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The Stonestreet Lexington Stakes for 3-year-olds going 1 1/16 miles on the main track at Keeneland Racecourse, serves as the final points race in Kentucky for the $3 million Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve (G1) with 34 points at stake on a 20-8-4-2 basis for the top four finishers.
Peter Redekop's Anothertwistafate and Silverton Hill's Sueno head a field of 10 3-year-olds entered Wednesday for Saturday's 38th running of the $200,000 Stonestreet Lexington (G3).
Run at 1 1/16 miles on the main track, the Stonestreet Lexington will be run as the ninth race on Saturday's 11-race program with a 5:34 p.m. ET post time. First post time Saturday is 1:05 p.m.
Race 9 on Keeneland's Saturday card with a Post Time of 5:30 PM
|1||Shang||15-1||Irad Ortiz, Jr.
|2||Hawaiian Noises||15-1||John Velazquez
|5||Harvey Wallbanger||8-1||Brian Hernandez, Jr.
|6||Chase the Ghost||20-1||Miguel Mena
|7||Knicks Go||12-1||Albin Jimenez
|Victor Barboza, Jr.|
Nobody said getting to the Kentucky Derby was easy, and the road traveled for Peter Redekop's Anothertwistafate already has hit one minor speed bump.
After finishing second in the Sunland Park Derby (G3) on March 24, Anothertwistafate was scheduled to return to his home base at Golden Gate Fields in Northern California.
"We decided the next day to stay because of the quarantine at Golden Gate (for equine herpesvirus-1), and it turned out to be a blessing in disguise," trainer Blaine Wright said. "The weather was good there (at Sunland), and he worked well (:46.80 for a half-mile) the day before we left last week."
With the runner-up finish at Sunland, Anothertwistafate added 20 Kentucky Derby qualifying points to bring his total to 30, a figure that ranks 23rd on the leaderboard. The Derby is limited to the top 20 point earners and invitees that pass the entry box.
Two qualifying races remain and both are Saturday: the Arkansas Derby (G1) at Oaklawn Park and the Stonestreet Lexington (G3) at Keeneland. Anothertwistafate was entered Wednesday in the Stonestreet Lexington with Javier Castellano to ride the Scat Daddy colt for the first time. The race has 34 Derby points available on a 20-8-4-2 distribution to the top four finishers. The current cut line is 37.5 points.
"After Saturday, we'll find out," the 44-year-old Wright said of his plans for the final leg of the Derby journey. "I don't know if I would work him in between (the Stonestreet Lexington and the Kentucky Derby). It depends on how he comes out of this. His races have been spaced out and he is carrying good flesh."
A native of Washington, Wright never has started a horse at Keeneland.
"I have been to the races here once on a weekday," said Wright, who also has stakes winner Anyportinastorm here. "I may run (Anyportinastorm) here or wait for an allowance race at Churchill."
Although Wright is new to the races here, part of his team is not.
Anothertwistafate's groom, Pascual Garcia, formerly worked for trainer Greg Gilchrist and was the groom for 2005 champion sprinter Lost in the Fog.
Garcia was at Keeneland with Gilchrist in 2008 when Indyanne won the Thoroughbred Club of America (G3) in which she set a stakes record that still stands.
Sueno is trained by Keith Desormeaux, who won this race last year with My Boy Jack. Sueno, who has accumulated his 28 points (25th) with runner-up finishes in the Sham (G3) and Southwest (G3) and a third-place finish in the Twinspires.com Louisiana Derby (G2), will be ridden by Corey Lanerie and break from post position three.
No other entrant has accumulated enough points to earn a Derby spot even with a victory Saturday.
Also in the field and returning to the scene of his biggest victory is KRA Stud Farm's Knicks Go. Trained by Ben Colebrook, Knicks Go won last fall's Claiborne Breeders' Futurity (G1) before going on to a runner-up finish in the Sentient Jet Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1).
Seventh in the Gotham (G3) in his most recent start, Knicks Go will break from post position seven and be ridden by Albin Jimenez.
Among the 65 nominations are three horses currently on the Road to the Kentucky Derby leaderboard, but each could be looking to pick up more points to ensure a spot in the starting gate for the May 4 classic.
The trio includes Peter Redekop's Anothertwistafate (30 points), winner of the El Camino Real Derby at Golden Gate and most recently runner-up in the Sunland Park Derby (G3); Mrs. J.V. Shields, E.J.M. McFadden Jr. and LNJ Foxwoods' Country House (30), runner-up in the Risen Star (G2) and fourth in the Louisiana Derby (G2); and Silverton Hill's multiple graded stakes-placed Sueno (28), third in the Louisiana Derby.
On Wednesday, trainer Ben Colebrook Colebrook worked KRA Stud Farm's Knicks Go, winner of last fall's Claiborne Breeders' Futurity (G1) and runner-up in the Sentient Jet Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1).
"He may run in the (Stonestreet) Lexington (G3)," Colebrook said of Knicks Go, whose work (1:01.60 for 5 furlongs) was the first since he finished seventh in the Gotham (G3). "He didn't run at all (in the Gotham) and now we got him back home and will try to change things up with him."
Baffert said the multiple Grade 3-winning son of Mucho Macho Man is under consideration for Keeneland's Grade 3, $200,000 Lexington Stakes on April 13, the final day for points qualifiers.
While Mucho Gusto's third in the Sunland Derby boosted him to 16th on the current Derby leaderboard, his 24 points are not on pace to remain in the Top 20 with most major preps still left to run. The Lexington awards points on a 20-8-4-2 scale to its first four finishers, and the winner's share could certainly send him on to Churchill Downs.
"I got him back here from Sunland," Bob Baffert said of a third-place finish in the Sunland Derby. "I was a little bit disappointed because he had to make the gate, and he tried to run the same race as he did in the Los Alamitos Futurity where he did all the dirty work and he paid for it at the end.
"...One thing about it: We're realistic kind of people about the mile and a quarter. I don't cross that bridge until I get there."
Four other stakes are scheduled for the second weekend of the meet: the inaugural running of the $100,000 Limestone Turf Sprint and the $300,000 Maker's 46 Mile (G1) on April 12, and, on April 13, the 89th running of the $200,000 Ben Ali (G3) and 23rd running of the $100,000 Giant's Causeway (L).
Now considered one of the last major prep races for the Kentucky Derby, the Lexington Stakes is run at 1 1/16 miles (8.5 furlongs) on Keeneland's dirt track. Charismatic, in 1991, was the last horse to complete the Lexington Stakes-Kentucky Derby double. Hall of Fame jockey Jerry Bailey won the Lexington a record six times. Some other horses to win the Lexington were Risen Star, Hansel, Tough Gold and Proud Citizen.
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