Transylvania Stakes Form Looks to Have Some Bite to It

Transylvania Stakes – Grade III
KEE Race #1 1 1/16m Turf Graded Stake
Purse $400.000 For Three Year Olds.

1    The Tonight Show          Rock Creek       Davis D

After a close second in the grade one Summer and then a great third in the Juvenile Turf it looked like this one was going to be one of the turf stars of the year. But like most trainers the lure of the KYD was too much and Rock Creek sent this one to the Lecomt to have a go on dirt. Dirt horses tend to be able to run on turf at HRP but turf horses often struggle on dirt and that is exactly what happened on the day as he ran a stinker to be tailed off last. Back to the turf and The palm beach stakes last time out and he was back to his brilliant best for a one length win in a fast mile time. I think this is potentially a BC Turf mile horse so he fits in this field nicely and with the ace draw has a real winning chance.

2     Double Sided           Fractious          Bridgmohan S X

He was recently bought from Jive Inc and it was interesting to see where the old trainer was going with him and that direction has been bought into by his new owner. His good two year old dirt form was flailing a little so he went to the turf last time out for the first time in his career and only just failed to pull off a win in a GG Optional claimer. His best dirt form makes him a contender and as i said just now, dirt horses can be equally good on turf so that gives him a realistic chance from the best draw.

3      Creepy Risk           Fractious            Jaramillo E

A really interesting entry being unbeaten so far in his career with a two from two record. His maiden win was nice but it was in running 1.33 flat to win the Pasadena Stakes that he really caught the eye. Making all he was never really challenged and you get the feeling that this is an above average turfer with a real future. If there is a dark horse in the race then it is this one.

4      The Godfather       Smokey Stover          Gutierrez Mario

Whereas i mentioned The Tonight Show as a potential turf star we have to talk about this one as a potential superstar because he beat him in both the summer and the BC Juvenile Turf to make him the leading juvenile turf horse of last year. Just as i said earlier when you have a good two year old be it a sprinter or a turfer you can’t help but have a crack at the KYD qualifiers and this one tried and failed almost as spectacularly as The Tonight Show. Sandwiched in between his dirt failures is a turf stakes win so we know he still has it on his favored grass and a recent work suggests he is ready to get back to what he is best at.

5     Keenness       Our Athletes          Velazquez J R

The winner of The Bourbon and sixth in the Bc Juvenile Turf this is just the type that would look a good thing in a grade three race but this is such a hot race that even with that form he is only probably about fourth best. Another turfer that tried his luck on the dirt and failed he is working well and certainly deserves to be in what looks like one of the best three year old turf races of the year so far.

6        Norski Raider          Mb Stables        Ferrer J C

So many great horses already spoken about and only now do we get to the Mb entry! Lightly raced and fairly consistent his form doesn’t stack up to some of these but his works are just as good so it is impossible to write him off. Hard to make a solid case to win but the trainer has magic fingers and you just never know what will turn up these days.

7    Cascade King         Nakamura Stables        Carrasco V R

This is a classic case of the difference between horses transitioning between dirt and turf and turf and dirt. Whist we have already talked about several turfers that failed on the dirt this one is waiting to make his debut on the surface today and certainly this way round has brought about many upset results and drastic improvement. Well beaten on dirt recently he then went and worked a sub 1.35 on turf so is switched into this race and may just be the fly in the ointment.

8       Twenty Twenty     Threshold            Bravo J

He looked like a real useful turfer when taking the KD Juvenile and the Cup and Saucer but has since hit a brick wall with both draws and form since. Drawn wide seems to be the nail in the coffin for any revival of form and i guess his trainer will finally get the message after this race.

9    Cadillac Jack         Team 7 Illusions       Silvera Ru

It happens so often that the outsiders and thrown into the wide gates almost like a sacrifice to the race engine and the two widest drawn today look the least likely to win. This one only just broke his maiden but he did it in good style over this trip cruising home by a never challenged three lengths. Could his recent geld have unlocked the magic code and he will now become a superstar? Well we will only know after this race but he is certainly working better than a one race winner.


This is a real nice race with some quality turfers in it but once again we find ourselves not trying to work out form but to work out which hack will work. Will it be the gelding hack, the first race on turf hack or indeed the instructions/draw hack. Maybe we will just have a great race where the best horse will win, that would be a nice change! Te Godfather will be a popular choice for winner today and may well do just that but i rather like the chances of Creepy Risk here who may just go off at attractive odds in a very competitive race.

Categories: Grade III, STAKES ARTICLES

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