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Las Vegas, NV - Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, New York kicks off a busy week of racing on Thursday, August 27 when the Grade 1 New York Turf Writers Cup Handicap will be contested. A Hurdle Handicap For Four Year Olds And Upward, the Turf Writers' Cup will have a purse of $150,000 for those willing to go 2 3/8 miles on Saratoga's turf track.
10 quality entries have been confirmed for the New York Turf Writers Cup Handicap - the first race on Saratoga's Saturday card. Post time is 1:00 PM. Here is a look into the past performances of all 10 entries for this Grade 1 stakes.
Demonstrative - reigning Eclipse Award winner and two time winner of this race including last year has been terrific the last 13 months - eight starts with five wins, a second and two third place finishes. Last time out was one of the thirds - the Grade 1 AP Smithwick Memorial Steeplechase here August 6 after he failed to provide his patented late kick. That followed wins in his only other two starts this year - an Allowance in July and the Grade 1 Calvin Houghland Iroquois Hurdle Stakes in May. He has 42 career starts with 13 wins - four Grade 1 wins last year alone, eight seconds and seven third place finishes and enters in the best form of his career. Demonstrative hopes to remain one of the most dominant steeplechasers in North America Thursday when he leaves from gate 6 as the 156 pound highweight with Robert Walsh in the reins.
Divine Fortune - 2013 Eclipse Award Champion Steeplechaser has failed to place in his two starts this year - a fifth last time out in the Grade 1 AP Smithwick Memorial Steeplechase on this track August 6 followed a fourth in the Grade 1 Calvin Houghland Iroquois Hurdle Stakes in May - both results came after setting the pace and fading. He did have two Grade 1 wins and a second in five races in 2014 but also posted two DNFs as well. Despite a couple of unflattering results this year Divine Fortune still comes with a ton of hype and is expected to break the slump sooner than later. Darren Nagle gets the call from post 2 Thursday.
All the Way Jose - last year's Novice Champion had a stretch of three wins and three seconds in six starts in 2014 - the best f which was a win in the minor Foxbrook Champion Hurdle Stales in October. He has two starts this year - a DNF after losing his rider at Charlotte in the minor Queen's Cup MPC Chase Hurdle Stakes in April and a fourth after getting DQ'd from third last time out in the minor Marcellus Frost Hurdle Stakes in May. All the Way Jose has 12 career starts with three wins and four second place finishes, he is one to keep an eye on and will be ridden by William McCarthy from post 9.
Syros - makes his graded stakes debut Thursday after 27 career starts yielded six wins, five seconds and four third place finishes. He had runner-up finishes in three straight minor stakes races this past winter and won the minor Marcellus Frost Hurdle Stakes at Percy Warner in May. Last time out was a slight step back - a fourth in the minor Jonathan Kiser Novice Stakes here August 3. Syros has placed in 10 of his last 12 starts overall and looks for a huge breakthrough Thursday. Star Irish jockey Danny Mullins rides from gate 4.
Bob Le Beau - Irish bred gelding was OK at home but has posted some OK results since shipping. He has two wins and a second place finish in seven starts in the States with two DNFs scattered in there. He enters off a fourth in the Grade 1 AP Smithwick Memorial Steeplechase Stakes here August 6 after consecutive wins including the Grade 3 National Hunt Hurdle Cup in May. He has placed in three of his last five starts and could be a factor here. Jack Doyle has the mount from the outside post 10.
Schoodic - makes his graded stakes debut Thursday off a decent second in the minor Queen's CUP MPC Chase Hurdle Stakes at Charlotte in April. It followed a DNF in October. He did win the minor Michael G. Walsh Novice Stakes on this track in October but has been inconsistent in his career. Schoodic has 14 career starts with four wins, a second and two third place finishes. Paddy Young rides from post 7.
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All Together - consistent David Jacobson trained gelding has 52 career starts with nine wins, 14 seconds and seven third place finishes and will be looking for his first graded stakes score Thursday. He has placed in five of his last six starts however including a win in the minor W. Gary Baker Memorial Stakes in October and consecutive seconds in graded stakes action - the Grade 3 David L. Zeke Ferguson Memorial and the Temple Gwathmey Hurdle Handicap in April. He enters off a fourth in an Allowance Optional Claiming here August 5 after a second in an Allowance in July and an OK third on the Grade 2 David Semmes Memorial Stakes in May. All Together has been very competitive the last 10 months and hopes to continue that trend with Ross Geraghty in the saddle from post 3.
Hinterland - French bred Jack Fisher trained gelding makes his first North American start Thursday and his first start of 2015 as well. He has five wins, six seconds and two third place finishes in 18 career starts and was last seen posting a DNF in December - he also had a DNF in November as well. Hinterland did win a couple of stakes races in 2013 but has placed in just one of five starts since with three DNFs over that span. He looks to change his luck around in his first start in nine months when he leaves from the rail with Sean McDermott in the reins.
Alajmal - won the Grade 1 Colonial Cup Stakes in November - the only time he's placed in his last eight starts! He enters off a fourth in a MSW here August 16 and a ninth in a similar race in June. He has four wins, a second and three third place finishes in 21 career starts but hasn't been all that trustworthy lately. Bernard Dalton has the mount from gate 8.
Charminister - Irish bred Cyril Murphy trained gelding has six wins, six seconds and four third place finishes in 24 career starts. He finished second in this race in 2012 and posted a DNF last year. Last time out was a third in an Allowance July 12 after a Handicap score at Percy Warner in May. Charminister will be after his first graded stakes score Sunday when he departs from post 5 with Carol Ann Sloan guiding him.
Race 1 on Saratoga Race Course's Thursday card with a Post Time of 1:00 PM.
|1||Hinterland (FR)||S. McDermott||J. Fisher|
|2||Divine Fortune||D. Nagle||J. Sheppard|
|3||All Together||R. Geraghty||D. Jacobson|
|4||Syros||D. Mullins||J. Fisher|
|5||Charminster (IRE)||C. Sloan||C. Murphy|
|6||Demonstrative||R. Walsh||R. Valentine|
|7||Schoodic||P. Young||J. Fisher|
|8||Alajmal||B. Dalton||J. Elliot|
|9||All the Way Jose||W. McCarthy||J. Sheppard|
|10||Bob Le Beau (IRE)||J. Doyle||E. Voss|
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