Dancing Officer Looks To Defend WV Breeders Crown

The WV Breeders Classic- $350.000 Purse
CT- For Three Year Olds and Upward Foaled in WV
One Mile and One Eighth on the Dirt
October 14, 2017

This Saturday, the bullring at CT will get a lot of attention as it features several stakes races for those who call West Virginia the place that they belong. Unfortunately, our card will be shorter then its real counterpart given a few races did not fill, but the main race of the day, the WV Breeders Classic, did manage five entries. That’s a good thing, given the race sees a purse reduction this year from $500.000, where it had been since race inception in 2007. This will be the tenth time that the race has been run. Mb Stables has been the most successful in this stake, winning three of the last four editions. However, he will not have a runner in this field, so let’s focus on the five that do with our run through the field!

#1- Blue Eight (Blushing Meadows, ridden by J R Velazquez)- On the rail, this gelding gets set to make sixth start for Blushing Meadows, and this is a great opportunity for them to pick up their first win together. If anything, this gelding that began the year running in the Pegasus World Cup just needs a kickstart in the right direction. When it looked like things were slowing down for him, he cut his distance just a bit and looked pretty good in the Grade 2 Kelso, putting up a 100 SRF. It’s important for him to follow that up well here, and don’t forget that he ran second in this very race last year.

#2- Rebel Force (John Henry, ridden by D E Centeno)- Purchased by John Henry about a month ago via private sales for $75.000 from Jader Stable, and this will be their first race together. He was seen this year in the KYD, though not many people may have noticed that he finished that race, he was at least part of it. After that disappointment, he was dropped into optional claimers for a couple starts, picked up a pair of seconds, then successfully returned to graded competition by winning the Grade 3 Seagram north of the border at WO. I’m leaning his way for this race.

#3- Gentile Il Buono (Sc Lanciano, ridden by K J Desormeaux)- Desormeaux heads to CT for the chance to ride this El Gran Broomstick colt one more time, just like he did in the Pacific Classic (Grade 1) a couple months ago. Unfortunately for the trainer, that race did not go all that well. He had run in several big races prior to that this year, which even includes the CT Classic (Grade 2) here in April. Victories, have not been there for him, though, and it has been over a year since his last winners circle visit. After the Pacific Classic, he was dropped into an open allowance at MTH, and was the runner up.

#4- Dancing Officer (Hambletonian Stable, ridden by A Bocachica)- He’s become well known to the fans here at CT with eight starts here during 2017, something that we don’t see enough of in our game, so kudos on that, alone. However, his 2016 appearance here is what got him started, when he won the 2016 edition, for prior trainer Mb Stables. Hambletonian purchased him in private sales for $90.000, and kept him here. He’s had a good, though maybe not great season, but another win here would be a solid exclamation point to his career at CT. Has a great shot, and comes in on good form, so that’s a plus.

#5- Moccasin Skin (Defoe, ridden by F Pennington)- He was purchased in private sales just a couple weeks ago from Australia Wide for $100.000, so the trainer will give him a test in their first race together. He’s won four times, three of which were at PM. Australia Wide picked up his competition level quite a bit, and got a couple decent starts, but then Moccasin Skin was solidly beaten in the WV Derby in August. Works look good heading into the race, but this is going to be a tough task.

Prediction: 2-1-4-3

— NS

Categories: NG Stakes, STAKES ARTICLES

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