By Rick Francis —-
A field of ten are set to roll when the starting gates open for the one-turn Cigar Mile Handicap; let’s take a look at the contenders and pretenders.
Race 10), Grade 1 Cigar Mile Handicap 3yo & up Post Time 4:16 EST
Sharp Azteca (1) fought gamely only to be denied in the BC Dirt Mile. Freud colt has never finished out of the money from eight tries at the mile route, a record that posts five wins, a pair of seconds and a show; he’s at the top of his game now and will be tough to beat.
G M B Racing’s Tom’s Ready (4) appears just that, exits his third Graded Stakes win taking the G3 Bold Ruler in last to first fashion; pace should be just what connections had hoped for.
Multiple Grade 1 winning Practical Joke (8) improved his position in the BC Dirt Mile but was never a threat for the top three; Kentucky Derby starter has shown an ability to bounce back following a loss.
The speedy Mind Your Biscuits (1) makes only his second attempt at the mile, however the one-turn course lays out perfectly for this Posse colt. He’ll need to rate away from .22 opening quarters if he wants to be in the picture late.
Lightly raced Beasley (10) merits consideration here as he was closing fast to the top two in the Bold Ruler, coming up less than a length back; improving sorts are scary in these spots.
The field for the Grade 1 Cigar Mile from rail out:
Mind Your Biscuits (1), Summers/Ortiz, I
Seymourdini (2), Rice/Ortiz, J
Just Call Kenny (3), McBurney/Botce
Tom’s Ready (4), Stewart/Smith
Americanize (5), Callaghan/Bejarano
Sharp Azteca (6), Navarro/Castellano
Vulcan’s Forge (7), Pletcher/Saez
Practical Joke (8), Brown/Rosario
Summer Revolution (9), Rodriquez/Franco
Beasley (10), Henning/Alvarado
Selections: 6, 4, 8, 1, 10