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Kentucky Derby and Horse Racing at The Downey Profile®

Wet-Track Whirlaway Attracts Local and Nearby Talent

2/4/2011

By Dick Downey
The Downey Profile

(Feb. 5 Update: Sky Music has been scratched from the Whirlaway.)

With several important races for older horses on tap this weekend, we'll stick with the 3-year-olds and try to figure out the Whirlaway Stakes at Aqueduct. Most of the contenders have experience over the track, and the rest ship in from nearby.

To muddle the picture, the track is going to come up sloppy, and this field has only two off-track starts among them.

While none of the seven entered in the Whirlaway scream "Kentucky Derby contender," there are some nice horses. One of them, Rescind the Trade, is on our Worth Watching list, and he's a deserving favorite at 2-1. He's won at the track with a better time than the others and has shown late interest in each of his starts. Rick Violette thought enough of Rescind the Trade to have him taken to Florida before the end of the year. The colt's back in New York because, according to Violette, he didn't like hot weather--and it sure isn't hot in New York.

Graham Motion has been on the board at Aqueduct in seven of nine starts at this meet, and he trains Toby's Dream, a son of a horse that loved Aqueduct--Bellamy Road. After winning a Laurel maiden special weight for fun, Toby's Dream came back to win again at the same track, prompting Motion to ship this homebred in for the Whirlaway. At 6-1, why not give him a shot? He finished third on a sloppy track after prompting the pace, but it was his debut and he's improved since then.

J J's Lucky Train, like Rescind the Trade, has beaten Grade III Lecomte runner-up Pants on Fire. With blinkers off after five starts, maybe he won't be full bore early and will have plenty late. We think he'll be tracking Norman Asbjornson and perhaps Arthur's Tale.

Arthur's Tale's best race came when he was on the lead. You have to wonder if his $750,000 price tag--and Darley ownership--will show itself on the track. So far, not so much.

Sky Music is trained by Todd Pletcher for Dogwood Stable, but he's 10-1 most probably because he usually gets so far behind that he can't catch up--and because he's been a beaten favorite in each of his last two starts.

Preachintothedevil is on our Just In Case list because he won the Champagneforashley, but he seems a little slow for this group. However, he does have a win on an off-track, albeit one rated a mere "good". If the forecast holds up, we will have a sloppy surface for the Whirlaway.

DICK'S PICKS:

1. RESCIND THE TRADE
2. TOBY'S DREAM
3. J J'S LUCKY TRAIN

 

Saturday, Race 8
Whirlaway Stakes
Aqueduct
Purse: $100,000
Distance: 1 1/16 Mile
Surface: Dirt
Post Time: 3:49 ET

Post
Horse
  ML Jockey
Wt
S
M
Trainer
1
Toby's Corner (FL)
  6-1 E. Castro
118
C
L*
G. Motion
2
Arthur's Tale (KY)
  6-1 C. C. Lopez
116
C
L
T. Albertrani
3
Rescind the Trade (FL)
  2-1 A. Garcia
118
C
L
R. Violette, Jr.
4
Norman Asbjornson (PA)
  20-1 J. Acosta
122
C
L
C. Grove
5
Preachintothedevil (NY)
  4-1 J. Alvarado
118
C
L
G. Contessa
6
J J's Lucky Train (KY)
  5-2 J. Ferrer
120
C
L
W. Anderson
SCR
Sky Music (NY)
  SCR D. Cohen
118
C
L
T. Pletcher

J J's Lucky Train - Blinkers off

Owners: 1 - Cotter, Diane, D.; 2 - Darley Stable; 3 - Klaravich Stables, Lawrence, William, H.;
4 - McClay, Thomas, G., Nye, Harry; 5 - Crossed Sabres Farm; 6 - Fresh Start Stable; 7 - Dogwood Stable

Breeders: 1 - Diane D. Cotter; 2 - Stone Farm; 3 - Stud El Aguila; 4 - Thomas G. McClay, Harry C. Nye III &
Horseshoe Valley Equine; 5 - Jeffrey Tucker; 6 - EICO Stable; 7 - Berkshire Stud

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