Simpson Stakes (Grade 2)- $600.000 Purse
KD- For Three Year Olds
Six and a Half Furlongs on the Turf
September 10, 2022
The starting gate will be full for one of the newer graded stakes on the circuit: The Simpson Stakes at KD. It is part of a great weekend of race at this track, providing some terrific opportunities for turf horses to show their skills and potentially send them to the BC in a couple months. While the KD Turf Sprint offers a higher purse and allows three year olds to participate as well, the Simpson Stakes is for those horses who might not be ready to take on older horses yet, or they simply have trainers who have such a strong arsenal that they need to split up their weapons. It’s the fourth time that the race has been run, and last year Mb Stables took home the trophy, thanks to Tormented. It was part of a 1-2-3 finish for Mb Stables that saw Shakespearean run second and Leas Chance place third. Tormented did run in the BC Turf Sprint, but his career has not taken off and is presently available in the auction. The gate will be full for this race, let’s meet them!
#1- Training Wheels (Gdp Inc., ridden by A Cedillo)- It took this one a while to break his maiden, after having a handful of opportunities to do so. Once those training wheels came off, the Safecracker gelding has not done anything other than win, and mostly recently that was in the Grade 3 Quick Call at SAR. His recent works have been on the dirt, making me wonder if this was the initial targeted race after that, but now that he is here, he should be a factor.
#2- Show Me How To Live (Mo Mentum Farm, ridden by P Lopez)- This horse needed to be shown the grass, as after a less than spectacular start to his career on the main track, he made his turf debut at FE in June. On a rain-soaked day, he ran second, although this field is not going to be intimidated by that result or the wins that came after. What those races have done is earn him a chance to run against the company, though it remains to be seen what kind of impact he can have.
#3- Mako (Arindel, ridden by J C Ferrer)- After his debut, all of Mako’s races have been on the grass and he has had some good results, including a win in the $100.000 Singletary Stakes at SA in April. That brought him to the graded level, and he has had a tough time adjusting to this level. Was last seen against CA-breds in an optional claimer that he won, so he is going to get another shot against top company here. He’s still young enough to have made the progress needed but others in here appear more interesting.
#4- Golden Authority (Asgar, ridden by Ru Silvera)- This one has spent over half of his career on the CA-bred circuit, including a handful of stakes. None of them resulted in a victory, however. He’ll now return to the grass, a surface that he has not run on since February and neither of his turf starts a win. Golden Authority is typically a horse that runs competitively, but in a field of this caliber, it is tough to get excited about him.
#5- Whoa Bo (Maxmillion Farm, ridden by S X Bridgmohan)- Maxmillion has brought this horse along patiently, and he is being rewarded for that now. After Whoa Bo was gelded in December, he ran off a three race winning streak, which culminated in capturing the $200.000 Walker at CD in early May. He has had two strong ungraded performances since then, including a 99 SRF earned in the $150.000 Mahony at SAR, where he was second. This is his graded debut, but I really like the way he is trending, and that he has been a living in turf sprints. Should be one of the top choices in here.
#6- Commander Chai (Maxmillion Farm, ridden by R M Hernandez)- The strong horses saddled by Maxmillion Farm continue as Commander Chai looks to extend his winning streak to four. It’s a run that began modestly in an optional claimer before he would go to PIM and win the Murphy Stakes. After a couple months of rest, he went to SAR, and would win the National Museum of Racing by three lengths. If there is a concern about him to be had, it would be distance, since those are somewhat longer races, but I think that’s just looking for a problem. He’ll be fine.
#7- Inspector Legrasse (Night Rider Stables, ridden by F Geroux)- Claimed for $25.000, and would be gelded before he was able to sleep that night. Inspector Legrasse got the message that his new trainer means business and won his next two, highlighted by the $75.000 Texas Glitter. He hasn’t been that good since then, however, and his last place effort in the Mahony is a big red flag when we have others here that ran much better in that one.
#8- Electile Dysfunction (TwinTowersRacing, ridden by E Jaramillo)- Broke his maiden against CA-breds in April, and backed that up very well in the $127.000 allowance that he was entered in, with another victory. He would be okay in a couple races after that, including being moved into the graded ranks, but the real point of concern for him is his shifting gears to the turf, where he has never run. His lone recent turf work was sharp, so he could warrant some consideration.
#9- Storming Home (Mb Stables, ridden by M Franco)- We’ve talked about the Mahony a few times, and if you were wondering who won that $150.000 race, here he is. For Storming Home, it was his first turf sprint in ten months, a race that he also ended up winning. Mb Stables understandably moved him to the main track for a while and kept him there as his result were good and consistent. However, it may be that this is the type of condition where he is at his best.
#10- Pride In The Ride (Asgar, ridden by E Maldonado)- Last year, Pride In The Ride took part in the BC Juvenile Turf Sprint, and ended up finishing third. Entering his three year old season, he continued the string of strong results with a three race winning streak, culminating in the $200.000 Palisades Turf Sprint. After struggling in the TS Turf Sprint, he bounced back well by winning the Grade 2 PEN Mile. Didn’t hit the board in his last two, but wasn’t bad in either.
#11- Norski Raider (Mb Stables, ridden by L Saez)- He ran against his stablemate in the Mahony last place, but could only manage a fifth place result. I like his race before that a lot better, where he was third in the Grade 3 Quick Call, but if you put those two races side by side and look at them, there is not a lot of difference in Norski Raider’s race. Might be a horse that you can trust a little more than his stablemate, though I would still pick Storming Home over him.
#12- Hollywood Rivalry (Acber Farms, ridden by J R Velazquez)- Nakamura Stables may have let one get away, as he sold this one off for just $5.000 in April. The happy recipient was Acber Farms, who changed up his adds and moved him to turf sprints and has ended up with a pair of victories in the two starts they have had together. They were good wins, too, coming in an $101.200 allowance at WO and then a $107.000 optional claimer at SAR. Now, Hollywood Rivalry is going to make the biggest start of his career but even if he doesn’t win this time, this looks like a horse to keep an eye as he is only five starts old.
#13- Creepy Rocky Party (Mb Stables, ridden by Mario Gutierrez)- It looks like we’re back to this trainer getting outside post draws in the races I ended up with. Creepy Rocky Party also ran in the Mahony in his last start, so as far as the trainer is concerned, nothing is different about the races. This gelding was third in the race, a half length behind his stablemate. Prior to the Mahony, he had won four of five, including the Quick Call which was in a dead heat with Training Wheels. It’s a horse that likes to get on the lead, but perhaps with the post, the trainer has an adjustment in mind.
#14- Sleepy Sunday (Rampage Stable, ridden by I Ortiz Jr)- For this gelding, the Quick Call was his stake debut, but he did not factor in the finish. Over his career, he has been a bit hit and miss, with his best stretch coming in allowances or optional claimers between January and April. He’ll need to be better than the Quick Call, but it could be a case of the additional furlong of this race being very beneficial here. You could also say he was impacted by his outside post there, but obviously that doesn’t get better here.