Who Will Shine Beautifully In The Golden Rod?

Golden Rod (Grade 2) (KYO)- $400.000 Purse
CD- For Fillies Two Years Old
One Mile and One Sixteenth on the Dirt
November 26, 2022

This Saturday at CD, we will have some KYO points on the line in the 20th running of the Golden Rod. It’s not a lot, with ten points going to the winner, but you never know in May if we will be in a position where one or two points earned a couple days after Thanksgiving might be what gets a horse into that race. Out of curiosity, I took a look at the 2021 field of the Golden Rod to see how many of them really did run in the KYO. Only one did, and that was the horse that won the race: Main Flirt, for Mb Stables. She went on to finish fifth in the KYO. Only two horses from the 2020 Golden Rod, its 3rd and 4th place finishers (Exultant Gal and Tall and Fast) ran in the KYO. So, while the points are nice, in reality this race is about winning a nice Grade 2 with a $400.000 purse and building up talented two year old fillies for the future. Let’s take a look at the field!

#1- Let It Shine (Rampage Stable, ridden by J Rosario)- After breaking her maiden in her last start, this filly by Roger Rabbit gets her first chance to shine at this level. So far, she has been on the track three times, with the maiden win coming at FL by three lengths. On November 5, her mile work up there was faster than what mostly anyone in the field has put together, so don’t expect her to have any problems stepping up here and think she is one of the top horses in the field.

#2- Berry Chai (Allinthegate, ridden by T Gaffalione)- Won on debut at TUP at the beginning of April, but has not been back to the winner’s circle in any of her four starts that came after. She’s run against tough company often, including the Grade 1 DMR Debutante, where she was beaten by seven lengths. It’s her last start, though, running third in a NY-bred N1X allowance at FL as the reason why I could not pick her against these rivals.

#3- Muddy Buddy (Mb Stables, ridden by R M Hernandez)- She may be a yearling, but unlike other yearlings, she would not hit the track until August. On debut, she ran third at PID. Next up in October, she would break her maiden for $100.000 at KEE, and now she heads here. She has only raced six furlongs so far, but any concern that she cannot handle this distance can be thoroughly squashed by her work on November 10th. While it won’t be an issue in this race, one day I look forward to seeing if she will live up to her name on off tracks.

#4- Tokyo Story (Smokey Stover, ridden by A Cedillo)- This yearling has made many trips to the track this year and will make her ninth start in the Golden Rod. She’s only won once, coming here in May, so that could be a little off-putting. However, she has been running in stakes company for her entire career after the maiden win and is usually in the mix. In October, she was fourth in the Grade 1 Frizette and only beaten by a length. Maybe then, we can call her due for a win. I would expect to see her be a contender here, but I won’t put her on top.

#5- Concordia Queen (Nakamura Stables, ridden by D E Centeno)- Broke her maiden in her second career start, only coming at FP for $10.000. Still, that was enough for the trainer to feel good about entering her in the Grade 3 Pocahontas for her next start which was also her first time running long. In that, she placed sixth. When looking at her comparatively against those she runs against here, it is hard to get excited about her, so I will pass.

#6- Almost Sinning (Arindel, ridden by J R Velazquez)- This Sinissippi Rubicon filly is a perfect two-for-two in her career thus far. She’s a third quarter two year old, and would not debut until late September, but when she did, she came from a bit off the pace to win at FL. Two weeks later, she used the same style to win the $100.000 South Ocean Stakes at WO, for ON-breds. She’ll have about six weeks of rest since then, and I think that’s a perfect amount of time for a horse that previously had two races in short succession. Worked nicely at AQU on the 15th, and can make a name for herself right here.

#7- La Roo (Our Athletes, ridden by L Saez)- Bred in Florida, this filly has raced her entire five race career running in the Sunshine States against state breds. Two of them are in stakes, and they were both great results. She comes off a win in the $400.000 My Dear, and right before that was second, missing by a length in the Susan. Historically, horses move up from those FL-bred stakes to graded company smoothly, and La Roo should be able to do so as well.

#8- Beautifully Grusome (TwinTowersRacing, ridden by Mar Garcia)- Last month, the beautiful side of this filly showed up with a win by a length in the $200.000 Rags To Riches right here. You have to like the way she won that as well, with a smart stalking trip at a mile and a sixteenth. Doesn’t have to run that way, though, as she also did well to come from off the pace in her start before that. She has had a steady and consistent start to her career with a pair of wins in five starts and figures to have a good shot in here.

#9- Cheyenne Warrior (Rock Creek, ridden by E Jaramillo)- In her fifth start, Cheyenne Warrior would break her maiden while running in El Primero Rodeo silks. That would be the last time that trainer would run her, as he would sell her off to Rock Creek for $200.000. On debut for her new trainer, she ran on soft turf and was third, missing by four lengths. The grass is where she has spent most of her career, but a couple of good dirt works gives the trainer confidence to run her here. This is a tough field for her, i don’t think it’s impossible, nothing ever is here, but I wouldn’t put money on her.

Prediction: 8-6-1-3-7  (Picked five since KYO points are paid to fifth)

— NS

Categories: Grade II, STAKES ARTICLES

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