Private Zone Returns in True North Stakes

Private Zone Returns in True North Stakes

Photo by NYRA/Coglianese Photos/Courtney Heeney

The sensational sprinter Private Zone, a multiple grade I winner and runner-up in the 2015 Breeders’ Cup Sprint (gr. I), will make his much-anticipated 2016 debut in the True North Stakes (gr. II) on June 10th at Belmont Park.

Trained by Brian Lynch, the seven-year-old son of Macho Uno has not run since finishing fifth in the Cigar Mile (gr. I) at the end of a busy 2015 campaign that saw him win three graded stakes races, including the Forego (gr. I) at Saratoga, in impressive fashion. Given a winter break, Private Zone returned to serious training early this year and has been breezing steadily in preparation for the True North, and five of his last six workouts have been bullets. On June 2nd, he breezed four furlongs in :46 flat from the starting gate at Belmont Park, a workout that ranked as the fast of 55 morning workouts at that distance.

But Private Zone will be facing a very solid field in the six-furlong True North, including the grade I winner Dads Caps and the up-and-coming duo of Catalina Red and Always Sunshine, who are coming off of wins in the Churchill Downs Stakes (gr. II) and Maryland Sprint Handicap (gr. III), respectively. Rounding out the field is the consistent graded stakes competitor Holy Boss, who has earned triple-digit Beyer speed figures in six of his last seven races, and Joking, who has won two straight races including the six-furlong Diablo Stakes at Belmont last month.

The True North Stakes is one of six stakes races scheduled for Friday at Belmont Park and will be held as the eighth race on the card. The post positions are as follows:

True North Stakes (gr. II)
PP, Horse, Jockey, Trainer
1 Holy Boss, John Velazquez, Steve Asmussen
2 Joking, Manuel Franco, Charlton Baker
3 Private Zone, Martin Pedroza, Brian Lynch
4 Dads Caps, Irad Ortiz Jr., Gustavo Rodriguez
5 Catalina Red, Javier Castellano, Jorge Navarro
6 Always Sunshine, F. Pennington, Edward Allard

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Follow J. Keeler Johnson ("Keelerman"):

J. Keeler Johnson is a writer, blogger, videographer, and all-around horse racing enthusiast who was drawn to the sport by Curlin's quest to become North America's richest racehorse. A great fan of racing history, he considers Dr. Fager to be the greatest racehorse ever produced in America, but counts Zenyatta as his all-time favorite. He lives in Wisconsin and also writes for the blog Unlocking Winners.

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