Las Vegas, NV - Belmont Park in Elmont, New York will play host to the Grade 3 Fort Marcy Stakes this Saturday, May 2. A purse of $150,000 will be on the line for horses four years old and upward willing to go 1 1/8 miles on Belmont Park's turf track.
Nine older entries have been confirmed for the Fort Marcy - race 10 on Belmont Park's busy Saturday card. Post time is 5:35 PM. Let's take a peek into the past performances of all nine combatants for this Grade 3 stakes.
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2015 Fort Marcy Stakes Race Favorite Entries
Big Blue Kitten - two-time Grade 1 winner won the Grade 1 United Nations Stakes at Monmouth Park July 6, 2013 and went on to a disappointing eighth in the Breeders' Cup Turf. He had a good second behind Little Mike in the 2013 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic and a win in the Grade 1 Sword Dancer at Saratoga August 17 as well. In 2014 he won the minor Lure Stakes at Saratoga and followed that with a second in the Grade 3 Cliff Hanger Stakes August 24, a fourth in the 2014 Grade 1 Hoe Hirsch Turf Classic and consecutive runner up finishes to end his year - the Grade 2 Red Smith Handicap last time out in August and the Grade 1 Pattison Canadian International in October. Big Blue Kitten has 11 wins, six seconds and four third place finishes in 24 career starts and makes his 2015 debut Saturday in decent form from gate 8 with Joe Bravo in the irons.
Hyper - Chad Brown entry has 23 career starts with 10 wins, six seconds and two third place finishes and hits the track for the first time since an eighth place finish in the Grade 3 Red Smith Handicap way back in November, 2013. Before that he was scorching hot - placing in his other eight of his starts in 2013 including a good second in the prestigious Grade 1 Pattison Canadian International October 27, a win in the Grade 2 Bowling Green Handicap at Belmont Park September 7, a win in the minor John's Call Stakes at Saratoga July 31 and a very nice second in his graded stakes debut - the Grade 2 Colonial Turf Cup in June. Hyper hits the track for the first time in nearly 17 months Saturday but has shown good form in the past. Jockey Jose Lezcano has been named to shake off the rust from gate 4 Saturday.
Fort Marcy Stakes 2015 | Remaining Contenders
V.E. Day - James Jerkins trained colt was last seen running a disappointing eleventh in the Breeders' Cup Classic - a result that followed a fifth in the Grade 1 Jockey Club Gold Cup in September. He made his graded stakes debut one to remember however- a win in the Grade 1 Travers Stakes at Saratoga August 23. That win followed three straight victories including the minor Curlin Stakes July 25, an Allowance and maiden score. Overall V.E. Day has four wins and a second place finish in eight career starts but hopes to place in a race for the first time since August. Rajiv Maragh will attempt to guide VE Day back to the promise land from post 7 Saturday.
Mr Speaker - won the Grade 3 Lexington Stakes and Grade 1 Belmont Derby Invitational in 2014 for trainer Shug McGaughey but has throw in come clunkers as well. In fact he has failed to place in his last three starts overall - a fourth last time in an Allowance at Keeneland April 15 followed a sixth in the Grade 3 Hill Prince Stakes here in October and a fifth in the Grade 1 Travers in August. Mr Speaker has four wins, a second and a third place finish in 12 career starts but hasn't been great lately. Cornelio Velasquez gets the call as Mr Speaker attempts to rediscover his form from post 5.
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Divine Oath - Todd Pletcher trained colt has five wins, a second and a third place finish in 11 career starts but has failed to place in his last two - a fourth last time out in the Grade 2 Mervin H. Muniz Jr. Handicap followed a fifth in the Grade 2 Mac Diarmida Stakes in February. He did look good before that however - three wins in his previous five starts including the Grade 3 WL McKnight Handicap December 27 and in the Grade 3 Kent Stakes in September at Hollywood Park. He also posted a good third in the Grade 2 Twilight Derby in October and a nice win in the Grade 3 American Derby at Arlington July 12. Divine Oath has been impressive at times but hasn't been sparkling in his last two starts. Edgar Prado will be in charge hoping to get Divine Oath back on track- from post 6.
Middleburg - Christophe Clement trainee makes his stakes debut having placed in 11 of 12 career starts - four wins, five seconds and two third place finishes. He enters on a two race win streak - both Allowance Optional Claiming races. Those results followed a string of four runner-up finishes. Middleburg has improved every time out and looks ready for his stakes debut Saturday. Kendrick Carmouche has been tabbed to ride from the rail.
Unbridled Ocean - Bill Mott trainee has placed in his last two starts - a second last time out in an Allowance Optional Claiming March 6 followed nine months off and an Allowance Optional Claiming score on this track back in June. Before the win was a fifth in the 2014 Fort Marcy Stakes, a third in an Allowance at Keeneland April 5 and a fourth in his graded stakes debut - the Grade 3 Canadian Turf Stakes at Gulfstream. Unbridled Ocean has been up and down so far in his career but looks decent ahead of this weekend. He hopes for his first stakes score this weekend from post 2 with Fernando Jara aboard.
Howe Great - had an impressive streak of four straight wins in 2013 and had some good results after that to go along with some poor efforts. He raced for the first time in 11 months December 13 and finished sixth in the minor El Prado Stakes after consecutive sevenths at this time last year - in the 2014 Grade 2 Ft. Lauderdale Stakes and the Grade 3 Red Smith Handicap in November, 2013. Last time out was another poor result - an twelfth in the Grade 2 Ft. Lauderdale Stakes back in January at Gulfstream Park. How Great hasn't been great the last 17 months - his best result over that time was a sixth place finish. Angel Arroyo will be in the saddle hoping to get Howe Great back to his 2013 form - from post 3.
Sky Blazer -finished sixth in this race last year and has been mostly disappointing since. Last time out was a fourth in an Allowance April 4 after a seventh in the Grade 3 Canadian Turf Stakes in September and an Allowance Optional Claiming score in January. He did finish third in the Grade 3 Bowling Green Handicap in July but has placed in just two of six starts since. Sky Blazer enters in less-than-spectacular form and leaves from the outside post with Taylor Rice in the saddle.
2015 Fort Marcy Stakes Entries & Odds
Race 10 on Belmont Park's Saturday card with a Post Time of 5:35 PM.
|1||Hyper||J. Lezcano||C. Brown|
|1A||Big Blue Kitten||J. Bravo||C. Brown|
|2||Middleburg||K. Carmouche||C. Clement|
|3||Unbridled Ocean||F. Jara||W. Mott|
|4||Howe Great||A. Arroyo||T. Bush|
|5||Mr Speaker||C. Velasquez||C. McGaughey III|
|6||Divine Oath||E. Prado||T. Pletcher|
|7||V. E. Day||R. Maragh||J. Jerkens|
|8||Sky Blazer||T. Rice||B. Tagg|