Black Gold Highlights Trio of Saturday’s Turf Stakes — Eddie Johnston and Red Camelia Previews
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Black Gold Highlights Trio of Saturday’s Turf Stakes
Amoss’ Dowagiac Chief looks to make it 2-for-2 against Cox’s Triple Crown nominee Tommy Bee
Who Took the Money’s Form Casts Shadow over Eddie Johnston Field of Eleven
Net a Bear, Fort Polk, Winning Romance–Top 3 from LA Champs Day Distaff Return in Red Camelia
New Orleans, LA (March 3, 2022)—The 64th running of the $75,000 Black Gold Stakes will be the second battle between Dowagiac Chief and Tommy Bee. Michael McLoughlin’s Dowagiac Chief led throughout while being pressed by Robert LaPenta and Madaket Stables’ Tommy Bee, only to pull away and win December’s first-level optional claimer by 5 ½ lengths. Run at a distance of 1 1/16 miles over Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots’ Stall-Wilson turf course, the Black Gold is penciled in as race 6, the centerpiece of a three turf stakes card, with a 3:35 pm CT post time.
Trainer Tom Amoss sent Dowagiac Chief to Sam Houston for January’s Texas Turf Mile. He got the lead, but was tested through quicker fractions and came up empty in the stretch, finishing fourth. Installed as the 8-5 morning line favorite, this son of Cairo Prince will be ridden from post seven with James Graham on board.
Nominated for the Triple Crown, Tommy Bee for trainer Brad Cox made a big step up the race after finishing second to Dowagiac Chief when, at the same level, he won by 7 ½ lengths, albeit in an “off the turf” event. Did he love the fast dirt track or was his first 3-year-old effort only a sign of great things to come? Colby Hernandez will make his third start onboard the 7-2 morning line second choice, breaking from post two.
The remainder of the field with post position, jockey/trainer and morning line odds is as follows: Oak Tree stables’ Holy City (post one, Jareth Loveberry/Scott Gelner, 8-1 ML) won on the turf at first-asking in January, but exits a last place finish against first-level optional claimers last out in a race that was taken off the turf; Glockenburg’s Russian Tank (post three, Jose Vegas/Gennadi Dorochenko, 6-1 ML), one of two uncoupled entires for the owner, broke his maiden as a 2-year-old last November going gate-to-wire at Fair Grounds, but exits a last place finish two weeks back in the Risen Star (G2); Glockenburg’s Magician Stone (post four, Deshawn Parker/Gennadi Dorochenko, 8-1 ML) finished last in the field of eight in the Sugar Bowl and will try the turf at route distance for the first time, having broken his maiden sprinting on the lawn at Arlington Park last August; Greg Tramontin’s Iberville (post five, Reylu Gutierrez/Tom Amoss, 5-1 ML) broke through the maiden ranks last out when dropping in against claimers after three tries in the maiden special weight ranks; Kevin Fontenot’s Silent Tap (post six, Jose Riquelme/Shane Wilson, 6-1 ML) is 2-for-2 around two turns on the Stall-Wilson turf course after winning last out against an optional claiming/starter allowance field.
The 42nd running of the $60,000 Edward J. Johnston Memorial Stakes, run under its current title for the first time, attracted a large field of LA-bred 3-year-olds and up. Everything from first-time-turfers to multiple turf stake winners will compete on the lawn, but Allied Racing’s Who Took the Money stands out from the crowd.
Winning the Louisiana Champions Day Turf in just his second grass start, Bret Calhoun’s 4-year old is two for three on the lawn after beating a salty group of optional claimers last out, including Louisiana Champions Day Classic winner, Grand Luwegee. Flashing an impressive late turn of foot in the Louisiana Champions Day Turf, he rallied from 12 lengths back at the third call to win by 5 ¾ lengths over Treys Midnite Moon, Budro Talking, and Mangelsen – all of who will test him again in the Eddie Johnston. Deshawn Parker keeps the mount on the 4/5 morning line favorite and will begin his voyage from post six.
If anyone could steal it from Who Took the Money, Allen Cassedy’s front-runner Mangelsen seems like a logical choice. After speeding off in the Louisiana Champions Day Turf and tiring to finish fourth, Mangelsen’s form came into question next out when losing by 9 ½ lengths as the favorite in an optional claiming starter allowance, but trainer Ron Faucheux righted the ship with the next out effort, as the gelding led throughout to beat three of his Eddie Johnston foes. Jareth Loveberry will ride Mangelsen for the first time, sending from post seven (9-2 ML).
Multiple turf stakes winner, Hermilo Racing’s Budro Talking will make his first start in Hugo Rodriguez’s barn after being claimed out of the February optional claimer where he finished behind Mangelsen, Get Them Justin, and City Park. With a late-running style, Budro Talking will break from post eight under Mitchell Murrill looking for his 10th lifetime turf win (12-1 ML).
Snake Racing’s 7-year-old Treys Midnite Moon, a 15-time winner with a stakes victory on his resume, looks for his first win in 2022 after finishing on top five times in 2021. Third in his last three starts, including three back to Who Took the Money in the Louisiana Champions Day Turf, trainer “Bunky” Richards calls on James Graham to ride this late-kicker from post five (8-1 ML).
The remainder of the field with post position, jockey/trainer and morning line odds is as follows: Spartan Team investment’s Ballinonabudjet (post one, Colby Hernandez/Michelle Lovell, 15-1 ML) looks to make it three wins in a row while seeking the elusive first turf victory in his sixth attempt; meet-leading owner Brittlyn Stables’ Behemah Star (post two, Reylu Gutierrez/Jose Camejo, 12-1 ML) began his career sprinting and finishing 10th on the grass but has not tried since, though he exits an impressive third-level allowance dirt win at Fair Grounds in January; Autumn Hill Farms’ Get Them Justin (post three, Jose Riquelme/Sturgis Ducoing, 15-1 ML) finished second last out to Mangelsen, improving in his third turf start; Jeanne Dolan’s Changi (post four, Carlos Ulloa/Jeanne Dolan, 30-1 ML) has not won since July 2020 in 19 tries; Norman Stables’ Drewhustle (post nine, Aubrie Green/Lonnie Briley, 20-1 ML) exits a third-place allowance finish at Delta Downs but won the race prior on Fair Grounds’ dirt course; MAT Investments’ City Park (post ten, Pedro Cotto Jr./Eduardo Ramirez, 12-1 ML) is 6 for 7 on the grass, finishing third to Mangelsen and Get Them Justin last out, where he was claimed from Hugo Rodriguez; Glockenburg’s Mr. Universe (post eleven, Jose Vega/Gennadi Dorochenko, 20-1 ML) won against second-level allowance company last out, his second tally in seven turf tries.
Carded as race number 8, the last of three turf stakes races on the day, post time is scheduled for 5:36 pm CT.
All the best LA-bred fillies and mares have tried, but few can beat Maximo Lamarche and Federico Deltoro’s Net a Bear. Winner of 5 of her last 6, 6 of her 11 turf starts, the half-millionaire 6-year-old looks for win number 11 in Saturday’s 46th running of the $60,000 Red Camelia Stakes for 3-year-olds and up going 1 mile over the Stall-Wilson turf course. Seven-time stake winner, including the 2020 Red Camelia, 9-5 morning line favorite Net a Bear’s best run has come on the turf, though she exits a dirt stakes score winning the Premiere Distaff at Delta Downs in February.
The last Time Net a Bear lost on turf was last year’s Red Camelia when she finished second to Oak Tree Stables’ Offspring (post two, Jareth Loveberry/Louie Roussel III, 7-2 ML). With three wins on the lawn, all of those have been at the 1 mile Red Camelia distance. Previously trained by Edward Johnston, Offspring makes her second start for trainer Roussel after finishing third last out behind Net a Bear and Blessed Anna.
Putting on quite the run herself, Steven and Pat Roe’s Fort Polk has won 4 out of her last 6–losing to Net a Bear twice in that stretch. But the Patrick Mouton-trained Fort Polk had her say over Net a Bear and Winning Romance in the Louisiana Champions Day Distaff. That was on the dirt course, and when they faced each other again in February, Net a Bear got the win in the Premiere Distaff at Delta Downs. Jorge Guzman will guide Fort Polk from post five as the morning line 5-2 second-favorite.
After taking the lead at the mile call, Wayne Davis’s Blessed Anna ended up 3rd last out when going 1 1/16 on the Stall-Wilson turf course. Making her third start for trainer Shane Wilson, Blessed Anna looks for a second win on the grass, though finishing in the exacta 7 out of 9 times (post four, James Graham, 5-1 ML).
Allied Racing’s Winning Romance sped to the lead and held for 2nd, beating out Net a Bear in the Louisiana Champions Day Distaff. Making her second career start on turf, “Midas man” Bret Calhoun looks to continue his success transferring dirt horses to the turf course. Calling upon Deshawn Parker to break from the rail, Winning Romance will likely be loose on the lead (9-2).
Whispering Oaks Farm’s Tecate Time looks for her first win on turf and at two turns in the Red Camelia. The three-time winning 4-year-old finished third last out in an allowance at Delta Downs (post three, Mitchell Murrill/Steve Flint, 12-1 ML).
Carded as race number 4, the first of three turf stakes races on the day, post time is scheduled for 2:35 pm CT.
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