New York Stakes 2019: Contenders & Odds

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NYRA Press Release | OTB Writer

Graded-stakes winner Competitionofideas leads a pair of talented Chad Brown-trained contenders in the Grade 2, $600,000 New York Stakes for fillies and mares 4-years-old and up on the inner turf at Belmont Park on Friday, June 7.

The 76th running of the New York is one of five stakes on Friday's card, marking the second day of the Belmont Stakes Racing Festival that culminates with the 151st running of the Grade 1, $1.5 million Belmont Stakes on Saturday, June 8.

2019 New York Stakes Odds & Entries

Race 9 at Belmont Park on Friday, June 07 - Post 5:15 PM

Entry Horse ML Odds Jockey Trainer
1 Holy Helena 9-2 Manuel Franco
119 Lbs
James Jerkens
2 Matty's Magnum 30-1 Junior Alvarado
119 Lbs
David Donk
3 Giant Zinger 15-1 Jose Ortiz
115 Lbs
William Mott
4 Lady Montdore 10-1 Kendrick Carmouche
119 Lbs
Thomas Albertrani
5 Vexatious 15-1 Florent Geroux
119 Lbs
Jack Sisterson
6 Competitionofideas 5-2 Javier Castellano
123 Lbs
Chad Brown
7 Semper Sententiae 8-1 John Velazquez
115 Lbs
Mark Hennig
8 Homerique 6-5 Irad Ortiz, Jr.
119 Lbs
Chad Brown

Competitionofideas looks to sustain the consistent start to her career, as she carries a 3-2-2 ledger in eight career starts into the 1 1/4-mile race. After back-to-back wins, Brown moved the Speightstown filly up to stakes company in November, where she ran third in the Winter Memories at Aqueduct Racetrack in a one-mile contest that was moved off the turf.

Shipping to the West Coast for the first time - and returning to grass -Competitonofideas proved to be a road warrior, posting an off-the-pace 2 ¾-length win in the Grade 1 American Oaks on December 29 at Santa Anita Park. To start her 4-year-old season, she ran second to stablemate and fellow New York contestant Homerique in the Grade 3 Beaugay on May 11 at Belmont, earning a personal-best 96 Beyer Speed Figure.

Hall of Famer Javier Castellano, who rode her to a maiden-breaking win at fourth asking in September at Belmont, will have the return call from post 6.

Homerique made an impression in her first U.S. start, rallying from last-of-six to best Competitionofideas by a half length to win the Beaugay, netting her a 96 Beyer as well.

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After going 2-1-1 in six career starts in France, Homerique was shipped across the Atlantic with Brown taking over the training duties. Owned by Peter Brant, Homerique has been training at Belmont since May after previously being stabled at Palm Meadows Training Center in Boynton Beach, Florida.

Irad Ortiz, Jr. will ride again from post 8.

Godolphin's Lady Montdore will be cutting back in distance after running fourth last out in the Grade 2 Sheepshead Bay on May 4 at Belmont. The 5-year-old Medaglia d'Oro mare was coming off a layoff in excess of five months but stayed close to the pace before tiring late in the 1 3/8-mile route over soft turf.

Trainer Tom Albertrani said getting Lady Montdore back in action was a positive step and is looking for a return to the form she showed when she won the Grade 2 Glens Falls in September at Saratoga and when she ran third in the Grade 1 Flower Bowl in October at Belmont. After running three of her last four races at 1 3/8-miles, she will be cutting back to the Flower Bowl's distance of 1 ¼ miles.

"I think she's come forward since the last race. It won't be a matter of fitness, it'll be if she can handle the shorter distance," Albertrani said. "She's gained some weight; that was the whole purpose of giving her time off. But she still tends to be on the lean side. We just have to make up a little bit of ground off the last start."

Lady Montdore will face familiar opponents from the Sheepshead Bay, where she was forwardly placed.

"It looks like the same group she faced last time, so I don't see much difference in the pace scenario," Albertrani said. "She usually runs her race and tends to be closer to the front-end and hopefully that's the case and we have her a little fitter."

Kendrick Carmouche will have the return call from post 4.

Stronach Stables' Holy Helena will look for firmer turf in her first start since besting Ickymasho by a head in the Grade 3 Very One on March 2 at Gulfstream Park.

The 5-year-old Ghostzapper mare entered the Sheepshead Bay last month at Belmont, but trainer Jimmy Jerkens scratched her after heavy rainfall rendered the Belmont turf soft leading up to the race on May 4.

"She hates it real soft like that, so we needed to scratch," Jerkens said. "It was a small field, but at the same time, she would have really struggled, so we decided to take her out."

Holy Helena is a three-time graded stakes winner, including a victory in the 2018 edition of the Sheepshead Bay that followed a win in the Grade 3 Very One in March 2018 at Gulfstream. She is 4-1-0 in her last six starts on turf labeled firm.

Jockey Manny Franco will pick up the mount for the first time, drawing post 1.

Team Penney Racing's Giant Zinger, third in the Sheepshead Bay in her last start behind Semper Sententiae and the Brown-trained winner Santa Monica, breezed Sunday at Belmont, going four furlongs in 50.11 seconds on the Belmont training track.

Since running sixth in her debut in September 2017, Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott has seen Giant Zinger go 2-3-3 in her next nine starts, including a third-place finish in the Grade 3 Orchid on March 29 at Gulfstream.

"She's been very good since her last race," Mott said. "She's working steady. She's done everything right."

Jose Ortiz will be in the irons from post 3.

Semper Sententiae has finished in the money in each of her last five starts, all against stakes company. Trainer Mark Hennig moved the daughter of The Factor up to graded stakes competition following a third-place finish in the Tropical Park Oaks to close her sophomore campaign in December.

In her 4-year-old bow, she ran third in the Grade 3 La Prevoyante in January and followed with another third in Grade 3 The Very One on March 2 at Gulfstream.

Off a runner-up effort in the Sheepshead Bay, Semper Sententiae returns to Belmont, this time with the services of Hall of Fame jockey John Velazquez from post 7.

Vexatious, who won the Grade 3 Dowager through disqualification and ran third in the Red Carpet in November, drew post 5 for trainer Neil Drysdale.

Matty's Magnum, the winner of the Winter Memories, will go for her first career graded stakes win for trainer David Donk, drawing post 2.

Holy Helena looks to improve on last year's G2 New York effort

Centennial Farms' Candygram came out of his four-furlong breeze at Belmont Park on Wednesday in good order, but trainer Jimmy Jerkens said he isn't sure when the 4-year-old Candy Ride colt will run next.

Candygram could potentially take a step up in class and make his stakes debut in the Grade 1, $1.2 million Runhappy Metropolitan on Belmont Stakes Day, June 8, but Jerkens said that spot might be too ambitious. On Wednesday, Candygram was clocked in 49.05 seconds working on the Belmont dirt training track.

"He was just due for a breeze; we're not really seriously pointing towards the Metropolitan unless it looks like the race will fall apart," Jerkens said. "We weren't really planning to run there. That race is always pretty tough."

While running in the prestigious Met Mile might not be in the plans, Candygram has improved as he's matured, posting his four highest career Beyer Speed Figures in his four races of the new campaign, including a 5 ½-length score last out against optional claimers at one mile on May 17 at Belmont, earning a 97 Beyer.

Candygram has won his last two races and is 3-2-1 in nine career starts, including two wins in three starts at Belmont, where he broke his maiden in June 2018. Jerkens said Candygram, who was purchased for $300,000 at the 2017 Ocala Breeders' Sale, could be pointed to a stakes in July in the later stages of the Belmont spring/summer meet.

"The improvement is nice to see but the [Met Mile] would be a big step up," Jerkens said "Hopefully, he can be that kind of horse, but it would be an aggressive move to run there."

While Candygram is unlikely to run during the Belmont Stakes Racing Festival, Stronach Stables' Holy Helena is being pointed towards the Grade 2, $600,000 New York for fillies and mares 4-years-old and up going 1 ¼ miles on the inner turf on Friday, June 7, Jerkens said.

The 5-year-old Ghostzapper mare won her last start, edging Ickymasho by a neck in the Grade 3 The Very One on March 2 over the firm turf at Gulfstream Park. Holy Helena entered the Grade 2 Sheepshead Bay earlier in May at Belmont, but Jerkens scratched her after heavy rainfall made the Belmont turf soft leading up to the race on May 4.

"She hates it real soft like that, so we needed to scratch," Jerkens said. "It was a small field, but at the same time, she would have really struggled, so we decided to take her out."

Holy Helena, stabled at Belmont, breezed six furlongs in 1:17.34 on Saturday on the dirt training track. Jerkens said she'll work on the grass once more before running in the New York, where she ran fifth in last year's edition.

"She's good; she had a nice little stamina work in company the other day and we're planning on getting a little turf work in before the race," Jerkens said.

Holy Helena, 7-3-2 in 16 career starts, has already amassed seven figures in earnings, banking $1,175,578. Since being switched to turf at the start of her 4-year-old campaign in 2018 - following a 3-year-old year in which she won the Queen's Plate and finished second in the Grade 3 Ontario Derby - Holy Helena is 4-1-1 in nine starts.

Travers Stakes at Saratoga

Early look at the 150th running of the $1,250,000 Travers Stakes which will be held on Saturday, August 24 at Saratoga Race Course.

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