Galloping out, Spring Meet special events, upcoming stakes probables and more!
LEXINGTON, Ky.—Tom Durant’s veteran Silver Dust can inch closer to the million-dollar mark in earnings Saturday should he capture the 1 1/8-mile, $150,000 Ben Ali (G3) and its $90,000 top prize.
Trained by Bret Calhoun, the 7-year-old Silver Dust is a three-time Grade 3 winner with four other placings in graded events in his career that began in the fall of 2016. Silver Dust owns a record of 32-6-7-5 for earnings of $885,677.
“Last year, he was all dressed up with nowhere to go because of the pandemic,” Calhoun said. “There were a lot of races that went away and now there are plenty of races for older horses.”
Silver Dust will be making his second start of the year Saturday after closing 2020 with a 10th-place finish at Keeneland in the Big Ass Fans Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1).
“I ran him on the grass at Fair Grounds (March 7) because he could walk right out of his stall and not have to ship for a dirt race,” Calhoun said. “He got enough out of it that it set him up well for this spot. This is the right spot at the right time.”
WinStar Farm and CHC Inc.’s Sainthood, second in the Jeff Ruby Steaks (G3) at Turfway Park on March 27, on Friday worked a half-mile in company in :48.60 over a fast track with Amelia Green in the saddle.
Sainthood, trained by Todd Pletcher, accumulated 40 points toward the $3 million Kentucky Derby (G1) Presented by Woodford Reserve, a total that ranks 18th on the Derby leaderboard with two points races remaining. The Derby is limited to the top 20 point earners that pass the entry box.
“We are planning on it,” WinStar President/CEO and Racing Manager Elliott Walden said of running in the Derby. “He worked great. It was textbook.”
Working with maiden winner Donegal Bay, Sainthood produced fractions of :12.80, :24.60 and :48.60 and then galloped out five-eighths in 1:01, 6 furlongs in 1:13.80 and seven-eighths in 1:27.60.
Sainthood is scheduled to ship to Churchill Downs Sunday morning after training hours. …
Ferrin Peterson, who has been riding races for four years, is scheduled for her first Keeneland mount Friday afternoon when she rides Alex Campbell Jr.’s Bernadette the Jet for trainer Graham Motion in the fourth race.
“I have been to Keeneland many times, but it never coincided with a race meet,” said Peterson who came to Keeneland to gallop horses for Motion when Laurel was shut down because of equine herpesvirus. “Laurel is back open now and I am going back this weekend, but I couldn’t pass up the chance to ride here for Graham.” …
Keeneland Racing Analyst Tom Leach talked to these trainers about horses in upcoming stakes.
Richard Baltas on Noble Reflection in Saturday’s Stonestreet Lexington (G3).
Dan Blacker on Hit the Road in Friday’s Maker’s Mark Mile (G1).
Brad Cox on his two Friday entrants, Goin’ Good in the TVG Limestone Turf Sprint and Darain (GB) in the Maker’s Mark Mile.
Mike Maker on Field Pass and Somelikeithotbrown in the Maker’s Mark Mile.
UPCOMING STAKES PROBABLES
Race Friday, April 16. Entries taken Sunday
$100,000 Baird Doubledogdare (G3) – Bajan Girl (trainer Rohan Crichton), Bonny South (Brad Cox), Eres Tu (Arnaud Delacour), Graceful Princess (Todd Pletcher), His Glory (Joe Sharp), Royal Flag (Chad Brown), Speech (Michael McCarthy).
Race Saturday, April 17. Entries taken Wednesday, April 14
$200,000 Elkhorn (G2) – Crafty Daddy (Kenny McPeek), Fantasioso (ARG) (Ignacio Correas IV), Red Knight (Bill Mott).
SPRING MEET SPECIAL EVENTS
Friday, April 9
The popular College Scholarship Day Presented by Lane’s End is being held virtually. Students may click here to pre-register by 5 p.m. today for a chance to win one of $35,000 in scholarships or a prize package provided by a local Lexington business. Lane’s End is giving two students a chance to win a $5,000 scholarship and enjoy a day at the races. Coca-Cola and Kentucky Thoroughbred Association, additional sponsors of the event, will give away a total of $25,000 in scholarships.
Saturday, April 10
On the day of the Coolmore Jenny Wiley (G1), Stonestreet Lexington (G3), Ben Ali (G3) and Giant’s Causeway (L), Keeneland will hold the $3,000 Grade One Gamble handicapping contest. Prizes include cash and as many as six berths in the Breeders’ Cup Betting Challenge and 10 spots in the National Horseplayers Championship. The Grade One Gamble is open to players who use an ADW. The deadline to enter is noon on April 10.
Sunday, April 11
For the Kids Club Family Day Presented by Kentucky Children’s Hospital, five lucky families will have the chance to enjoy a day at the races. Kids Club Families will be emailed a registration link to enter to win the contest.
Keeneland Barn Notes
Photo: Silver Dust winning the West Virginia Governor’s Stakes at Charles Town February 11, 2020. (Coady Photography)