Atreides Rebounds with Sharp Score in Aventura Handicap

December 10, 2019

Hal’s Hope (G3) Next for Marty Wolfson-Trained Colt

HALLANDALE BEACH, FL - Atreides maintained his perfect record at Gulfstream Park in Sunday’s $50,000 Aventura Handicap, posting a 4 ½-length victory while rebounding from his only career loss..

Coming off a mysterious sixth-place finish as the even-money favorite in the Indiana Derby (G2) at Indiana Grand Race Course on Oct. 4, the 3-year-old son of Medaglia d’Oro returned to the winning ways that had produced three straight dominating victories at Gulfstream Park while launching his career last summer.

The Stonestreet Stables’ homebred had to overcome adversity in order to run his record at Gulfstream to 4-0. Crowded at the start, Atreides quickly settled into stride under jockey Edgard Zayas while being positioned on the outside, stalking the pace set by Dudeman and pressed by Tony B. The Kentucky-bred colt steadily advanced leaving the backstretch and around the far turn to loom boldly under his motionless jockey leaving the turn into the homestretch. When asked for his run, Atreides spurted past Dudeman to score convincingly in the one-mile handicap.

The 2-5 favorite in a field of eight three-year-olds ran the mile in 1:37.20 as the 121-pound co-highweight. Dudeman held second under 117 pounds, including jockey Jose Lezcano – a neck in front of late-running Urban Cool. Best Plan Yet, who also carried 121 pounds, closed from last to finish fourth.

“He had a tough break. They squeezed him pretty bad at the start. After that, he just doesn’t like to get dirt in the face, so I just took him out of there and got him in the clear. Once he’s in the clear he just keeps rolling. I knew I had (Dudeman). Once I asked him he responded, so I just was waiting for the stretch to let him go,” said Zayas, who rode three winners on Sunday’s card after winning two Claiming Crown stakes on Saturday. “I think he’s as good as he was. He just needed this race. He hadn’t run since Indiana and those trips are pretty tough for the horses. He came out of it good and for the next race, he’s going to keep getting better and better.”

Trainer Marty Wolfson reported that the $150,000 Hal’s Hope (G3) at Gulfstream is the next target.

Wolfson had said before the Aventura that he drew a line through Atreides past performance line in the Indiana Derby, in which he was never a factor.

“I just thought he would have showed something there. For him to sit back in sixth when they run a half in 48, we were very disappointed in the race,” Wolfson said.

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