Red Baron's Barn's multiple Grade II-winner Itsinthepost (FR) is ready to return to the races from a nearly 10-month layoff as the 5-1 co-morning line favorite in Saturday's $250,000 Wise Dan (GII) at Churchill Downs.
Trained by Jeff Mullins, the 7-year-old gelded son of American Post (GB) won the 2018 San Marcos (GII), San Luis Rey (GII) and Charles Whittingham (GII) at Santa Anita. Overall, he's won seven Grade II events. Itsinthepost has been based at Churchill Downs since early May with Mullins' son, and assistant trainer, Jeff Mullins Jr.
“If he can run to the way he's been training, we think he can be ready in his first start off the layoff,” Mullins Jr. said. “The one thing that we're not too sure of is how he will like this distance. It's probably not his best distance and will want to go longer later in the year but it is a good spot for him to start back. I do think he loves this surface at Churchill.”
Jeff Mullins, who has a small string of horses based at Churchill Downs, arrived in Kentucky on Thursday evening. Former Southern California-based rider Tyler Baze has the return call on Itsinthepost in the Wise Dan.
Chief among Itsinthepost's rivals in the Wise Dan is co-favorite Admission Office for trainer Brian Lynch. Admission Office, who was previously conditioned by Chad Brown, closed from nine lengths off the early pace in the Dixie to finish a half-length behind multiple graded stakes winner Catholic Boy. Joel Rosario has the call.
The Wise Dan field from the rail out (with jockey, trainer and morning line odds): Get Western (Julien Leparoux, Charlie LoPresti, 50-1); All Right (Adam Beschizza, John Ortiz, 30-1); First Premio (Brian Hernandez Jr., Mark Casse, 8-1): Hot Springs (Ricardo Santana Jr., Steve Asmussen, 10-1); Holiday Stone (Florent Geroux, Eddie Kenneally, 20-1); Siem Riep (James Graham, Ben Colebrook, 8-1); Itsinthepost (Baze, Mullins, 5-1); Noble Commander (Gabriel Saez, Phil D'Amato, 30-1); Inspector Lynley (Jose Ortiz, Shug McGaughey, 6-1); El Picaro (CHI) (Javier Castellano, Ignacio Correas IV, 12-1); March to the Arch (Tyler Gaffalione, Casse, 6-1); Admission Office (Rosario, Lynch, 5-1); Cullum Road (John Velazquez, Mike Maker, 6-1); and Bourbon Resolution (Chris Landeros, Ian Wilkes, 10-1). Also Eligible: Parlor (Corey Lanerie, Eddie Kenneally, 10-1).
The Wise Dan will go as Race 6 at 8:37 p.m.
Noble Commander, Cullum Road and Bourbon Resolution were re-entered Friday in an allowance/optional claiming race at 1 1/8 miles on turf that will go as Thursday night's eighth race at 7:54 p.m.
The race formerly known as the Firecracker was renamed in 2016 to honor Mort Fink's two-time Horse of the Year who completed a spectacular racing career with a perfect four-race season in 2014. The Charlie LoPresti-trained gelding by Wiseman's Ferry compiled a remarkable lifetime record of 23-2-0 in 31 races with earnings of $7,552,920 from 2010-14.
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