Veteran LA Breds Meet in Star Guitar Stakes
Category : News
Fri 25/03/2016 - 16:31 EDT
Named for one of the most successful Louisiana-bred horses of all-time, the $60,000 Star Guitar Stakes is the first of nine stakes races on the card March 26 at Fair Grounds as a field of six state-breds will contest the mile and one sixteenth event on the main track.
Sunbeam, a million dollar plus career earner, is the 2/1 morning line favorite, but the six year-old gelded son of Brahms has plenty to prove after spending a year on the sidelines with physical issues before returning to run fourth in a February 27 stakes race on the grass. Always a dirt horse, the dull effort was the Ron Faucheux trainee's first try on turf. Back to his preferred surface, Sunbeam is the one to beat, but bettors may be leary about taking too short of a price on a horse that may very well be past his prime.
One King's Man (5/2) exits the same race as Sunbeam where he finished next-to-last in the 12-horse field. His effort can also be attributed to the surface switch, but like Sunbeam, One King's Man could be slowing down in his old age. Also a six year-old gelding, the Joe Sharp trainee has not recorded a Beyer Figure over 90 since February of 2015. He may not need to be as fast as his former self to find the winner's circle against this group, but taking a short price on a declining runner is never the most appealing betting strategy.
Zapper could vanquish foes on dirt
Hot Zapper (6/1) has raced primarily on turf for trainer Andrew Leggio, but has always trained sharply on dirt - never more evident than the series of fast drills the five year-old Ghostzapper gelding has posted in preparation for this start. The pedigree suggests dirt top and bottom and this runner last raced over the surface in 2014 when he was a shadow of the horse he's become. In three dirt races Hot Zapper won once and finished second twice, making him a heady play at a fair price.
The Grade 2 $1.25 million Pennsylvania Derby features the two biggest names from the Triple Crown trail September 24 at Parx as a field of 12 gathers in one of the most intriguing betting races of the year.
The $1 million Cotillion Stakes September 24 at Parx features a true clash of the titans as the six-horse field is headlined by the undefeated, five-time grade 1 winner Songbird who figures to face the most stern challenge of her career.
In a completely wide open renewal of the Presque Isle Mile September 18 at Presque Isle Downs, 13 runners including the also-eligible will contest the eight furlong trip over synthetic footing.
Champion Songbird is set to make her much-anticipated return to the races in the $200,000 Summertime Oaks at Santa Anita on Saturday. The Grade 2 event will be run at a mile and a sixteenth and has attracted a field of seven.