Yes, yes, we hit the exacta in last week’s featured My Charmer Stakes at Turfway Park, however, kids aren’t going to college on it…soooo let’s use that one as bait & throw it back & catch a bigger one this week.
First...send your Prairie Bayou winner to John@ESPNLouisville.com by 9:00p ET Saturday (December 17) & if you’re the first to email the winner, tasty $25 at The Sports & Social Club is coming your way! We're talkin' U.S. Dollars.
Prairie Bayou stakes is named for winner of the ’93 Jim Beam Stakes at Turfway Park. Prairie Bayou had won two races during Churchill Downs ’92 Fall Meet & then feasted on winter stakes at Aqueduct before coming to Florence for the Beamer. Beat a solid field that included Miner’s Mark (3rd), Awad (4th) & Wild Gale (5th, then 3rd in KY Derby). After his Turfway score, he also captured Keeneland’s Blue Grass Stakes.
Prairie Bayou was favored in all three (3) Triple Crown races in ’93. His late bid came up short against Sea Hero in the Derby and he finished second. He turned the table two weeks later in Baltimore, winning the Preakness. Sadly, he broke down midway through the Belmont Stakes three weeks later & didn’t survive. This was Julie Krone’s Belmont win aboard Colonial Affair, which remains the only Triple Crown win by a female jockey.
James (Lopey) Lopez has won this race four times, including the last two aboard Timeless Fashion. He’ll stay at four with no mount in this year's renewal. Most memorable winner goes to the oh-so-classy gelding Brass Hat won in ’05.
#1 Plutonium 10-1 (Luis Martinez)…six wins in 26 starts. Seems to thrive on wet dirt surfaces. Only one for five at Turfway Park. Certainly has some class, others look better though.
#2 Becky’s Kitten 15-1 (Johnny McKee)…Ken Ramsey claimed his homebred back in $32k claimer last out in September at Woodbine. Only four wins in 28 lifetime starts, but juicy $240k+ bankrolled. Ran 9thin Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf at Santa Anita in ’09. First Turfway start. Doesn’t look like a winner on paper, but Ramsey’s made a living w/horses like this in races like this.
#3 Cryptolight 12-1 (Ramon Vasquez)…makes his 56th lifetime start & impressive 11 wins, 15 seconds & 11 thirds on his resume. Just shy of $600k in lifetime earnings. Shows no recent turf or polyturf form but he’s bred to like the ground up snow tires covering Turfway's track. Three-time stakes winner at Mountainer is a gamer in a bit deep. Absolutely worth a play if you’re getting 10-1 or better.
#4 Matty’s Trail 30-1 (Ben “there done that” Creed)…only two starts in 2011 & last out was last in Ellis Park stakes in July. Only four wins in 28 starts & concedes a lot of conditioning to everyone else. No wins in seven Turfway starts. Can’t see it.
#5 Cool C Note 8-1 (Marty Pedroza)…has won his last two polyturf tries at Keeneland & Arlington Park, neither time favored. Win at Keeneland was in $40k claimer (beating William’s Kitten). Never fired in Churchill dirt try, that’s forgiveable though. Eight wins in 31 starts. He’s got legit shot.
#6 Mad Flatter 7-2 (John Court)…another with solid record with 8 wins in 27 starts & more than $350k in earnings. Ships up from Calder where he won Grade 3 Spend a Buck Stakes in October. Also won nice allowance race in spring at Churchill Downs. Only two polyturf races this year weren’t his best work. There’s better in here for the surface. Gotta look elsewhere ‘til he returns to God’s own dirt.
#7 Stream Cat 20-1 (Tommy Pompell)…eight-year-old former class horse tries to relive glory. Nine wins in 36 starts & more than $750k earned. Won Grade 3 Kentucky Cup Juvenile Stakes at Turfway in ’05 & won Grade 3 Crown Royal American Turf on Derby weekend in ’06. As a four-year-old he was good enough to run 4thin Arlington Million. Been running for $10-20k tags since spring this year though. He’s in good form but clearly has lost a couple steps. Love to see him run well, asking too much to win.
#8 Wealth to Me 5-1 (Greta Kuntzweiler)…no wins in six starts this year & low percentage rider climbs aboard too. Ran 6thin last year’s Prairie Bayou. Style is to come from the clouds. Only shot is for race to fall apart completely.
#9 William’s Kitten 8-1 (Victor Lebron)…good two-year-old campaign saw him win Sunday Silence Stakes on Louisiana Downs turf. Then ran 2nd to Super Saver in ’09 Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes at Churchill Downs. Super Saver would wear the roses six months later. Bill hasn’t won since that Sunday Silence win in September ’09. Not in awful form, just isn’t winning races or getting into his races early enough. Don’t count him out if 10-1+.
#10 Denham 4-1 (Julio Felix)…tasty 16 wins in 34 lifetime starts for very solid Illinois-bred. Regular rider Julio Felix comes down from Hawthorne to ride. Spent last year cleaning up $5k starter allowance races & won at that level first out this year. Seems to get better each start & versatile in running style. Bit concerned about his class level & won’t play if he’s less than 5-1.
#11 Proceed Bee 4-1 (Rodney Prescott)…former diaper dandy won Grand Canyon Stakes on Churchill’s turf as two-year-old in ’08. First start at Turfway was nice win in John Battaglia Stakes along the ’09 Derby trail. Came back w/nice 3rdat 17-1 in Lane’s End Stakes. Three-year-old season also saw him win Grade 3 Hawthorne Derby on grass. Eleven wins in 27 starts & more than $600k bank. Likes the surface, his form is good enough & he wasn’t disgraced at all in this year’s Arlington Million. He’s a gamer & the play.
And the 2011 Prairie Bayou goes to...
#11 Proceed Bee (4-1)
#3 Cryptolight (12-1)
#9 William's Kitten (8-1)
#5 Cool C Note (8-1)
Let's roll w/$12WP on #11 ($24). $1 exacta box 3-5-9-11 ($12). $0.50 tri box 3-5-9-11 ($12). $0.10 super box 3-5-9-11 ($2.40).
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There are no games scheduled for today.