Undefeated Post Time, Recruiter Top Spectacular Bid Noms

January 9, 2023

Recruiter winning the James F. Lewis III Stakes Nov. 12. 2022, under Angel Cruz at Laurel Park. (Jim McCue/MJC)

~ 7F Sprint for 3YOs Among Six Stakes Worth $550,000 in Purses Jan. 21
~ $100,000 Xtra Heat for 3-Year-Old Fillies Attracts 17 Nominees
~ Late Pick 5, Rainbow 6 Carryovers for Jan. 13 Return of Live Racing

David Joseph/Maryland Jockey Club

LAUREL, Md. – Undefeated stakes winners Post Time and Recruiter and Grade 3-placed Prove Right top 24 nominations to the $100,000 Spectacular Bid for newly turned 3-year-olds Saturday, Jan. 21 at Laurel Park.

The seven-furlong Spectacular Bid, named for the Maryland-based Hall of Famer whose 26 career wins included the 1979 Kentucky Derby (G1) and Preakness (G1), is one of six stakes worth $550,000 in purses on the program.

It is the first in Maryland’s series of stakes for sophomores leading up to the 148th Preakness May 20 at historic Pimlico Race Course, followed by the $100,000 Miracle Wood going one mile Feb. 18, $100,000 Private Terms at about 1 1/16 miles March 18 and $125,000 Federico Tesio April 15. Once again, the 1 1/8-mile Tesio will serve as a ‘Win and In’ qualifier for Triple Crown-nominated horses to the Preakness.

Post Time galloping to the win in the Maryland Juvenile under Eric Camacho at Laurel Park Dec. 3, 2022. (Jerry Dzierwinski/MJC)

Hillwood Stable’s Post Time, by Frosted, ran his record to 3-0 with a 3 ¾-length triumph in the seven-furlong Maryland Juvenile Dec. 3, his stakes debut, against fellow Maryland-bred/sired horses. His first two wins, by 8 ¾ combined lengths, came against open company.

Lynch Racing and Nick Sanna Stables’ Recruiter is a Florida-bred son of Army Mule that won each of his three juvenile starts capped by the six-furlong James F. Lewis III at Laurel. He began 2023 with a 2 ¾-length score in the seven-furlong Parx Juvenile Jan. 3.

Trained and co-owned by James Chapman, Prove Right finished third after setting the pace in the Nashua (G3) last November at Aqueduct, and capped 2022 with a one-length optional claiming allowance victory sprinting 5 ½ furlongs Dec. 11 at Laurel. Last out he pressed the pace and wound up fifth in the Turfway Prevue on the all-weather surface at Turfway Park.

Also, among the nominees are Coffeewithchris, Post Time’s stablemate Prince of Jericho and Riccio, the top three finishers from the seven-furlong Heft at Laurel Dec. 30; Maryland Million Nursery runner-up Heldish, third to Recruiter in the Lewis; and B West and My Blue Eyes, each riding two-race win streaks.

Chickieness taking the Maryland Million Lassie under Jaime Rodriguez at Laurel Park on Oct. 22, 2022. (Maryland Jockey Club Photo)

Morris Kernan and Jagger Inc.’s Maryland Million Lassie winner Chickieness, Tommy Town Thoroughbreds’ Golden Gate Debutante winner Sally’s Sassy and Robert Rutherford’s We’ll See, unbeaten in two starts, top 17 nominees to the $100,000 Xtra Heat for 3-year-old fillies.

The Xtra Heat is followed in Maryland’s 3-year-old filly series by the $100,000 Wide Country Feb. 18 at seven furlongs, $100,000 Beyond the Wire going one mile March 18 and $125,000 Weber City Miss April 15. The 1 1/16-mile Weber City Miss offers the winner an automatic berth in the $250,000 Black-Eyed Susan (G2) May 19 at Pimlico.

Most popular among horsemen was the $100,000 Fire Plug for 4-year-olds and up sprinting 6 ½ furlongs with 34 nominees including Daniel Abramowitz’s Greeley and Ben, last out winner of the six-furlong Fall Highweight (G3) in November at Aqueduct; Factor It In, front-running winner of the six-furlong Dave’s Friend Dec. 30 at Laurel, and fellow multiple stakes winners Alwaysinahurry, Beren, Double Crown, No Cents, Shake Em Loose, Threes Over Deuces and Repo Rocks, the latter third in the 2022 Jan Nerud (G2) at Belmont Park.

Fille d’Esprit winning the Politely Stakes under Xavier Perez at Laurel Park Nov. 25. (Jim McCue/MJC)

Tsunebumi and Sekie Yoshihara’s 2022 Fantasy (G3) winner Yuugiri, a front-running allowance winner Dec. 30 at Oaklawn Park in her first race since the Kentucky Oaks (G1); Beguine, beaten a neck in the Fantasy; and multiple stakes winners Buy the Best, Disco Ebo, Dontletsweetfoolya, Fille d’Esprit, Malibu Beauty and Swayin to and Fro head 22 nominations to the $100,000 What a Summer for fillies and mares 4 and up sprinting six furlongs.

Rounding out the stakes action are a pair of $75,000 events for Maryland-bred/sired horses, each at one mile – the Jennings for 4-year-olds and up and Geisha for fillies and mares 4 and older.

Several horses from the Fire Plug are cross-nominated to the Jennings including 2021 Maryland Million Sprint winner Air Token and 2021 Robert Hilton Memorial winner Exculpatory, as well as stakes winners Galerio, Local Motive, Ournationonparade and Vance Scholars.

Fille d’Espit and Malibu Beauty are among 18 nominees to the Geisha, joined by such horses as Acadian Girl, a winner of four straight races by 19 ½ combined lengths; Intrepid Dream, riding a three-race win streak; and Sweet Gracie, third to Fille d’Esprit and Malibu Beauty in the Maryland Million Distaff.

Notes: Jockey Jeiron Barbosa, named Jan. 7 as an Eclipse Award finalist for champion apprentice, swept the late daily double Sunday with Up Against It ($14.40) in Race 7 and Blame the Bourbon ($5) in Race 8 … 

There will be carryovers of $8,594.49 in the 50-cent Late Pick 5 and $3,030.86 in the 20-cent Rainbow 6 when live racing returns to Laurel Park Friday, Jan. 13 … 

Tickets with five of six winners in Sunday’s Late Pick 5 returned $119.35, while those with five of six winners in the Rainbow 6 were worth $356.36.

What a day for @jonathanstettin who had the Rainbow 6 twice! That’s why he’s the KING!

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