FG Stakes (Grade 3)- $150.000 Purse
FG- One Mile and One Eighth on the Turf
For Four Year Olds and Upward
February 15, 2020
The fifteenth running of the Grade 3 FG Stakes will take place on Saturday at the track that it is named for. It is a smaller event for successful older turf horses, and the field of ten mostly consists of horses who have had modest success over their careers, some more then others. The most successful trainer in the history of the race, is, could it actually be? La Rosa Stables? Of course, I have to add that into the article, but he is the only trainer to have won the race more then once, doing so in back to back years in 2013 and 2014. He will not have an entry in this field, however, but let’s meet the ones who do!
#1- Going Gone (John Henry, ridden by T Gaffalione)- This is the horse with the best resume in the field, having amassed over $1,100.000 in career earnings. That is more then double what the next most prolific horse in this field is. Going Gone begins his six year old season here, and it comes after his best year to date as he won the Grade 1 Shoemaker Mile last year. He’s never tailed off from that, and will pose formidable opposition to his rivals here. He’s the one to beat, and with this draw, he has no excuses.
#2- Roger Rabbit (Rampage Stable, ridden by I Ortiz Jr)- After doing decently at lower levels on the main track, Roger Rabbit got a big career boost when he was moved the grass. Can he really be a stake horse, though? The trainer gave him one chance at it, in the Grade 3 Smith Handicap, and he did not run well, but maybe 11 furlongs wasn’t his thing. Drop down to win an allowance on soft turf, and he actually has done quite well on off tracks, but that won’t apply here.
#3- Multiple Shadows (Our Athletes, ridden by M Tunon)- Once he finally figured out to win, he enjoyed it so much, he rolled off a three race winning streak that culminated by winning a $75.000 ungraded stake at MTH. Since that race, he has not hit the board in his next three, but all three were competitive runs, regardless, in graded stakes, and he may be able to build off of that here. Has not been publicly worked in 2020 yet, but his last such work looked sharp.
#4- Na Dene (Team 7 Illusions, ridden by S X Bridgmohan)- Returns to the graded ranks for the second time, and first time since last June. He has spent much of his career running against PA-breds, and that is where all but one of his wins have come. Ran fairly well at PRX before coming here, and makes his four year old debut in this race. Otherwise, when I look at this horse, I see a respectable one that could have his day, but nothing really stands out about him.
#5- Tourniquet (Mo Mentum Farm, ridden by J Lermyte)- The jockey has been struggling so far this meet, and even had a trainer call him out in the forum not too long ago. That wasn’t Mo Mentum Farm, and Lermyte will have a great mount here. The gelding made a name for himself in the $400.000 Birdstone at WO, and even ran third in the Pattison. It was a great stretch that he had over the summer, but he is still showing speed, and this is a very good spot for him.
#6- B N Broadway (Nolespan Racing, ridden by L Saez)- Makes the 22nd start of his career, and recently has been passed around in claiming races. Recently, there is really nothing to get excited about in terms of his past performances. His one graded attempt saw him finish well behind the leaders. He’s shown speed, and did look very good in the claimer he won in his last start, but he will need to show that at this level, too.
#7- Freaky Onez (Maxmillion Farm, ridden by A Beschizza)- Anything this trainer sends out to the track on the grass must be respected, but Freaky Onez has been a little inconsistent during his career. His claim to fame right now is a win in the Grade 3 VA Derby, but he was not able to follow that up, and likewise was dropped a bit. He did recover nicely in his last start, the Grade 3 San Gabriel, where he finished 3rd.
#8- So Lonely (Diablo Diablo, ridden by F Geroux)- This horse has an excellent track record of hitting the board in his fourteen race career, doing so ten times, and nine of them were a top two. The vast majority of that is in overnights, and his one graded attempt prior to this did not go well. However, he is getting another chance because of his win in the $200.000 Unusual Heat Turf Classic, for CA-breds, at SA, which is the only other stake he has run in. If he tries to duplicate that here, look for him to go out to be at or near the lead early.
#9- Running Bien (Chili King Stables, ridden by C J Lanerie)- While his last three starts have not necessarily been poor (only one of them was), Running Bien still has not really justified the confidence that his trainer has in him since purchasing him in private sales. His primary success comes against beating PA-breds in smaller optional claimers. Nothing wrong with that, and this race can really go a long way in determining if he has a long-term future at this level.
#10- Cheapsnake (Nakamura Stables, ridden by B J Hernandez Jr)- The Snakie gelding makes his 24th start here in hopes that his best days are not behind him. After being successful through his three year old season, he had an inconsistent year last year, and did not win any of the stakes that he was entered in. On the flip side, he always seem to be near the front, so maybe he just needs a little more luck. He didn’t get it in the post draw, though.