Full fields of 12 sophomores have been entered for both the Grade 3, $550,000 Spiral and its sister race, the Grade 3, $125,000 Bourbonette Oaks, on Saturday at Turfway Park.
Each race will be worth points on a 50-20-10-5 basis, with the Spiral scheduled on the Road to the Kentucky Derby series and the Bourbonette Oaks part of the Road to the Kentucky Oaks.
The Spiral is the main event and has drawn a competitive group of three-year-olds headlined by 3-1 morning-line favorite Tamarando. Trainer Jerry Hollendorfer shipped the dark bay son of Bertrando from the West Coast in search of a second straight graded victory. The colt captured the Grade 3 El Camino Real Derby over Golden Gate Fields’ synthetic Tapeta on February 15 but is no stranger to the all-weather Polytrack, having scored in the Grade 1 Del Mar Derby over that surface last season.
While Tamarando is making his Turfway debut, the top three from the March 1 local prep, the John Battaglia Memorial, will all be lining back up on Saturday.
Solitary Ranger easily got the best of stablemate Poker Player in the 8 1/2-furlong Battaglia by 4 3/4 front-running lengths. It was another five lengths back to Harry’s Holiday, who sprinted 6 1/2 furlongs for an eight-length score in the 96Rock Stakes one month prior.
Poker Player will be trying Polytrack for the third time on Saturday. The Catalano-trained son of Harlan’s Holiday opened his career on turf and was scheduled to make his stakes bow in the grassy Grade 3 Bourbon at Keeneland last October. That race was moved to the main track, but Poker Player still pulled off the victory in the 1 1/16-mile contest. The gray colt shipped to the West Coast for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf, where he finished eighth in his juvenile finale, and could improve in this spot in his second start of the year. Channing Hill retains the mount on Poker Player, who is 5-1 on the morning-line.
Harry’s Holiday hasn’t been given much chance in the Spiral, based on his 20-1 morning-line odds. However, the Mike Maker pupil did earn a career-best 95 BRIS Speed rating in the 96Rock and gets a jockey change on Saturday to Rosie Napravnik. That may not be enough to get him in the winner’s circle, but the Harlan’s Holiday colt could have a shot at hitting the board again.
The Bourbonette Oaks will take place one race before the Spiral and will see stakes veterans facing off against stakes debuters. The 3-1 morning-line favorite in the one-mile event belongs to the latter category as Sloane Square tries black-type competition for the first time in this spot.
Aurelia’s Belle and Swiss Lake Yodeler could be the ones vying for favoritism following nice efforts against graded competition in their last races. The former filly, who is trained by Catalano, has placed in the Grade 2 Davona Dale, Grade 2 Forward Gal and Grade 3 Old Hat in her past three, and will tote the same 118-pound impost as Sloane Square.
Others of note in Saturday’s Bourbonette Oaks include Zensational Bunny, who ran fourth in the Old Hat in her most recent effort to post her first loss from three starts; Grade 3 Rachel Alexandra third-placer Shanon Nicole; and Katie’s Eyes, a 7 1/2-length scorer over the track on February 14.
2014 G3 $550,000 Spiral Stakes Information (Click here for FREE Spiral Stakes PP’s courtesy of Brisnet.com)
Date: Saturday, March 22
Where: Turfway Park, Kentucky
Post Time: 6:28pm ET/3:28pm PT
Distance: 1 1/8 Mile Synthetic
Conditions: FOR THREE-YEAR-OLDS
Spiral Stakes wagering may include: Exacta / Trifecta / 10 cent Superfecta / Daily Double/ Super Hi 5
Bet Turfway Park horse racing online with TwinSpires.com and watch FREE Turfway Park horse race replays with TwinSpiresTV!
Field and odds for the 2014 G3 $550,000 Spiral Stakes
|1||Big Bazinga||3 G||L||123||Contreras Luis||Vassilieva Katerina|
|2||Asserting Bear||3 C||L||123||Rocco, Jr. Joseph||Baker Reade|
|3||Poker Player||3 C||L||123||Hill Channing||Catalano Wayne M.|
|4||Tamarando||3 C||L||123||Baze Russell A.||Hollendorfer Jerry|
|5||Coastline||3 C||L||123||Elliott Stewart||Casse Mark E.|
|6||Smart Cover||3 C||L||123||Lanerie Corey J.||Romans Dale L.|
|7||All Tied Up||3 C||L||123||Saez Luis||Pletcher Todd A.|
|8||Solitary Ranger||3 C||L||123||Geroux Florent||Catalano Wayne M.|
|9||Almost Famous||3 C||L||123||Borel Calvin H.||Byrne Patrick B.|
|10||Harry’s Holiday||3 C||L||123||Napravnik Rosie||Maker Michael J.|
|11||We Miss Artie||3 C||L||123||Velazquez John R.||Pletcher Todd A.|
|12||Arctic Slope||3 C||L||123||Jimenez Albin||McPeek Kenneth G.|