Great Lakes Stakes ($100.000 Purse)
WO- For Four Year Olds and Upward
One Mile and One Sixteenth on the Dirt
June 12, 2021
There’s a new stake on the schedule this year, as the Great Lakes Stakes is set to take place up north at WO, sending older horses a little more than a mile on the main track. It offers a smaller purse, but that has not kept the gate from filling up. A total of ten go to post, and here is an abbreviated look at the race!
#1- Never Met Me (Mb Stables, ridden by D Moran)- This gelding has had a quiet season after running well in 2020. In fact, he was narrowly defeated in the Grade 1 Woodward at SAR last September. He’s been dropped in class since then as he has not been able to follow it up with another strong result. The potential is there with this one.
#2- Take Control (Jokerjoes, ridden by E R Da Silva)- Picked up in private sales for $22.040 in April from Fractious just six weeks after that one sold him for $150.000. It didn’t work out with Harrell Racing, but he did win an optional claimer here for Jokerjoes last month. He only needed to beat two others to do so, though.
#3- Vacuum (Nakamura Stables, ridden by D Fukumoto)- Well, nothing about the past performances on this one suggests he is ready to win this race, but we’ll pin our hopes on this top trainer making a surface and distance change on a new arrival and seeing if it works. We’ve seen that happen before.
#4- Room Temperature I Q (YME Stable, ridden by S Ryan)- The gelding made his debut at the stake level last month at the Grade 3 Cartier Stakes right here, and it did not go well for him. The trainer hopes to have made the needed adjustments and a small class drop will do the trick.
#5- Tango Mango (Nakamura Stables, ridden by R M Hernandez)- There are three going to post for Nakamura in this race, and Tango Mango will hope that a class drop from the Grade 3 PIM Special will result in the return to strong form that he was showing prior to that race.
#6- Tiz Trippi (Gdp Inc. ridden by J Stein)- This one knows how to hit the board, doing so in eight of his ten starts, and three of them were wins. Those have all come in his last four starts, with the last one being a PA-bred optional claimer at PRX last month.
#7- Raleigh In Doubt (Ekli Stable, ridden by P Husbands)- A consistent horse, winning a third of the races (6 of 18) that he has been in, and never seeming to run poorly. He’s even won a graded stake before, coming last August in the La Jolla Handicap, on the grass. Running on the main track has been his thing lately, though. Expect him to be a threat.
#8- Remson (John Henry, ridden by S R Bahen)- Was talked about a lot last year, winning the Grade 3 SUN Derby, allowing him to run in the KYD. Ran in the middle of the field both there, and in the BEL, and has been waiting to win again, which he has not done since the SUN Derby. Recent results are okay, and against this crowd, gives him a good shot. But can he be trusted to put on top?
#9- Hollywood Eclipse (Nakamura Stables, ridden by G Boulanger)- The six year old gelding will make his 35th career start, and he comes here off of his sixth career win, which was an open allowance at GG. Has had some chances in stakes previously, but they are not his best race lines.
#10- Financial Peace (First Class Stable, ridden by L Contreras)- Mostly been a runner on the grass throughout his career, and this will be just the second main track start, which is his thirteenth. Form had become stagnant, so you can see why the trainer is looking to change something up. We’ll see how it goes!