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MONMOUTH PARK - Trainer Chad Brown, who has won two straight Eclipse Awards as the nation's top trainer, will send out a four-pronged attack in the Grade 1 United Nations Stakes at Monmouth Park on Saturday, June 30, looking to add to a turf portfolio that is already one of the most impressive in the sport's history.
Brown has entered Money Multiplier, Silverwave, Kurilov and Funtastic in the mile and 3/8ths grass race for 3-year-olds and up that highlights a 13-race card featuring four stakes races. The United Nations drew of a field of nine.
The Grade 3 Philip H. Iselin Stakes, the Grade 3 Eatontown Stakes and the Lady's Secret Stakes will serve as the supporting stakes races to the $300,000 United Nations.
First race post is 12:50 p.m. for Saturday's card, which will also feature a carryover of $61,611 in the Jersey Shore Pick 6. In addition, Monmouth Park will again offer a $150,000 guarantee on the late Pick 5 if there is a single winner. The bet covers the final five races on the card.
Race 11 on Monmouth Park's Saturday card with a Post Time of 6:01 PM
|1||Funtastic||15-1||Antonio Gallardo||Chad Brown|
|2||One Go All Go||8-1||Chris Landeros||Charles Dickey|
|3||Profiteer||8-1||Trevor McCarthy||Claude McGaughey III|
|4||Kurilov (CHI)||9-2||Irad Ortiz, Jr.||Chad Brown|
|5||Money Multiplier||5-2||Joe Bravo||Chad Brown|
|6||Oscar Nominated||4-1||Eric Cancel||Michael Maker|
|7||Silverwave (FR)||6-1||Rajiv Maragh||Chad Brown|
|8||Bigger Picture||6-1||Kendrick Carmouche||Michael Maker|
|9||Vettori Kin (BRZ)||10-1||Paco Lopez||Kenneth McPeek|
Money Multiplier, who won the Grade 2 Monmouth Stakes for the second straight year on May 26, has shown a particular affinity for the Monmouth turf course, finishing second in the United Nations in 2016. Both of his Monmouth Stakes victories were on the grass as well.
"He seems to really like Monmouth's turf course. That's his biggest asset in this race," said Brown, who plans to be in attendance to saddle his quartet of runners. "He has proven he's a top quality horse. He was narrowly beaten in the United Nations two years ago, so I think he has a good chance in the race."
While the French-bred Silverwave "has been disappointing" since coming to Brown's powerhouse stable three starts ago, the 6-year-old does own a Group 1 victory in France, having won the Grand Prix de Saint Cloud in 2016.
"I feel he is training much better now than he has at any time since he has been in our care," said Brown. "It's worth taking a shot based on his workouts, particularly the last one. So I'm going to take a shot in a big race with him and hope he regains that past form."
The Chilean-bred Kurilov comes off a dead-heat win in an allowance optional claimer at Belmont Park on May 25, his fifth start since coming to Brown. The son of Lookin At Lucky-Kassanova was second in the Grade 1 Gulfstream Park Turf Stakes on Feb. 10 and captured the Grade 1 Gran Primo Hippodromo Chile in his last start in Chile in 2017.
Funtastic, a 4-year-old Kentucky-bred, comes in off a victory in an allowance optional claimer at Belmont Park on May 26. He shows a 3-2-1 line from eight career starts but has never faced the caliber of competition he will in the United Nations.
"This is a big class test for him," said Brown. "No question this is a big challenge for him. We'll see how he handles it."
Brown, whose turf earnings of $16.5 million last year were nearly twice that of his nearest competitor, has amassed more than $88 million on the turf (of his $130 million-plus earnings overall) during a career that started in 2007. Brown is off to an impressive start at the Monmouth Park meeting, showing a 9-5-5 line from his 24 starters.
Also in the field and breaking from the two-hole is the Virginia-bred One Go All Go. Though eleventh last out in the Grade 1 Manhattan, the Charles Dickey trainee has been in the money in five of seven starts this year, all in graded company, including a win in the Grade 2 Dixiana Elkhorn at Keeneland. Chris Landeros will ride.
First race post is 12:50 p.m. for Saturday's 13-race card, which will also feature a carryover of $61,611in the Jersey Shore Pick 6.
Almost a full year later, trainer Michael Maker still has his doubts when he watches the replay of the 2017 United Nations Stakes that Bigger Picture will find a way to get through on the rail to win the Grade 1 race.
"I still wonder how he got there," said Maker. "Let's just say there were a few anxious moments."
The end result was obviously worth the angst, and Maker is back to try again, sending the same two-horse entry from last year's United Nations into Saturday's 65th running of the race.
Bigger Picture, the 10-1 upset winner of the United Nations a year ago, and stable mate Oscar Nominated, who finished seventh in that race, are part of a nine-horse field entered for the mile and three-eighths grass race that carries a $300,000 purse.
Bigger Picture comes in off a seventh-place finish in the Grade 1 Man O' War Stakes at Belmont Park on May 12, though he did start the year by winning the Grade 3 John B. Connally Turf Stakes at Sam Houston.
The 7-year-old gelding has 11 wins (10 on the grass) from 31 career starts.
"He's doing well," said Maker. "His last race wasn't up to par but he's getting older so I don't know if he is losing some consistency. At the same time, that was a tough field - which you expect in a Grade 1 race."
That will be the case in the United Nations as well, with trainer Chad Brown sending out four starters in Money Multiplier, Silverwave, Kurilov and Funtastic. It's a formidable quartet from the sport's most accomplished grass trainer, but Maker feels Bigger Picture deserves the chance to try to repeat in the race.
"He ran so well at Monmouth last year in this race we felt it was only fair to give him a shot at it again," sad Maker. "Thankfully, he has been very healthy. He's a pretty straightforward horse. He generally tries and he obviously has talent."
Kendrick Carmouche has the mount this year after Joe Bravo produced the upset victory a year ago. Bravo will instead ride Money Multiplier, who has won the Grade 2 Monmouth Stakes the past two years.
Oscar Nominated was a solid second in his last start in the Grade 2 Elkhorn Stakes at Keeneland on April 21, losing by three-quarters of a length to One Go All Go, who is also in the United Nations field.
A 5-year-old son of Kitten's Joy-Devine Actress, Oscar Nominated is a Grade 3 winner with six wins and eight seconds from 26 career starts. He has banked $1,475,631.
"He's a very consistent horse," said Maker, who will be in Canada on Saturday to saddle three horses in the $1 million Queen's Plate at Woodbine. "Last year in the UN he lost some ground and was a little closer to the pace than we would have liked. But we think he fits here.
"He has been such a good horse for us we're trying to get him a Grade 1 victory. He is definitely capable of winning one."
Post time for Saturday's program is 12:50 p.m. In addition to the United Nations, the card features the Grade 3 Philip H. Iselin Stakes, the Grade 3 Eatontown Stakes and the Lady's Secret Stakes.
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