Cox Has Chance At Keeneland Stakes History 

April 21, 2022

LEXINGTON, Ky.—No trainer has won more than four stakes during a Keeneland race meet, but by the time the dust settles Saturday afternoon, Brad Cox could eclipse that mark. 

Half of Cox’s six victories at the meet have come in stakes, starting opening weekend with Just One Time in the Madison (G1) and Matareya in the Beaumont (G3) Presented by Keeneland Select. He added No. 3 last Saturday with Tawny Port in the Stonestreet Lexington (G3). 

On Friday, Cox will send out Juddmonte’s Bonny South in the Baird Doubledogdare (G3) and Saturday will saddle Twin Creeks Racing Stables’ Warrant in the Ben Ali (G3). Both horses are scheduled to arrive at Keeneland today from Churchill Downs. 

Bonny South won The Baird Doubledogdare G3 April 16, 2021. (Coady Photography)

Three trainers have had four stakes victories during a Spring Meet: Ben Jones in 1948 during an 11-day meet, Todd Pletcher in the 15-day meet in 2011 and Chad Brown in the 16-day meet in 2018. 

During the Fall Meet, D. Wayne Lukas had four stakes victories during 16-day seasons in 1994 and 1995; Mark Casse and Graham Motion each notched four stakes victories in 2016’s 17-day meet. 

In Due Time Derby Decision Will Come … In Due Time

The possible participation by Edge Racing, Medallion Racing and Parkland Thoroughbreds’ In Due Time in the 148th Kentucky Derby (G1) Presented by Woodford Reserve remains in a holding pattern following his third-place finish in last Saturday’s Stonestreet Lexington (G3). 

“Right now the owners are in Ocala buying horses, and I am here for another week,” trainer Kelly Breen said Thursday morning at Keeneland. “Then we’ll decide whether we are going to Jersey or to Churchill.” Breen has a summer base at Monmouth Park in New Jersey.

The Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs is limited to the top 20 point earners from a series of races that pass the entry box May 2. The Stonestreet Lexington result left In Due Time in 22ndplace and in need of two defections to gain a possible spot in the May 7 starting gate. 

Coady Photography

“I was a little disappointed in his race,” Breen said of the Stonestreet Lexington. “He was in traffic and when (jockey) Paco (Lopez) got him to the quarter pole, he grinded it out to the finish. 

“The Preakness would not be a bad option, but it is the Derby,” added Breen about the pending decision.

Breen has had three Kentucky Derby starters with his most recent coming in 2011 with Pants On Fire

Prospective Field For Closing-Day Bewitch

Entries taken Sunday. Race Friday, April 29.

$300,000 BEWITCH (G3) – Queen Goddess (trainer Michael McCarthy). Possible: Core Values (Vicki Oliver), Janelle Monae (BRZ) (Brad Cox), La Lune (GB) (Edward Vaughan), Stand Tall (Rusty Arnold).

Spring Meet Week 3 Special Events

All Year
Official Keeneland Tours. 
Visit keeneland.com/tours for availability and to purchase.

Every Friday and Saturday
The Hill. 
No ticket or reservation is required for Keeneland’s popular free tailgating area on The Hill, which is open Fridays and Saturdays and offers a unique way to experience the Spring Meet. Fans on The Hill can participate in the racing action via a jumbo TV and wagering, while food trucks and live music presented by The Burl create a festive atmosphere. Those who wish to elevate their tailgating experience can book a premium package that includes tent, tables, amenities, reserved area for the day and more with the Tailgate Guys “A REVELxp Company.” Visit Keeneland.com/tailgating for details.

Friday, April 22
Spring Handicapping Challenge. Available only at the track, the Spring Handicapping Challenge offers one berth to the Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge (BCBC) in November at Keeneland and as many as four spots to the 2023 National Handicapping Challenge. (NHC). Players will wager a live bankroll of $250 on any or all of the races at Keeneland. Click hereto register and for more information. Contestants may enter until 12:45 p.m. the day of the contest.

Saturday, April 23
Sunrise Trackside. 
This morning program is geared toward families and offers a unique view of Thoroughbreds during training hours. Children’s activities, located on the first-floor Grandstand from 8-10 a.m., include a meet and greet with Keeneland’s mascot, Buckles, along with face painting, games and more. Fans can enjoy coffee and donuts at Clockers Corner while watching horses train. Mini tours are available at the Welcome Stand in the Paddock. A 30-minute demonstration in the Walking Ring begins at 8:30 a.m.

Grade 1 Gamble. The signature handicapping contest of the Spring Meet is the Grade 1 Gamble, which Keeneland is hosting in cooperation with XpressBet, NYRABets, 4NJ Bets and TVG on the day of the Elkhorn (G2) and Ben Ali (G3). The entry fee is $3,500 with $2,500 going to a live bankroll and $1,000 to the prize fund. Contestants may play at Keeneland or on one of the aforementioned ADW platforms; Keeneland also will accept phone wagers from players residing in states or provinces that do not permit ADW wagering. Prizes include an estimated $75,000 for first place (based on 300 entries) and as many as six Breeders’ Cup Betting Contest berths and 10 National Handicapping Championship spots. Click here to register.

Sunday, April 24
Military Day at the Races. This event recognizes the men and women who serve our country. All active duty, reserve, veterans and military families receive free general admission and reserved Grandstand seating with a military I.D.

Keeneland’s 15-day Spring Meet runs through Friday, April 29. 
First post is 1 p.m. ET except April 29 when the first post is 12:30 p.m.

Spring Meet Leaders

Through April 20 (8 days of 15-day season)

JockeyStartsWins2nd3rdPurses
Tyler Gaffalione471236$1,165,290
Irad Ortiz Jr.5110148$1,769,105
Flavien Prat401046$1,743,107
Luis Saez47769$1,141,615
Gerardo Corrales22622$492,364
TrainerStartsWins2nd3rdPurses
Wesley Ward27744$735,185
Chad Brown29691$1,583,109
Brad Cox26635$1,034,560
Todd Pletcher20442$885,886
Brendan Walsh13420$409,021
Mike Maker23424$264,816
OwnerWins
Godolphin (Mohammed Al Maktoum et al)3
Stonestreet Stables (Barbara Banke)3
Calumet Farm (Brad Kelley)2

Keeneland Press Release
Photo: Brad Cox in a post-win interview. (Coady Photography)

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