The Jaipur (Grade 1)- $500.000 Purse
BEL- For Three Year Olds and Upward
Six Furlongs on the Turf
June 6, 2020
Many great races are talking place at BEL this Saturday on a super day of racing. There is a little something for everyone, and that includes older turf sprinters. The Grade 1 Jaipur is one of the earlier races on the card, sending a field of eleven six furlongs on the grass. The race runs for the 17th time, and it is just the second time that it has had the Grade 1 classification. Last year’s race, won by The Grandmaster for John Henry, represented the first time that the race was a Grade 1. What is different from last year is the purse, which is increased to $500.000 for the first time! As for The Grandmaster, he continues to run at the graded level, but has become a regular at SA these days. This race gives three year olds a generous six pound weight allowance, but has never been won by a three year old in its history. That said, from 2014 and 2018, only four year olds and up were eligible to participate. Now, let’s take a look at our field!
#1- Gallant Man (TwinTowersRacing, ridden by D E Centeno)- This six year old has had several opportunities to show that he belongs at the stake level, and he has not done much with it. Five stake appearances have seen him run fourth once, sixth twice, and seventh twice. Recent form has not been that great with race lines showing him as a horse that just seems to go along for the ride without doing much. He’s here because the trainer has confidence, but all I can have is doubt. Maybe tactics change.
#2- Korean Bolt (Smokey Stover, ridden by R Bejarano)- Without question, he has been a bolt on the race track, winning five of his seven career starts, including his last four. Most recently, he ran at CD in the Grade 2 TS Turf Sprint and won what was his graded debut, therefore there is no reason to think that he cannot step up and win against this company as well. So far, he has risen to the challenge every time he has been out there. I also like that he has done this with what seems to be different tactical styles, and if that was not enough, he gets that six pound weight allowance as one of the three year olds in here.
#3- Eggs And Bacon (Mb Stables, ridden by M Tunon)- Comes into the race out of the same TS Turf Sprint that was won by Korean Bolt. Eggs And Bacon was second, but was defeated by two lengths. He is still lightly raced, and has won half of his six career starts while never failing to hit the board. Ran third, from post 13, in the BC Juvenile Turf last year. He has been able to perform well both sprinting and running a mile, and will make the most of his six pound allowance here.
#4- Genghis (Arindel, ridden by T Gaffalione)– This colt by Copper Beast returns to the grass for the first time since Halloween. He’s never won on turf, and had been pretty successful on the main track for a while, including winning the Grade 2 San Vicente at SA. That was the last great race of his though, and with some recent disappointing results, the trainer is looking back to the grass for success. Wish I could see a more recent turf work.
#5- Fusaichi Pegasus (Supremebeast, ridden by A Beschizza)- The Chai Lattie colt started his career with wins in his first three races, but none were at this level. His third win saw him be claimed by Supremebeast for $40.000, and he was entered into the graded ranks right away. He has not hit the board since then in two starts, but has not been poor either. Makes his turf debut here, and it is a very tough way to do it!
#6- Salili (Team 7 Illusions, ridden by K J Desormeaux)- The trainer spent big bucks to re-acquire a horse for $1,500.000 that he sold unraced for $150.000. As a part of Nakamura Stables, he was consistent and won a Grade 2 along the way. I’m guessing the trainer has other plans for this son of Cherokee Sunset other then to race him here. Salili has split his career between the dirt and turf, showing plenty of prowess on both surfaces. This would be the signature win of his career (to this point) if he could get it.
#7- Storming (Fractious, ridden by J K Court)- Acquired by the trainer for $225.000 at the end of September last year, and he has yet to show a lot since that sale. He last won in August, taking the Grade 2 National Museum of Racing, but he has not lived up to his sale price so far. Because of that, we see Fractious changing things up, moving out of dirt routes to turf sprints. He’s only raced on the grass four times, but the National Museum of Racing was one of them. Working well heading into the race.
#8- Bashful (Aer Stables, ridden by Mar Garcia)- One of the three year olds in the field that will need to be ready for the finish line to come up when it does. His entire career thus far has been running long on the grass, and that is a career with one with in six starts. Put together an excellent looking at CD to prepare for this race, and would not surprise me to see him be one of the horses at or near the front right out of the starting gate.
#9- Neighborhood Hero (D J C Racing Stables, ridden by R M Hernandez)- The three year old gelding by Local Hero won the first three races of his career, and that included the $100.000 Saplin at MTH. Since then, he has only been having middle of the pack finishes, at best, and that includes some TC prep races. Now, an audible is called, and he will be making his debut on the grass right here. Would have liked to have a more recent turf work, as the one from February doesn’t impress me when stacked up against this crowd.
#10- Dominant Force (John Henry, ridden by J R Velazquez)- Hoping to make John Henry the first trainer to win the Jaipur two years in a row. Dominant Force was picked up in private sales last August for $50.000 just was his career was getting going. He would run in a couple of ungraded stakes right away, but was not quite ready for them yet. After a couple of allowance wins, he returned to the stake level and even went graded for the first time for the Grade 2 Shaker, placing second in a close photo. An effort like that again will make him one of the top contenders here in this race.
#11- Gordon Drive (Estero Farms, ridden by Mario Gutierrez)- On the outside, this colt will be looking to change his recent fortunes that have seen place in the double digits in this last two races. To do this, he is going to be leaving the routes behind and go back to sprinting, something that he did do a few times last year as a two year old. The trainer hopes that will mark a change from the last two races because the post draws sure haven’t for him.