Chad Brown, a four-time Eclipse Award-winning trainer, will saddle a trio of contenders making their seasonal debuts in the Grade 2, $200,000 Fort Marcy Stakes, a nine-furlong inner turf test for older horses at Belmont Park on Saturday, May 1, sending out Rockemperor, Tribhuvan and Devamani.
The Fort Marcy is slated as Race 5 on Saturday's 11-race card, which also includes the Grade 3, $200,000 Westchester in Race 3 and the Grade 2, $200,000 Sheepshead Bay in Race 10.
multiple Grade 1-placed Rockemperor (Madaket Stables, Michael Dubb, Wonder Stables, Michael E. Kisber and Bethlehem Stables) will exit post 2 under Manny Franco in search of his first graded score.
The 5-year-old Holy Roman Emperor horse has hit the board in a trio of Grade 1 events, including a third in the 2019 Belmont Derby, a second in the Manhattan in July at Belmont and a third two starts back in the Turf Classic in September at Churchill Downs.
Rockemperor wintered at Payson Park in Florida before shipping to New York, where he breezed a half-mile in 50.03 seconds on the Belmont dirt training track on April 24.
"He breezed here once and looked great," said Brown's New York-based assistant Dan Stupp. "Just by watching him gallop around, it appears that he's awfully full of himself. He's been galloping very forwardly and it looks like he's doing very well."
Sanford J. Goldfarb and Samuel Abraham's Devamani, a 7-year-old French-bred son of Dubawi, captured the Grade 2 Knickerbocker in October over yielding Belmont turf to close out his 2020 campaign, earning a 100 Beyer Speed Figure.
With a record of 25-5-8-5 and purse earnings of $401,239, the experienced Devamani posted a career-best 102 Beyer when second to Instilled Regard in last year's Fort Marcy.
Tribhuvan, a 5-year-old French-bred son of Toronado owned by Dubb, Madaket Stables and Wonder Stables, captured the Prix du Bras d'Or at Compiegne and the Prix de la Chambre de Monsieur at Chantilly in 2019 for his former conditioner Henri-Alex Pantall.
The bay made a trio of starts last year for Brown, including a nose score in a 1 1/16-mile optional-claiming event on the Belmont turf in July.
Devamani will exit post 1 under Jose Lezcano, while Tribhuvan, a first-time gelding, will emerge from post 3 with Eric Cancel up.
Augustin Stable homebred Wissahickon, a 6-year-old Tapit gelding, was a multiple stakes winner in England on turf and synthetic for his former conditioner John Gosden.
In February 2019, Wissahickon stepped up to win the Group 3 Winter Derby at Lingfield on synthetic footing. Transferred to the care of Jonathan Thomas last year, Wissahickon closed from 22 lengths off the pace to finish fifth, defeated 3 3/4-lengths, in a 1 1/16-mile optional claiming event in July on the Saratoga turf.
Joe Bravo will pilot Wissahickon from the outermost post 5.
New York-bred City Man, a multiple stakes winner owned by Reeves Thoroughbred Racing and Peter and Patty Searles, will leave post 4 in search of graded-stakes glory under Trevor McCarthy.
The 4-year-old Mucho Macho Man colt, bred by Moonstar Farm, captured the Gio Ponti by a nose traveling 1 1/16-miles on good Aqueduct turf in November for trainer Christophe Clement.
Last out, City Man broke through the gate in the Alex M. Robb in December at the Big A and was eased.
First post on Saturday is 12:20 p.m. Eastern.
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