Suwannee River: A New Year Tune Up for Several

The Suwannee River (Grade 3)- $150.000 Purse
GP- For Fillies and Mares Four Years Old and Upward
One Mile and One Eighth on the Turf
February 10, 2018

A small Grade 3 takes place at GP this Saturday that allows older female turf starts to show their stuff, and it has attracted a field of seven (initially eight). This race was once owned by Barcelona Farms, who won the event four consecutive years (a very rare feat in HRP) from 2009-2012, including with Valibert twice. Their streak only ended due to a lack of entries in it, as they have not returned to the race since 2012, and will not be in this one either. Whether any new Suwannee dynasties begin remains to be seen, but let us see what happens in this race. Here is the field!

#1- Hide N Seek Pup (Gdp Inc, ridden by R Bejarano)- A consistent horse who has been in the money in seven of her nine starts, and that includes four wins. The stakes have not always been high for her, and only recently did she make her stake debut. She has now run two small ungraded events, and finished second in both. Seems to like to be on the lead early, although did not race with that tactic in a recent 12-furlong outing.

#2- In Z Balance (Diablo Diablo, ridden by J L Ortiz)- This could just a freshener for In Z Balance, as it is her first race since running the BC Fillies and Mares Turf last November. She also needs a turn around of fortune, since 2017 did not finish as well as it had been for the majority of the year. This is a great spot for her to get that jolt of success back in her form, and regardless of whether or not she wins, she certainly will be a factor here.

#3- Royal Times (Maxmillion Farm, ridden by J Lezcano)- Purchased recently in private sales for $20.000 from LionKing Stables, who did a good job bringing her career forward. In two starts with Maxmillion, who has a great feel for talent on the grass, she has not found the winners circle, but did run second in an ungraded stake at AQU. While she’s been good in overnights, stake results show a different story, so far.

#4- Born From Mrs Z (Mb Stables, ridden by I Ortiz Jr)- The trainer seems to have a great shot to pick up his first win in this stake. Since being purchased for $65.000 in private sales in, Born From Mrs Z has consistently been able to hit the board in four stake attempts, two of which were Grade 1’s. This is a step down from the likes of the American Oaks, and she should be a threat in this field, although maybe there’s more coming out of that race.

#5- Nothing Given (Our Athletes, ridden by J R Leparoux)- Like Born From Mrs Z, Nothing Given comes out of the Grade 1 American Oaks, and there was pretty much nothing between them in that race. Nothing Given has a little more experience running at the graded level, and winning at it, as she scored a win in the Grade 1 DMR Oaks in August, then followed that up with finishing 2nd as she missed the headbob at the wire in the Grade 1 Rodeo Drive. Her last two starts have not been up to that standard, but she is poised for a bounce back here.

#6- Geeks In Spain (Nakamura Stables, ridden by L Saez)- A winner of three race in fourteen tries, Geeks In Spain takes on graded stakes company for the first time. It’s an opportunity she has earned with consistent success in overnights. That form led to her attempting the $75.000 Blushing KD, where she’d both win and score her highest SRF to date. She should have a good shot at this as well, as long as that form continues.

#7- Good Line- Scratched

#8- Shoot The Moon (TwinTowersRacing, ridden by J Rosario)- The five year old mare will make the 21st start of her career. She was at her best in the spring of 2017, where she won twice in stakes, winning the $75.000 Daisy Devine at FG, then the Grade 2 CD Distaff Turf Mile on KYO day, on soft turf. Since that win, she has struggled a little bit. Two races after that win, lasix was added and has never been removed. It’s been removed (as of press time) for this race.

Prediction: 5-4-2-8

— NS

Categories: Grade III, STAKES ARTICLES

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