Henley's Joy, Louder Than Bombs Highlight Field
Entries for the Transylvania Stakes at Keeneland have closed, and Henley’s Joy arguably tops a well-balanced field of 11 runners entered for the race on Friday going 1 1/16 mile on turf.
Trained by Mike Maker, Henley’s Joy has compiled a 6-3-2-0 mark on the grass. In his lone Keeneland appearance, he finished second, beaten a nose in last fall’s Dixiana Bourbon.
Tyler Gaffalione has the mount on Henley’s Joy, who will break from post position 10.
Invading from Florida is the consistent Louder Than Bombs, trained by David Fawkes.
Louder Than Bombs enters Friday’s race off a third-place finish in the Palm Beach at Gulfstream Park on March 2. Luis Saez has the mount and will break from post position 7.
Today, on another so-cold-you-can-see-your-breath morning at Keeneland, David Fawkes was holding the shank on one of his runners at the east end of the Keeneland stakes barn.
“I haven’t raced here in three years since Sheer Drama won the Madison,” Fawkes said. “The morning after was like this and Joe (Bravo) was her hot walker.”
Louder Than Bombs, a son of Violence, figures to be one of the favorites in the Transylvania.
“He is a high energy horse and full of life,” said Fawkes, “We had a choice of the (Cutler Bay) stakes last Saturday at Gulfstream or here. He needs them to back up, and I thought there was a better chance of that here.”
Fawkes talked about plans beyond Friday.
“We have two targets,” Fawkes said. “After this race, he will either stay here or go over to Churchill Downs for the American Turf on Derby Day.”
Rain is in the forecast for Friday, and Louder Than Bombs might encounter conditions he has not faced. Fawkes said he's not worried.
“I think he needs a little give in the ground, and he has never had that,” Fawkes said.
Post time for the Kentucky Utilities Transylvania, the ninth race on the 10-race Friday program, is 5:30 p.m. First post is 1:05 p.m.
Transylvania Entries with Morning Line