Laurel’s Winter Sprintfest Includes Rematch From Spectacular Bid Stakes

Kenny Had a Notion and Maythehorsebwithu, separated by a neck following a stretch-long duel in the Spectacular Bid last month, will hook up again as the primary challengers in Saturday’s $100,000 Miracle Wood at Laurel Park in Maryland.

The 26th running of the one-mile Miracle Wood for 3-year-olds and the 28th renewal of the $100,000 Wide Country for 3-year-old fillies are among six stakes, two graded, worth $900,000 on the nine-race Winter Sprintfest program.

Serving as co-headliners are the $250,000 Runhappy Barbara Fritchie (G3) for fillies and mares 4 and up and the $250,000 General George (G3) for 4-year-olds and up, both sprinting seven furlongs. Older horses will also go about 1 1/16 miles in the $100,000 John B. Campbell and $100,000 Nellie Morse for females.

Post time for the first of nine races is 12:25 p.m. ET. The Miracle Wood will kick off the stakes action in Race 3 (1:23 p.m.) with the Street Lute carded as Race 6 (2:53 p.m.).

The Miracle Wood will be the third meeting between Kenny Had a Notion and Maythehorsebwithu dating back to the First State Dash last September at Delaware Park, where they ran sixth and second, respectively.

Since then, Louis Ulman and Neil Glasser’s Kenny Had a Notion won the 5 ½-furlong Jamestown over Laurel’s world-class turf course and the six-furlong Maryland Million Nursery on dirt – one of four wins on the program for sire Great Notion – before running sixth in the James F. Lewis III and emerging with a displaced palate that required minor surgery.

Stretched out to seven furlongs for his two most recent starts, Kenny Had a Notion capped his juvenile campaign running second by a neck to James Lewis winner No Cents before his thrilling battle with Maythehorsebwithu in the Spectacular Bid.

“He’s pretty game and he’s going into this well. He worked good the other day so we’ll stretch him out another eighth and see if he can get another eight against these horses,” trainer Dale Capuano said. “I think that he can do it. He sure seems like it. Until he does it you don’t know for sure, but all indications are he could go at least another eighth of a mile, I think. We’ll just have to see how it plays out.”

Kenny Had a Notion broke running in the Spectacular Bid, briefly losing the lead entering the stretch, but surged again along the rail for his third career stakes win. Jorge Ruiz, aboard for all three races, gets the return call from Post 5 in a field of seven.

“He has a lot of speed so I would assume that he’ll probably in front again. We’ll have to see if he can carry his speed that far, really,” Capuano said. “He came out of his race good so he’s ready to go again. We’ll see what happens. We’ll see how he runs and how he comes out of it and then we’ll decide what we’ll do with him after this. But we have options.”

Michael Dubb and Bethlehem Stables’ Maythehorsebwithu is the narrow 2-1 program favorite in the Miracle Wood over Kenny Had a Notion (5-2). Trained by Brittany Russell, the gelded son of 2009 Whitney (G1) winner Bullsbay has been sent to post as the favorite in each of his last three starts.

“He’s great. He’s a really good-training horse and he comes out of every race so far the same way. He touts himself. He trains well, and he hasn’t missed a beat,” Russell said. “You want a horse like him. He has gas, but I think he’ll keep going. I think he’ll be fun moving forward.”

Maythehorsebwithu will also be racing beyond seven furlongs for the first time. He broke his maiden at first asking going 5 ½ furlongs in a maiden claimer last summer at Delaware, and captured a six-furlong optional claiming allowance Dec. 11 in his Laurel debut to punch his return ticket to stakes company.

“He ran really hard last time. I like this horse enough that I can see him jumping up and winning one of these races,” Russell said. “I think he’ll like the mile, but you don’t know until you try. He trains in the morning like he’ll keep going, so I’m excited to see how the mile sets up for him.”

Russell’s husband, jockey Sheldon Russell, gets the riding assignment from Post 4.

Klaravich Stables’ Subsidize ships in from New York where he was a 3 ½-length maiden special weight winner Jan. 7 at Aqueduct in his fourth career start and first at 3. Victor Carrasco, who missed time recently with a minor toe injury, will ride for trainer Chad Brown from outside Post 7.

Kathleen and Robert Verratti’s Silent Service was a front-running 6 ¾-length debut winner Jan. 22 at Laurel for trainer Mike Trombetta, whose first of four career Miracle Wood wins came in 2006 with Sweetnorthernsaint, who would go on to win the Illinois Derby (G3), run seventh as the favorite in the Kentucky Derby (G1) and second in the Preakness (G1). Silent Service is also entered in a 6 ½-furlong optional claiming allowance Friday at Laurel.

Rounding out the field are Tiz Mandate, most recently fourth in the Spectacular Bid; multiple stakes-placed Newyearsblockparty, second last out in the seven-furlong Pasco Jan. 16 at Tampa Bay Downs; and The King Cheek.

Eight Look to Deny Street Lute Sixth Stakes in $100,000 Wide Country
One race before they send out respective stable stars Hello Beautiful and Dontletsweetfoolya against each other in the $250,000 Runhappy Barbara Fritchie (G3), trainers Brittany Russell and Lacey Gaudet will look to upset five-time stakes winner Street Lute in the $100,000 Wide Country.

Team Gaudet and Five Hellions Farm’s Fraudulent Charge came up a nose shy of Street Lute in the seven-furlong Gin Talking Dec. 26 at Laurel, just her second career start and first in a stakes. The Will Take Charge filly was a 6 ¼-length maiden claiming winner on debut Nov. 12, also at Laurel.

“We couldn’t take anything away from her,” Gaudet said. “We kind of didn’t have any other option but to try her in the stake. We were really looking for a third or fourth, a good effort to kind of just get her back over there. We think that she’s a promising filly and I do think that she’s going to want to go further, but winter racing you kind of have to do what Mother Nature lets happen.

“She ran her eyeballs out last time. Obviously, a very, very nice filly beat her, and she has not missed a jump since then,” she added. “[Street Lute] looks like she’ll be the filly to beat again this time, but our filly will be ready and I think she’ll appreciate having some more training and racing under her belt.”

Johan Rosado rides Fraudulent Charge from Post 3 in a field of nine.

Wonder Stables, Robert LaPenta and Madaket Stables’ Little Huntress scratched out of the Ruthless at Aqueduct after it was pushed back a day to Feb. 8 due to weather and Russell opted to stay home with the promising daughter of Frosted, making her stakes debut.

“To be fair we were planning to go to New York and then when they canceled and they brought the races back it gave us the opportunity to enter here, which we were considering anyway. She has a good win over this racetrack. Yeah, it’s a bigger field than it would have been in New York but I just felt better about taking the next step out of her own stall,” Russell said. “She’s put up some nice works in the morning. She appears to have taken a step forward in the morning so I hope that translates to the afternoon.”

Little Huntress was beaten less than a length when second in her Nov. 21 unveiling going six furlongs, then romped to a 14-length front-running maiden special weight triumph sprinting seven furlongs Dec. 27, both over her home track. Russell’s husband, jockey Sheldon Russell, rides from Post 7.

“We always liked her. It’s sometimes deceiving when they win like that because you’re not sure what was behind them,” Brittany Russell said. “With that being said, if there wasn’t much behind her that’s OK because she did it really well. I knew she was going to need a run that first time. We liked her and thought she could get the job done, but she was a big, heavy filly that was kind of hard to get fit and was going to need a race. So, to see her move forward so much from that first run was something we expected.”

Lucky 7 Stables’ Street Lute is the 2-1 program favorite to earn her fifth consecutive victory and sixth stakes overall through seven starts. Her only loss came when second by a nose in the Maryland Million Lassie last fall.

Since then, Jerry Robb-trained Street Lute won the Smart Halo, Maryland Juvenile Filly Championship and Gin Talking to cap her 2-year-old season before launching 2021 with a five-length triumph in the return of the six-furlong Xtra Heat Jan. 16. Xavier Perez will ride for the fifth straight time, from Post 5.

BB Horses’ Miss Leslie was second to Street Lute in the Xtra Heat, snapping a three-race win streak to end her juvenile campaign including the 1 1/16-mile Anne Arundel County by a head over Buckey’s Charm. She was claimed by winter meet-leading trainer Claudio Gonzalez for $25,000 in mid-November.

“She ran into a nice filly the last time, and it was a little short. It was six furlongs, not seven and I think that maybe the seven furlongs is going to be a little better for us. I think she is better going longer. We don’t have any races for 3-year-old fillies going longer so we’ll give it a shot in here,” Gonzalez said. “She’s doing good and she came back good from the last race. Maybe we can be there.”

Buckey’s Charm and Hamilton Smith-trained stablemate Whiskey and Rye, fourth in the Gin Talking and Xtra Heat; Salt Plage, unbeaten in two Parx starts for New York-based trainer Linda Rice; and recent maiden claiming winners My My Girl and Lady Clau complete the field.

The post Laurel’s Winter Sprintfest Includes Rematch From Spectacular Bid Stakes appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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