Saratoga: Fourstardave

Daily Racing Form Saturday Stakes Preview - - FRONT PAGE - – Mar­cus Hersh – David Gren­ing

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Rain fell here Wed­nes­day, and there was more ex­pected Fri­day and maybe Satur­day.

That was all trainer Chad Brown needed to keep Takeover Tar­get in New York for Satur­day’s $500,000 Fourstardave Hand­i­cap rather than ship­ping him to Chicago for Satur­day’s Grade 1 Ar­ling­ton Mil­lion.

Takeover Tar­get was one of 10 horses en­tered in the Fourstardave, a one-mile turf race that was el­e­vated to Grade 1 sta­tus for the first time this year.

Also en­tered were Grand Arch, the 2015 Fourstardave win­ner and 2014 run­ner-up; King Kreesa, the 2013 Fourstardave run­ner-up; Ring Week­end, Re­port­ing Star, Force the Pass, Tourist, Black­type, and A Lot. Week­end Hide­away was en­tered to run only if the race is run on the main track.

Brown had Takeover Tar­get among the horses he was con­sid­er­ing for the Ar­ling­ton Mil­lion, but he didn’t ship that horse to Chicago on Tues­day based pri­mar­ily on the wet fore­cast in up­state New York.

“There’s a chance of rain here, we don’t have to ship, there will be more pace,” Brown said of his de­ci­sion to run Takeover Tar­get at Saratoga.

Takeover Tar­get has proven to be a solid horse over good to soft ground. Two starts back, he won the Grade 2 Dixie on “good” turf at Pim­lico over Grand Arch. In 2015, he won the Grade 2 Hill Prince over yield­ing ground.

Takeover Tar­get wore blink­ers for the first time in the Dixie, and Brown felt they made a dif­fer­ence. He fin­ished fourth in the Grade 3 Poker in his most re­cent start, a one­turn-mile race dom­i­nated by Ob­vi­ously.

“The horse is a much bet­ter horse with the blink­ers on,” Brown said. “It didn’t work out for him last time. It was my fault. I ran him in too sharp a mile race on firm ground in a one-turn race, and it just wasn’t for him.”

Takeover Tar­get drew post 4, one slot out­side of sta­ble­mate A Lot, who fin­ished sec­ond to Takeover Tar­get in the Grade 2 Hall of Fame Stakes here last sum­mer.

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