Cuts Back to One Turn for July 3 Princess Rooney (G2) Prep
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – John Minchello’s Competitive Speed is scheduled to make her first start since experiencing a rough trip in the April 30 Kentucky Oaks (G1) while taking on six other 3-year-old fillies in the $75,000 Game Face Saturday at Gulfstream Park.
The Game Face, a 6 ½-furlong prep for the July 3 $350,000 Princess Rooney (G2), will co-headline Saturday’s 12-race program with the $60,000 Hollywood Lakes, a six-furlong sprint for 3-year-olds and up in which multiple graded-stakes winner Diamond Oops is slated to prep for the July 3 $200,000 Smile Sprint (G3).
Competitive Speed will be seeking to rebound from her off-the-board finish in the Kentucky Oaks, in which she was bumped back at the start.
“She really didn’t get the opportunity to run,” trainer Javier Gonzalez said. “She had another problem on the first turn.”
The daughter of Competitive Edge, who had qualified for the 1 1/8-mile Oaks with back-to-back third-place finishes in the Davona Dale (G2) and the Gulfstream Park Oaks (G2) during the Championship Meet, will cut back to one-turn for the Game Face. Competitive Speed won three straight races in going-away fashion around one turn after finishing off the board in her Oct. 31 debut. She followed up a 1 ½-length maiden claiming score with a 4 ½-length starter allowance romp and a three-length triumph in the 6 ½-furlong Glitter Woman.
“Her best Beyer [Speed Figure] was at the 6 ½-furlong distance that she is going to run,” Gonzalez said. “I think she can go two turns, but her best race was in the Glitter Woman.”
Leonel Reyes, who was aboard for all three of her victories, has the call on the Kentucky-bred filly.
Rigney Racing LLC’s Minute Waltz, who finished third in an optional claiming allowance on the Kentucky Oaks undercard, comes to Gulfstream Park in search of black type. The Philip Bauer-trained daughter of Nyquist has gone winless in five starts since her eye-catching debut victory Oct. 20 at Churchill.
Samy Camacho is scheduled to ride Minute Waltz for the first time Saturday.
Legacy Racing LLC’s Coach Jer’s Joy, who was an impressive debut winner in the race in which Competitive Speed debuted less successfully, will clash again with the Gonzalez trainee in the Game Face. The Saffie Joseph Jr.-trained filly went on to finish off the board in the Forward Gal (G3) and the Any Limit during the Championship Meet before capturing a seven-furlong optional claiming allowance at Tampa Bay Downs last time out.
Edwin Gonzalez has the call on the daughter of Palace.
Shea D Boy’s Stable’s Shea D Summer returns to dirt Saturday after finishing second in a five-furlong turf sprint. The Carlos David trainee won her first two career starts on dirt, including an impressive score in the 6 ½-furlong Juvenile Filly Sprint for Florida-breds at Gulfstream Park West last fall.
Lowwood Farm LLC and trainer Fernando Abreu’s Mon Petit Chou, who is coming off back-to-back optional claiming allowance wins; trainer Roger Laurin’s Pacific Princess, a starter allowance winner last time out; and Heehaw Racing’s Sweet Baby Raelynn, who was most recently second behind Mon Petit Chou, round out the field.
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Gulfstream Park Press Release
Photo: Competitive Speed, (Ryan Thompson)