The Fleet Sprint Handicap (Grade 3)- $500.000 Purse
OP- For Four Year Olds and Upward
Six Furlongs on the Dirt
April 10, 2021
As a part of the undercard at OP for the AR Derby, we will be able to enjoy the 16th running of the Fleet Sprint Handicap, a race that offers a $500.000 purse to be divided amongst its top four finishers. The purse reached that level for the first time last year. That race was won by Harleys Hope, and TwinTowersRacing but it would be the last time that the gelding won a race. Back in the day, Ljosalfar picked up consecutive wins in both 2007 and 2008, and the winningest trainer in the history of the race is Night Rider Stables, who won in 2014, 2015, and 2017. Weights for this race do range from 117 to 121, though most are between 117 and 119. Let’s take a look at those that make up this full field!
#1- Starship Sweeper (TwinTowersRacing, ridden by T Gaffalione)- The trainer pins his hopes on winning this race two years in a row on a maiden that has made 18 starts. Now, don’t be so quick to move on to the next horse, because he has hit the board twelve times. He’s been quite close lately too. Ok, on to the next horse now.
#2- Dont Worry Be Jolly (Mb Stables, ridden by T J Pereira)- A new arrival to the Mb Stables’ arsenal, this gelding made his debut with the trainer just two weeks ago in a $75.000 claimer. His impressive win there inspired the trainer to see what the horse can do at this level. As long as he is okay with the quick turnaround, he could be one to watch but he absolutely must run like he did at SA.
#3- Korean Boyband (Night Rider Stables, ridden by E Jaramillo)- Pick up from Team 7 Illusions for a $35.000 claiming tag as the former trainer dropped him hard into that race out of the stake level. He would debut in February, wearing blinkers, in an allowance for Night Rider, and got the victory, and has been resting since then. Now he gets a chance to show that he can get it done at this level once again.
#4- Cucamonga (Tiratzo, ridden by J R Velazquez)- Ran in the BC Sprint last year, but would only end up beating one horse. Since then, he has only raced one time (allegedly), though he didn’t seem to show up in a tenth place finish in the San Carlos. He needs to show up now, and if you have to wonder about him long term if he struggles again.
#5- Devilish Details (Mb Stables, ridden by D Davis)- The veteran five year old gelding will make the 26th start of his career, but very few of those have come sprinting. He has mainly been known as a miler, and has made most of his starts on the grass as well. Ran last month with similar conditions in the Grade 3 Fool Handicap, and hopes to carry momentum off of that runner up performance.
#6- Concan (LionKing Stables, ridden by S X Bridgmohan)- Recently picked up by LionKing, from Maxmillion, back in early February, and has made two starts in overnights since then. He’s won once, and overall has won three of his last four. A good showing at FG excited LionKing enough to give Concan his stake debut here.
#7- Fusaichi Pegasus (Patterson Stables, ridden by A Cedillo)- This one has a big name to live up to, and has been hit and miss over his career with five wins in twelve starts. Has one stake win in his past, the $125.000 Perryville back in November. Seems to be progressing well with Patterson. It is his first race since the end of January.
#8- Its A Laugher (Maxmillion Farm, ridden by Ru Fuentes)- You have to go all the way back to the beginning of November for the last time Its A Laugher was able to get to the winners circle. He tried this race last year, and was seventh, and that ended up being the last time we’ve seen him in the graded ranks. Comes off a promising second place finish in the $100.000 Shackleton.
#9- Doom (Rampage Stable, ridden by J Rosario)- This four year old gelding has made one start this year so far, and that was a win in the $100.000 Pelican at TAM in mid-January. He has not had many chances at the graded ranks lately, and part of that may be because he was having no luck in them for a while. He seems to have the ability to step up at any time, and we’re just waiting for it to finally happen.
#10- Seven Towers (Threshold, ridden by D Moran)- It’s a big step up for this gelding, especially when you think about where he was over the summer of last year. In his last start, which is also the only time he has run this year, Threshold put blinkers on him and he ended up winning a starter allowance about two months ago.
#11- When Your Strange (Maxmillion Farm, ridden by Ru Gonzalez)- We know Maxmillion knows how to get them to run well on the grass, but he also knows when to take them off of it. This gelding was claimed for $30.000, and afterwards moved to the main track, and the results have been promising. In his last, he ran third in the Folsom Handicap, one spot behind Devilish Details. I like his chances here.
#12- Geronimo (Nakamura Stables, ridden by V R Carrasco)- We will have the top three runners from the Folsom Handicap here in this race, as Geronimo was the winner of that race. Now, he will have to show that he can beat Devilish Details and When Your Strange while carrying more weight, as he is the high weight in the field, at 121 pounds. He’s a little inconsistent, so I have concerns about him being able to do so.