Breeders’ Cup Photo ©
It was confirmed earlier today that Upstart, winner of the Holy Bull Stakes (gr. II) and runner-up in the Florida Derby (gr. I), will run in the $1,600,000 Travers Stakes (gr. I) on August 29th at Saratoga after previous plans called for him to scratch.
Trained by Richard Violette Jr., Upstart was entered in the Travers with the plan of scratching if Triple Crown winner American Pharoah started in the race, but according to the Saratoga Race Course Notes for August 28th, Violette changed his plans after Upstart galloped 11 furlongs in impressive fashion this morning.
“He’s doing great. We’re going to run,” Violette said. “That’s the plan. American Pharoah looked fabulous, too. He looked great, but my horse is doing good, too, so we’re going to take a shot.”
“It’s a mile and a quarter, and American Pharoah’s most difficult race was in the Derby going the mile and a quarter,” Violette said. “I know even Bob Baffert is concerned when the traveling and the long, steady series of training and performances might catch up to him. Obviously, he thinks he’s got his ‘A’ game or he wouldn’t have brought him, but sometimes you don’t know until the afternoon.”
Upstart will start from post one in the Travers, just inside of American Pharoah, and is 15-1 on the morning line.