With a terrific weekend of racing on schedule, it could be easy to overlook an unheralded grade III race at Monmouth Park, but if you’re looking for bragging rights and would like to find a future star runner before the majority of racing fans have taken notice, it might pay to look in less obvious places this weekend.
Specifically, the race I have in mind is the Salvator Mile Stakes (gr. III) at Monmouth Park, a one-mile race that has been won in recent years by talented horses such as Itsmyluckyday, Kensei, Gottcha Gold, and Flower Alley. But this year’s field may be one of the best in the race’s history, and there are a couple of horses entered in the race that appear poised for big things in the second half of the year.
The first is Race Day, a Todd Pletcher-trained son of Tapit that has won five of his last six starts, including the Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II) and Razorback Handicap (gr. III) at Oaklawn Park. He’s got excellent tactical speed, as well as the ability to settle off the lead, and his final times in the Oaklawn Handicap and Razorback translated to impressive Beyer speed figures of 110 and 106. He hasn’t run since April, but has turned in some sharp workouts in preparation for his return, and if he picks up where he left off, expect to see him be a factor in some very big races later this summer.
Oaklawn Handicap (gr. II)
Razorback Handicap (gr. III)
The complete entries for the Salvator Mile are as follows:
Salvator Mile Stakes (gr. III)
1 Fabulous Kid, Trevor McCarthy, Tim Ice
2 Pants On Fire, Paco Lopez, Kelly Breen
3 Bradester, Corey Lanerie, Eddie Keneally
4 Just Call Kenny, Daniel Centeno, Patrick McBurney
5 Valid, Orlando Bocachica, Marcus Vitali
6 Red Vine, Joe Bravo, Christophe Clement
7 Coup de Grace, Kerwin Clark, Larry Jones
8 Race Day, John Velazquez, Todd Pletcher
9 Don Dulce, Irad Ortiz Jr., David Jacobson
10 Decisive Moment, Abel Castellano Jr., Kathleen O’Connell