SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Eddie F’s Racing’s Dream Central brings an undefeated record in stakes company to Thursday’s $150,000 NYSSS Statue of Liberty, a one-mile inner turf test for eligible New York-sired sophomore fillies, at Saratoga Race Course.
Trained by Gary Sciacca, the Central Banker bay has been picture perfect in her last two outings, graduating in style, by a neck, at odds of 39-1 in the NYSSS Cupecoy’s Joy in June at Belmont Park before posting a head score last out in the Suzie O’Cain against fellow state-breds on July 20 at the Spa.
Dream Central, a veteran of eight starts, overcame a troubled trip to win the seven-furlong Cupecoy’s Joy, splitting rivals late under Jose Lezcano to secure the narrow win. Last out, Dream Central had a clear run down the lane in the 1 1/16-mile Suzie O’Cain, kicking in late under Lezcano to find the wire in the nick of time over the Christophe Clement-trained She’s a Mia to register a career-best 74 Beyer Speed Figure
“She’s unbelievable. Once she hit the grass, she’s really done well,” Sciacca said. “That was an easier field [in the Cupecoy’s Joy] but when she beat Clement’s horse last time, she showed guts and determination.”
Dream Central breezed a half-mile in 49.72 on August 8 over the Oklahoma training track in her first breeze back from the Suzie O’Cain and Sciacca said he let the filly stretch her legs again this morning.
“She’s doing real well. I let her run three-eighths down the lane today. She went slow but we let her pick it up a little bit,” Sciacca said. “She’s a picky filly, but she’s eating well and I just don’t want her to back up off her feed this close to the race.”
With Lezcano committed to maiden winner Busy Morning, Javier Castellano will pick up the mount. The Hall of Fame rider is enjoying a strong summer meet with a record of 81-16-9-5 heading into Saturday’s card, good for a 20 percent win percentage led by stakes scores with New York-bred Robin Sparkles in the Grade 3 Caress and Tarabi in the Wilton.
Sciacca said he is hopeful Castellano can work out an off-the-pace trip.
“She wants to sit right off them, let them go to the front, and then make one run at them,” Sciacca said. “She’s a fighter. She fights to the end.”
Sciacca said he appreciates having a horse that is eligible for both the New York-sired and New York-bred races.
“It’s always nice to have one for this program that can run. It makes things a lot easier,” Sciacca said.
Bred in the Empire State by Fedwell Farms, Dream Central will leave from post 4.
NY Final Furlong Racing Stable, Designated Hitters Racing, Sportsmen Stable and Jeremy Peskoff’s Busy Morning garnered a 75 Beyer for her six-length graduation last out in a six-furlong state-bred maiden turf sprint on June 25 at Belmont.
Trained by Jorge Abreu, Busy Morning closed to finish third in her May debut traveling one mile at Belmont, finishing 1 1/4-lengths back of next-out allowance winner Out of Sight.
The War Dancer bay, bred in New York by Blue Chip Bloodstock, was purchased for $50,000 at the OBS March Sale of 2-Year-Olds in Training.
Lezcano retains the mount from post 6.
Michael Dubb, Madaket Stables and Michael J. Caruso’s maiden Robyn and Eli overcame a slow start to complete the exacta behind Dream Central in the NYSSS Cupecoy’s Joy.
Trained by Chad Brown, the Laoban bay, who was second in each of her first three starts, finished an uncharacteristic ninth last out in a 1 1/16-mile state-bred maiden special weight against older company on July 16 at the Spa.
Robyn and Eli, bred in New York by Sequel Stallions NY, Harry Landry and William Hebert, will exit post 2 under Manny Franco.
Commonwealth New Era Racing’s Howdyoumakeurmoney, by Freud, graduated at second asking sprinting 5 1/2 furlongs over the turf in September at Saratoga for trainer Michael Trombetta.
She followed by taking the Presque Isle Debutante over synthetic footing on October 4 and has since hit the board in a pair of synthetic stakes, including the seven-furlong Glorious Song on October 30 at Woodbine and the six-furlong Serena’s Song in March at Turfway Park. Howdyoumakeurmoney was an even fourth as the mutuel favorite in the Cupecoy’s Joy ahead of a rallying fourth last out in the Alywow on July 9, traveling 6 1/2-furlongs over the Woodbine turf.
Joel Rosario has the call from post 5.
Rounding out the field are turf debutante Eros’s Girl [post 8, Kevin Navarro], winner of the Niagara on July 4 at Finger Lakes; stakes-placed maiden Royal Dancer [post 3, Irad Ortiz, Jr.]; allowance winner Golden Rocket [post 1, Jose Gomez]; and maiden Tara Dancer [post 7, Jose Ortiz].
The NYSSS Statue of Liberty is slated as Race 9 on Thursday’s 10-race card. First post is 1:05 p.m. Eastern.
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Main photo: Dream Central in the Saratoga winner’s circle following her Suzie O’Cain triumph (Susie Raisher)