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Kentucky Derby and Horse Racing at The Downey Profile®

Eleven to Run in Smooth Air

3/1/2014

Smooth Air Todd Pletcher sends two Triple Crown nominees into the one-mile Smooth Air Stakes at Calder Race Course on Sunday, and they're joined by other nominees.

King Cyrus will make his first start since last October for Pletcher. He has one stakes appearance under his belt – the Hopeful Stakes in September – when he finished eighth. That came after breaking his maiden first time out by 11 lengths in a seven-furlong maiden special weight race at Saratoga in August. Monopolize, scratched from the Gotham Stakes, makes his stakes debut. He's one-for-three lifetime with his only victory coming in a mile and 70 yard maiden special weight race at Aqueduct in December. Monopolize is the 4-1 second choice in the morning line, and King Cyrus is 5-1.

Trainer Angel Rodriguez’s nominee Kulboyz, the morning line favorite at 3-1, makes his stakes debut in the Smooth Air. Kulboyz went straight to the winner’s circle in his only career appearance in a six-furlong maiden special weight race at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 23, scoring by 2 1/2 lengths. Connections hope to send him down the Triple Crown Trail if he perform well.

Trainer Gennadi Dorochenko has Triple Crown nominee Tashir entered at a 6-1 morning line. In his most recent start in the seven-furlong Hutcheson Stakes, he ran sixth. In his other career stakes appearances at Delaware Park, he finished fourth in the 5 1/2-furlong Strike Your Colors Stakes in July and third in the one-mile Whirling Ash Stakes in September. He is currently 2-for-7 lifetime with wins at Delaware and Calder.

Trainer Efren Loza, Jr. sends out two nominees in Giancarlo and Gone as Wind. Giancarlo scored a victory on Feb. 15 in a seven-furlong allowance optional claiming race at Tampa Bay Downs, and Loza said at the time he would point Giancarlo to the March 8 Tampa Bay Derby. Two starts prior, Giancarlo finished third making his stakes debut in the seven-furlong Pasco Stakes. Gone as Wind most recently won a mile allowance at Calder on Feb. 14,

The second and third-place finishers in that allowance are also entered for the Smooth Air, Roar of Raul for trainer Luis Ramirez and Condestable for trainer Javier Negrete. Roar of Paul's one win from seven starts came in August at Evangeline Downs in a six-furlong maiden claiming race. Condestable broke his maiden one start prior at Calder in a 1 1/16-mile maiden special weight race on the turf on Jan. 26.

The rest of the field is comprised of other horses making their stakes debuts. Trainer Antonio Sano sends out Sea of Faces. He has two wins from four career appearances, all coming at Gulfstream. Trainer Michael Wilson has Gaining Ground entered. Gaining Ground broke his maiden in his most recent start at Gulfstream in his sixth lifetime appearance. Trainer Michael Yates entry Kodiak Kody broke his maiden last time out in just his second career start at Calder.

Edited Calder release with additional content by Dick Downey

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