Photo Credit Chelsea Durand
Saturday’s Cigar Mile Day will be bolstered with the rescheduled $125,000 Autumn Days for fillies and mares 3-years-old and up at Aqueduct Racetrack. Originally scheduled for last Sunday before inclement weather cancelled the card, the re-drawn six-furlong turf sprint will feature a full field of 12, plus six main-track only entrants.
Headlining the full field for the six-furlong event over the outer turf is ultra-consistent Fire Key, who won the 2017 Autumn Days. Trained by Jim Ryerson, the 6-year-old New York-bred daughter of Friesan Fire is a five-time stakes winner and arrives at Saturday’s race off of a victory in the Floral Park at Belmont Park, which she won for a second straight year.
The Backwards Stable homebred acquired graded stakes black type in the summer, finishing a close second to Significant Form in the Grade 3 Intercontinental over the Widener turf course at Belmont Park.
Making her tenth start of 2019 in the Autumn Days, Fire Key joined Ryerson’s barn in the spring and made her first start for the veteran conditioner, leading at every point of call in a win in the License Fee on April 28 over a yielding inner turf at Belmont Park.
“She’s been really nice. I got her this year for the first time, but in years past she’s been a real consistent sprinter and we’ve had a lot of fun,” Ryerson said. “She’s been really good to us. She’s doing fine and has done very well at three quarters. She had trouble the past couple of years going five and a half so we’re happy to be at three quarters, which is her best distance. She’s got a lot of class, a nice big filly and she’s easy to train. Just really a pleasure to be around.”
Jockey Jose Ortiz will pilot Fire Key from post 7.
Curragh Stables’ Broadway Run has finished behind Fire Key in all four of her starts this year and will attempt to make amends when breaking from post 4.
Trained by John Terranova, Broadway Run was second beaten a nose to Fire Key in the License Fee in April, where she ran a career-best 90 Beyer Speed Figure which she subsequently matched in Grade 3 Intercontinental, where she was a close fourth.
The dark bay Florida-bred daughter of Prospective lit up the tote board in her career debut last May scoring at 50-1 odds over Belmont Park’s Widener turf course before winning the Coronation Cup at Saratoga two starts later.
Broadway Run will receive the riding services of Luis Saez.
Trainer Christophe Clement will send out Athlone Racing’s Rose Flower who arrives off an allowance score over the Widener turf on October 24.
The German-bred sophomore was a stakes winner in France before joining Clement’s stable in the fall. She made her North American debut in the Christiecat on September 8 at Belmont Park, finishing third beaten 3 ¾ lengths to Turf War.
Rose Flower, a daughter of Dabirsim, will break from post 3 under Joel Rosario.
Completing the field are Rocky Policy [post 1, Javier Castellano], Boos [post 2, Irad Ortiz, Jr.] Jc’s Shooting Star [post 5, Manny Franco], Mentality, Saratoga Treasure [post 8, Eric Cancel], Wildcat Combat [post 9, Dexter Haddock], and Moonlight Romance [post 10, John Velazquez].
Angel At War, Our Circle of Love, Miss Imperial, Calinas Song, Slimey and Carrizo have been entered for main track only.
The third running of the Autumn Days is carded as Race 4 on a 10-race slate that features six stakes, highlighted by the Grade 1, $750,000 Cigar Mile. First post is 11:30 a.m. Eastern.