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Kentucky Derby and Horse Racing at The Downey Profile®

Invader, Field Pass Draw Outside As Morning Line Favorites

3/12/2020

Maker, Ward, Gargan Vie

A full dozen will line up for the Jeff Ruby Steaks Saturday at Turfway Park in the hunt for points toward the Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve. The Jeff Ruby Steaks awards 20 points to the winner, 8 to the runner-up, four to the show horse, and two to the horse finishing fourth.

It’s fitting that Invader and Field Pass are one-two on the morning line. Their trainers are neck-and-neck in the standings for the current Turfway Park meet. Mike Maker trains Field Pass, who tops the morning line at 3-1 while Invader, trained by Wesley Ward, is the 7-2 second choice. Ward currently leads Maker 15 wins to 13 in the Turfway standings.

Invader landed post 11 for the Jeff Ruby and Ward said he is happy with the draw. “I like the post,” he said. “He won his last race (the John Battaglia Memorial) towards the outside. He has good natural speed, so he can break from out there and get good position. It beats being on the inside, so it's good to be out there.”

Invader has gained valuable experience in the morning from an accomplished, older workmate. Ward has paired him with Bound for Nowhere, his 6-year-old Grade 2 winner. “He's been working head-and-head with Bound for Nowhere, so he's really doing well,” Ward said. “He owns a lot of flesh, maybe too much; that might be his only downfall.”

Third on the line at 4-1, Myamanoi was fourth in the one-mile Dania Beach Stakes at Gulfstream on Feb. 1 in his last outing, but his finish position doesn’t tell the whole story; he rallied from last in the field of 10 to finish less than a length behind the winner, Field Pass.

Danny Gargan trains Myamanoi for Corms Racing Stable and R. A. Hill Stables. “He's doing really good,” Gargan said. “His last race he got left at the gate and made up a lot of ground. He was the best horse in the race. He doesn't have to come from as far back as last time; he just broke really poorly.

“He should love the distance. I've been dying to run him a mile and an eighth. He's doing so good right now and I don't expect anyone in there to benefit from the distance as much as him. We may need to get a little pace, but I love the way he's progressing. I’m pleased with the post. I think he's going to run a big race, and I expect to win.

“I was pointing for this race even going into (the Dania Beach),” Gargan added. “Plus Jeff Ruby is my favorite restaurant. I can't wait to get to the one in Lexington.”

Myamanoi may have company on a late run to the wire. Although Finnick the Fierce (6-1) was closer to the pace when sprinting to his debut win at Indiana Grand, he has raced well off the pace when routing. The Dialed In gelding will break from post 8, and trainer Rey Hernandez is happy with that outcome.

“The eight is a good post,” Hernandez said. “I'm happy with it. He's definitely the type to come from off the pace, but we'll see how the track is playing. Sometimes they stop and sometimes they keep going.”

The field for the Jeff Ruby Steaks:

 

Post/Horse

Trainer

Rider

Morning Line

1

Dack Janiels

Jack Sisterson

Rafael Bejarano

20-1

2

Toma Todo

Steven Asmussen

Alan Garcia

20-1

3

Fancy Liquor

Michael Maker

Florent Geroux

8-1

4

Unthrottled

Dallas Stewart

Corey Lanerie

30-1

5

Myamanoi

Danny Gargan

Kendrick Carmouche

4-1

6

Halo Again

Steven Asmussen

Rafael Hernandez

6-1

7

Victory Boulevard

Michael Maker

Gerardo Corrales

30-1

8

Finnick the Fierce

Rey Hernandez

Sonny Leon

6-1

9

Austrian

Jose Fernandez

Abel Lezcano

50-1

10

The Stiff

Michael McCarthy

Geovanni Franco

12-1

11

Invader

Wesley Ward

Albin Jimenez

7-2

12

Field Pass

Michael Maker

Irad Ortiz Jr.

3-1

The first of 12 races on Saturday’s card runs at 1:10 p.m. ET. The six stakes run consecutively, starting with the Animal Kingdom Stakes at 3:42 p.m. and ending with the Jeff Ruby Steaks at 6:42 p.m.
 

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