Ju­ve­nile stakes a key piece of Sun­shine Mil­lions Pre­view

Daily Racing Form National Digital Edition - - News - By Randy Gould­ing

Four $75,000 stakes races for 2-year-olds bred in Florida are a big part of Satur­day’s Sun­shine Mil­lions Pre­view Day card at Gulf­stream Park West. The stakes-filled pro­gram is the high­light of the meet and serves as a pre­lude to Sun­shine Mil­lions Day Jan. 20 at Gulf­stream Park.

First up is the Ju­ve­nile Fil­lies Sprint, where Star­ship Bonita will try to win her third stakes in a row. The daugh­ter of Gone Astray is the only horse in the four stakes races for ju­ve­niles that has won a stakes race.

In her Florida Sire Stakes vic­to­ries at Gulf­stream Park in the My Dear Girl on Sept. 30 and the Su­san’s Girl on Sept 2, she edged Dessert Honeys by a head and a neck.

Trainer Steven Dwoskin likes that she is cut­ting back to a sprint fol­low­ing her gutsy win go­ing 1 1/16 miles in the Su­san’s Girl.

“I think she is ba­si­cally a sprinter,” Dwoskin said. “We had to train her dif­fer­ently to get her to go around two turns, and we have put some speed back into her lead­ing up to this race. I don’t think she’s a cham­pion, but she is a nice horse. We bought her for $72,000 in March, and they have a great pro­gram in Florida that al­lows you to make a lot of money with a good horse.”

To be ex­act, Star­ship Bonita has earned $374,400 for owner Lau­rence Leavy. Leavy, bet­ter known to Ma­jor League Base­ball fans as Mar­lins Man, races un­der the sta­ble name Star­ship Sta­bles.

Car­los Mon­talvo, aboard for both of Star­ship Bonita’s stakes wins, has the re­turn call from post 2.

The main threat ap­pears to be Sil­ver Bay, who was an im­pres­sive de­but win­ner for trainer Wil­liam Hickey.

With ap­pren­tice Aby Me­d­ina rid­ing, the daugh­ter of Cur­rency Swap sat just off the lead be­fore draw­ing away to win the five-fur­long dash for Florida-bred fil­lies by 5 1/2 lengths Oct. 23 at Gulf­stream Park West.

She will break from the rail with Tyler Gaf­falione pick­ing up the mount.

In the Ju­ve­nile Sprint, trainer Ralph Nicks is hop­ing Wild­cat’s Le­gacy will han­dle the Gulf­stream Park West sur­face as well as he did Gulf­stream’s, where he romped in his de­but Sept. 27.

If he does, the son of Wild­cat Heir could be tough to han­dle in Satur­day’s 6 1/2-fur­long dash.

De­spite break­ing last in his de­but, he won the six-fur­long

maiden spe­cial weight race for Florida-breds by 7 1/4 lengths. The mar­gin would have been larger if Edgard Zayas didn’t wrap up on him in the fi­nal six­teenth.

“I thought he would run a good race, but I didn’t ex­pect to see what I saw,” Nicks said. “He’s trained well since, and be­tween hur­ri­canes he’s shipped around a bit, so I am not wor­ried about tak­ing him over. The track is a lit­tle dif­fer­ent, though, so we’ll have to wait and see how he han­dles it. “

He will break from post 3 with Zayas rid­ing again.

Reed Kan and Al­ways a Dreamer look like the main threats.

The Ju­ve­nile Turf ap­pears to be a wide-open event.

Nauti Buoy rates a close look in the one-mile race that drew eight horses.

He won his de­but go­ing five fur­longs on turf July 2 at Laurel Park, but was over­matched in his next two starts at Saratoga in the Grade 3 San­ford and Grade 3 With An­tic­i­pa­tion. In his lat­est start for trainer Erin McClel­lan, he fin­ished fifth in the $100,000 Laurel Fu­tu­rity won by Ther­a­pist. Ther­a­pist is un­de­feated in three starts and re­peated in the $100,000 Awad on Oct. 28 at Bel­mont.

The son of Mizzen Mast should ap­pre­ci­ate the eas­ier com­pany he is fac­ing and could be dan­ger­ous with the blink­ers com­ing off in his first start for trainer Lilli Kurtinez.

He will break from the rail with Zayas rid­ing.

Salambo, trained by Gar­cia Rodolfo, has the best speed and con­sid­er­ing his dam and only sib­ling are turf win­ners, he should be okay run­ning on turf the first time.

The X set the pace be­fore tir­ing go­ing a mile on turf in a first-level al­lowance race Oct. 20 at Keeneland and could be dan­ger­ous if Gaf­falione can get him to set­tle early.

In his only start on firm turf for trainer Ben Cole­brook, The X ral­lied to win his de­but in a maiden spe­cial weight race Aug. 4 at El­lis Park.

Partly be­cause she is trained by Michael Maker and will be rid­den by Gaf­falione, Home­made Salsa will likely be a hot favorite in the one-mile Ju­ve­nile Fil­lies Turf.

She also is com­ing off a run­ner-up fin­ish go­ing a mile against open com­pany in the $75,000 Our Dear Peggy on Sept. 30 at Gulf­stream, and she has the pedi­gree to han­dle her first turf as­sign­ment.

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