in the reins.
Race 9 on Aqueduct Racetrack's Saturday card with a Post Time of 4:50 PM.
|1||Dontbetwithbruno||M. Franco||T. Pletcher|
|1A||Uninfluenced||F. Jara||T. Pletcher|
|1X||Blame Jim||J. Ortiz||T. Pletcher|
|2||Combat Diver||S. Russell||G. Contessa|
|3||Classy Class||J. Alvarado||K. McLaughlin|
|4||El Kabeir||C. Lopez||J. Terranova, II|
|5||Lieutenant Colonel||K. Carmouche||C. Brown|
|6||Tiz Shea D||T. Rice||W. Mott|
|7||Toasting Master||A. Arroyo||D. Romans|
|8||Tencendur||C. Velasquez||G. Weaver|
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