OTB Race Previews
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Las Vegas, NV - Fair Grounds Race Course in New Orleans, Louisiana will be the scene of the 71st running of the Grade 3 LeComte Stakes on Saturday, January 17. Some of the best three year olds in the land will be after the winner's share of the $200,000 purse and the 10 qualifying points toward the Kentucky Derby in May when they go one mile and seventy yards on Fair Grounds main track.
11 sophomores have been confirmed for the LeComte - race 11 on Fair Grounds busy Saturday card. Post time is 5:24 PM. Here is a peek into the past performances of all 11 combatants for this important prep for the $300,000 Risen Star Stakes February 21.
Eagle - has hit the board in all four career starts for trainer Neil Howard - two wins, a second and a third place finish. Last time out was a respectable third by less than a half length behind El Kabeir in his stakes debut - the Grade 2 Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes at Churchill Downs November 29 after an Allowance score at Keeneland in October, a second in an Allowance Optional Claiming score at Churchill Downs in September and a maiden score at first asking in July. Brian Joseph Hernandez gets the call from an unfavorable outside post looking to keep Eagle's impressive career trending upward.
Another Lemon Drop - son of Lemon Drop Kid has four career starts for trainer Philip Bauer with two wins and a third place finish. He enters off a terrific five length Allowance Optional Claiming score on this track December 19 which followed a third to the terrific Dortmund in a similar race at Churchill Downs November 29 and a maiden score in his second career start at Churchill Downs. He, like Eagle has been competitive every time out and is expected to be again Saturday. Calvin Borel has the mount for post 10 Saturday.
International Star - Michael Maker trained colt looked good early in his career - a nice win in the Grade 3 Grey Stakes at Woodbine October 5 after a good second in the Grade 2 With Anticipation Stakes at Saratoga in August, a respectable second in the minor Rockville Centre Stakes at Belmont Park July 13 and a maiden score in his debut on that same track June 21. He has failed to place in his last two starts however - a fourth last time out behind Eagle in the Grade 2 Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes November 29 followed a troubled ninth in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf. He will be looking to rediscover his form from the summer/fall of 2014 with Miguel Mena in the saddle from the rail.
Tiznow R J - will make his stakes debut Saturday for trainer Steve Asmussen off a maiden score by an astounding 13 lengths in his third career start - on this track over this distance December 12. Before that win were consecutive third in MSW races at Churchill Downs. He has been trending upward and will have Robby Albarado in the irons from post 2.
Savoy Stomp - Todd Pletcher pupil was fifth two starts back in his stakes debut - the Grade 2 Nashua Stakes at Aqueduct November 2 and followed that with a third in an Allowance Optional Claiming at Gulfstream Park in November. He will have the legend Mike Smith guiding him from post 6 Saturday as Savoy Stomp looks to make a little noise his first start around two turns.
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War Story - Tom Amoss trained gelding will look to remain perfect in his career - he has two starts with two wins. Last time out was an Allowance Optional Claiming score by 2 3/4 lengths on this track which followed a maiden win at first asking - at Churchill Downs November 1. James Graham has been tabbed to keep the roll going from gate 4.
Four Leaf Chief - Steven Flint trained colt has three wins and a third place finish in five career starts but steps into graded stakes company for the first time Saturday. Last time out was a third in an Allowance Optional Claiming here December 28 which followed a nice win in the minor Louisiana Legacy Stakes at Delta Downs in November, a fourth in the minor Evangeline Downs Star Stakes and another minor stakes score - the Louisiana Cup Juvenile Stakes in August. He has been competitive so far and will hope to remain so with Florent Geroux aboard from post 3.
Hero of Humor - has five career starts for trainer Gennadi Dorochenko with a win and a second place finish but has not looked good lately. Last time out was a ninth in the minor Spectacular Bid Stakes at Gulfstream Park January 3 which followed a tenth in the minor Smooth Air Stakes at Gulfstream park West November 29. He did break maiden in September in his second career start and was second in an Allowance Optional Claiming at Gulfstream Park West but has struggled in stakes company. He looks to snap the slump with Alexander Reznikov in the irons from post 5.
Runhappy - will race for just the second time for trainer Laura Wohlers - his first start was a good one - a maiden score at Turfway Park December 28. Jockey Shaun Bridgmohan will be in charge from post 7 in Runhappy's stakes debut.
Killingit - will make his stakes debut Saturday for trainer Laura Wohlers off a fourth in an Allowance Optional Claiming at Turfway Park, a maiden score in his third career start and a third and a second respectively in MSW races to start his career. Jamie Theriot rides in Killingit's step up from gate 8.
Dekabrist - Gennadi Dorochenko trained colt had two wins in his first six career starts but has failed to place in his seven four overall. Last time out was an eighth in the minor Mucho Macho Man Stakes at Gulfstream Park January 3 which followed a fourth in the minor Paco Stakes at Tampa Bay December 29, a fifth in the Grade 3 Delta Downs Jackpot, an ugly eleventh in the Grade 1 Claibrone Breeders' Futurity October 4, an eighth in the Grade 3 Iroquois Stakes September 6 and a fifth in the Grade 1 Hopeful Stakes September. He has run in graded stakes company four times already but hasn't done any damage so far. Hopes are that jockey Sal Gonzalez can change all that from post 9.
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