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Barn Notes: Sunday, March 9

IN TODAY'S NOTES: Unbridled Forever Tops Stewart's Stakes Workers; Trainer Tom Amoss Adding Blinkers to Delta Jackpot Winner Rise Up; Jockey John Jacinto Plans March 20 Return to Riding in Races; Tickets Still Available for FG's Hall of Fame Ceremonies Wednesday

Charles Fipke’s Unbridled Forever, who emerged as the 8-1 third choice in the wagering when the Kentucky Oaks Future Wager closed earlier this month, breezed six furlongs Saturday morning in 1:12.40 in preparation for the upcoming Grade II Fair Grounds Oaks on Louisiana Derby Day March 29 at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots.

“I was very pleased with her work yesterday,” said trainer Dallas Stewart during training hours Sunday morning when speaking of his star filly who has been idle since winning Fair Grounds’ $125,000 Silverbulletday Stakes Jan. 18.   That was the Crescent City oval’s first leg of its three-race series for sophomore fillies that concludes with the Fair Grounds Oaks.    “We got just what we wanted.  She worked good, galloped out good and ate up good last night.  She’s right on schedule.”

Stewart trained the 2006 Kentucky Oaks winner Lemons Forever, who subsequently foaled Unbridled Forever in Kentucky on April 23, 2011.  The conditioner, a native of nearby McComb, Mississippi, elected to bypass the Grade III Rachel Alexandra Stakes with Unbridled Forever as the middle leg of Fair Grounds’ series and has saved her for the Fair Grounds Oaks by design. 

“There are plenty of big races later on the season,” Stewart said in the days immediately following her Silverbulletday Stakes victory.

Five of the last nine Fair Grounds Oaks winners have gone on to victory in the Kentucky Oaks a few weeks later in the spring.

Stewart worked West Point Thoroughbreds’ Louisiana Derby candidate Commanding Curve and Charles Fipke’s Grade II New Orleans Handicap candidate Golden Soul in company going three-quarters on Friday to post bullet breezes of 1:13.60 over a track rated good.  Seven-time Fair Grounds jockey champion Robby Albarado was aboard Commanding Curve and is expected to ride him once again in the Louisiana Derby.

A rider for Golden Soul, who finished second behind Stuart Janney’s Orb in last spring’s Kentucky Derby, has not been determined for the upcoming New Orleans Handicap, which will also be contested March 29 as part of the Louisiana Derby Day program.

TRAINER TOM AMOSS ADDING BLINKERS TO DELTA JACKPOT WINNER RISE UP —Paul and Andrena Van Doren’s Grade III Delta Jackpot winner Rise Up worked with blinkers on when he posted a four-furlong move in 48.20 on Mardi Gras morning at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots and 10-time Fair Grounds trainer champion Tom Amoss advised Saturday afternoon that his colt will have blinkers on for his next start, which has yet to be determined.

The 101st running of the $1 million Louisiana Derby March 29 remains a possibility but not necessarily a probability for Rise Up’s next start.

The Amoss-trained Grand Contender, owned by Maggi Moss,, who breezed four furlongs in 48.60 Saturday morning, is being pointed for a next start in the one-mile $75,000 Borgata Stakes at Delta Downs March 15.  The 6-year-old gelding was runner-up in Fair Grounds’ Grade III Mineshaft Handicap on Feb. 22.

Klaravich Stable and William Lawrence’s Sum of the Parts, another Amoss trainee, posted a 48.20 half-mile move Saturday in preparation for his start in Fair Grounds’ $60,000 Colonel Power Stakes this coming Saturday at about 5 ½-furlongs over the Stall-Wilson turf course.

JOCKEY JOHN JACINTO PLANS MARCH 20 RIDING RETURN—Veteran Louisiana-based jockey John Jacinto, seriously injured in a spill last May at Louisiana Downs has been galloping horses in the mornings at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots.

“I’m expecting to be back riding in races on March 20,” Jacinto said Sunday morning during training hours.  “I’m going to start gradually, taking things a little bit at a time.”

TICKETS ARE STILL AVAILABLE FOR FG’S HALL OF FAME CEREMONIES WEDNESDAY—Fans of Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots are reminded that tickets are still available at $25 per person for Fair Grounds’ Hall of Fame ceremonies shortly after the races Wednesday evening.

Brereton Jones’s Proud Spell, one of five of the last nine Grade II Fair Grounds Oaks winners to go on to victory in the Kentucky Derby, will join longtime Fair Grounds trainers Bret Calhoun and Larry Robideaux as the Crescent City oval’s newest inductees at the ceremonies.  Also, the ceremonies will include inductions into Fair Grounds’ Press Box Hall of Fame for track photographer Lou Hodges Jr, videographer Glenn Gremillion and chart-caller A. J. Paretti.