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Saturday Stakes Preview: Gulfstream Park Shines
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 14, 2018
by: Rich Bieglmeier
Gulfstream Park will host five graded stakes races Saturday, December 15th for both turf and dirt horses.
Fort Lauderdale (G2T)
At 1 1/8 miles on the turf, horses 3 and up will vie for their piece of a $200,000 purse. Racing fans will find a stacked field of 16 in the Fort Lauderdale Stakes. The field also includes five grade 1 winners including ALMANAAR , DIVISIDERO , GLORIOUS EMPIRE , HI HAPPY and QUARTETO DE CORDAS.
Each of these Grade 1 runners had their last start in the Breeders' Cup. DIVISIDERO's last race was the Breeders' Cup Mile where he finished fourth on the dirt. ALMANAAR is trained by Chad Brown and is coming off a 10th place finish in the Breeders' Cup Mile as well. HI HAPPY and QUARTETO DE CORDAS both ran in the Breeders' Cup Turf as their last starts finishing 9th and 10th respectively, while GLORIOUS EMPIRE came in behind them in 13th place.
Today is a new day. So you can forget how some may have been overmatched at the Breeders' Cup. This is how we see things in our pro-subscribers' bonus commentary.
QURBAAN's trainer Kiaran McLaughlin wins at 25% with shippers. He will be coming hard late and taking a small step down in class, which should help. HI HAPPY has a win and a third in two Gulfstream turf races. RADAR ALERT: BLACKTYPE ran the highest, last race speed figure going wire-to-wire at Belmont. It was also the highest for the distance/surface for this crew; same race should equal he same result. ALMANAAR is a neck away from two wins in two tries on Gulfstream grass."
Harlan's Holiday (G3)
Next up is the Harlan's Holiday for 3 year olds and up at 1 1/16 miles. The Florida Derby winner AUDIBLE will be in the field for his second start after winning the Cherokee Run Stakes during Breeders' Cup weekend. You might also recall that he finished third in this year's Kentucky Derby.
And it looks like it's a race for second place as, on paper, AUDIBLE is the best horse in the field by a wide margin. Normally, we look for ways a 2/5 morning-line can lose. Anything is possible with horses; however, if AUDIBLE runs his average race, it's still better than most other entries best race. Our handicapper makes the point in his commentary.
"AUDIBLE has three, triple-digit speed figures in his last four races. The rest of the field doesn't have any in their last 10 races. VILLAGE KING won his last race with the highest, speed figure recorded for all but Audible. Trainer Todd Pletcher wins at 25% following a win. APOSTLE won his first two starts coming off the bench and then tried grass in his last race. Returning to dirt should be a positive. SIR ANTHONY has won two in a row at Hawthorne, can he bring the form to south Florida?"
A Trio for the Ladies
The race card also features three $100,000 stakes races for fillies and mares with the 1 mile Rampart (G3) on the dirt, the 6 furlong Sugar Swirl on the dirt (G3), and the 1 mile My Charmer (G3T) on the turf.
Have a blessed day and good luck at the races.
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