Frosted to face eight in Woodward Stakes
SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Frosted will have eight challengers when he seeks his third straight Grade 1 victory in Saturday’s $600,000 Woodward Stakes at Saratoga, and his biggest threat may come from his own barn.
Mubtaahij, who joined trainer Kiaran Mclaughlin’s barn following his secondplace finish in the $10 million Dubai World Cup in March, was among the horses entered against Frosted in the 1 1/8-mile Woodward.
The Woodward is one of four stakes on a 12-race card that includes the Grade 1 Spinaway, Grade 3 Saranac, and Grade 3 Glens Falls.
Frosted finished fifth in the Dubai World Cup, 1 3/4 lengths behind Mubtaahij, then trained by Mike De Kock.
While Frosted has come back to the U.S. to post eye-catching victories in the Grade 1 Metropolitan Handicap and Grade 1 Whitney, Mubtaahij finished third under Irad Ortiz Jr. in the Grade 2 Suburban on July 9.
“He ran well last time,” Mclaughlin said. “Irad thought he could improve second time on him this year. He rode him last year, too, but he thought he learned a little something about him last time.”
Ortiz said he felt that in the Suburban, he might have waited too long to ask Mubtaahij to run.
“He was so good, and then I waited, and when I asked him, he was one-paced, so I want to be closer to let him do his thing earlier,” Ortiz said.
Mubtaahij drew the outside in a nine-horse field for the Woodward. Frosted, who will be ridden by Joel Rosario, will break from post 3.
Inside of Frosted will be Shaman Ghost and Breaking Lucky. Immediately outside of Frosted will be Bradester – the primary speed in the field – Catholic Cowboy, Samraat, Tale of Verve, Tapin Mojo, and then Mubtaahij.
Trainer Todd Pletcher will be represented in the Spinaway by Cherry Lodge and Sweet Loretta, who are part of a seven-horse field entered for the seven-furlong race for 2-yearold fillies.
Though John Velazquez rode Sweet Loretta to a 4 1/4-length victory in the Grade 3 Schuylerville here on opening day, he will ride Cherry Lodge from post 5 in the $350,000 Spinaway. Velazquez rode Cherry Lodge to a one-length victory in an Aug. 7 maiden race. Javier Castellano will ride Sweet Loretta from the rail in the Spinaway.
“It’s one of those decisions where it’s not an easy decision for a jockey,” said Pletcher, who noted that Velazquez and Vinnie and Teresa Viola’s St. Elias Stable, which owns Sweet Loretta, “have had success together with Liam’s Map, so that’s the way it unfolded.”
Cherry Lodge will be trying to stretch out from 5 1/2 furlongs to seven furlongs.
Special Risk, Runway Doll, and Fun were drawn outside of Sweet Loretta, while Pretty City Dancer and You Know Too are drawn outside of Cherry Lodge.
Trainer Chad Brown has won 23 turf races at the meet, including nine stakes, six of which were graded. On Saturday, he’ll have multiple runners in both graded turf stakes on the card.
In the $300,000 Saranac, for 3-year-olds, Brown will send out the trio of Camelot Kitten, Call Provision, and Ray’s The Bar in the seven-horse field.
Camelot Kitten won the Grade 2 Hall of Fame by a nose here Aug. 5. Call Provision won a first-level allowance race for New York-breds here Aug. 11, and Ray’s The Bar won an opencompany first-level allowance here July 30.
That trio will take on Inspector Lynley, Strike Midnight, Isotherm, and Copingaway.
In the $200,000 Glens Falls, for fillies and mares, Brown will send out Guapaza, the winner of the Grade 3 Waya, and Ball Dancing, fourth in the Waya.
Heading the competition in a 10-horse field is Suffused, beaten a head by Guapaza in the Waya.
Del Mar: Grade 1 Debutante
DEL MAR, Calif. – Miss Southern Miss, who starts in Saturday’s $300,000 Del Mar Debutante for 2-year-old fillies, has been a puzzle for trainer Keith Desormeaux.
She beat maidens in her debut at Santa Anita in June and was second in the Landaluce Stakes there in July and in the Grade 2 Sorrento Stakes at 6 1/2 furlongs on Aug. 6.
Desormeaux has expected better performances and is hoping the seven-furlong distance of the Grade 1 Del Mar Debutante will lead to a breakthrough stakes win for Miss Southern Miss.
“The distance will help,” Desormeaux said. “I know she’s better than she’s shown. She’s not finishing as well as she can.”
A good race in the Debutante will put her on course for the Grade 1 Chandelier Stakes at 1 1/16 miles on dirt at Santa Anita on Oct. 1. Otherwise, Miss Southern Miss could try turf. By More Than Ready, she races for Peter Cantrell.
The Debutante has a field of six probable starters, including Champagne Room, who won the Sorrento. Other candidates are the maiden-race winners American Cleopatra, Morganite, and Noted and Quoted and the maiden Union Strike, who was second to American Cleopatra on July 31.
Trainer Bob Baffert said on Wednesday that American Gal, a maiden-race winner Aug. 14, will miss the Debutante and aim for the Santa Anita autumn meeting.