Morton Fink's reigning Horse of the Year Wise Dan and Phipps Stable's four-time Grade I winner Point of Entry signed on for a heavyweight showdown Saturday when they were among nine entries for the 28th running of the $500,000-added Woodford Reserve Turf Classic (Grade I).
The Woodford Reserve Turf Classic, along with the 27th running of the $300,000-added Humana Distaff (GI), anchors a five stakes undercard leading up to the 139th running of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (GI) on Saturday's 13-race program. First post Saturday is 10:30 a.m. (all times Eastern).
The Woodford Reserve Turf Classic will go as the 10th race on Saturday's program with a 4:44 p.m. post time.
Trained by Charlie LoPresti, Wise Dan took the Maker's 46 Mile (GI) at Keeneland in his 2013 debut on April 12. A winner of his past five starts at a mile on the grass, Wise Dan will be attempting 1 1/8 miles on the turf for the first time.
In four starts at the distance on dirt or an all-weather surface, Wise Dan has won three times including the Clark Handicap (GI) here in 2011 and finished second in last June's Stephen Foster Handicap (GI). Jose Lezcano will have the mount on Wise Dan and break from post position eight.
Point of Entry, who defeated 2011 Kentucky Derby winner and 2013 Dubai World Cup victor Animal Kingdom in the Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap (GI) at 1 1/8 miles in his season debut, will be trying to give trainer Shug McGaughey the first leg of a Woodford Reserve Turf Classic-Kentucky Derby double. McGaughey will send out Orb in the following race, Derby 139.
Point of Entry has won six of his past starts, with the lone setback coming in the Breeders' Cup Turf (GI) last November. John Velazquez has the call on Point of Entry, who will break from post position nine.
A third Grade 1 runner in the field is B.J. Wright's Jeranimo. Trained by Michael Pender, Jeranimo won the Shoemaker Mile (GI) last summer and in his lone start of 2013 won the San Gabriel (GII) at Santa Anita. Jeranimo will break from post position six and be ridden by Rafael Bejarano.
The field for the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic, from the hedge out, is as follows: Middie (Francisco Torres, 120 pounds), Slim Shadey (GB) (Gary Stevens, 122), Optimizer (Joel Rosario, 120), Silver Max (Robby Albarado, 120), Swift Warrior (Javier Castellano, 120), Jeranimo (Bejarano, 122), Bim Bam (Ricardo Santana Jr., 118), Wise Dan (Lezcano, 124) and Point of Entry (Velazquez, 124).
James Spence's Aubby K, three-length winner of the Inside Information (GII) in her 2013 debut, tops a field of nine fillies and mares that will line up for the Humana Distaff at seven furlongs on the main track.
Trained by Ralph Nicks, Aubby K will be ridden by Edgar Prado as she takes on a field that includes Grade I winner Emma's Encore.
Owned by Brenda Mercer and Peter Berglar and trained by Hall of Famer Allen Jerkens, Emma's Encore won the Prioress last August at Saratoga. Third to Aubby K in her most recent start, Emma's Encore will break from post position four and be ridden by Joe Rocco Jr.
The field for the Humana Distaff that will go as the seventh race with a 2:08 p.m. post time, from the rail out, is as follows: Jamaican Smoke (Julien Leparoux, 118 pounds), Rumor (Mike Smith, 120), Same Cross (Rosie Napravnik, 118), Emma's Encore (Rocco Jr., 118), There Is No Limit (Kevin Krigger, 118), Aubby K (Prado, 120), Burban (Jose Lezcano, 118), Byrama (GB) (Joel Rosario, 118) and Holiday Soiree (Javier Castellano, 118).
Two winners of the Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint (GII) at Churchill Downs, Chamberlain Bridge and Regally Ready, head a field of eight for the 19th running of the $125,000-added Twin Spires Turf Sprint Presented by RAM (GIII).
Owned by Carl Moore Management and trained by Bret Calhoun, Chamberlain Bridge won this race in 2009 and came back in the fall of 2010 to win his Breeders' Cup race. Miguel Mena has the mount on Chamberlain Bridge, who will break from post position six.
Vinery Stables' Regally Ready, trained by Steve Asmussen, won the 2011 renewal of the Breeders' Cup Turf Sprint. Seventh in the Shakertown (GIII) at Keeneland in his first start in eight months, Regally Ready will break from post position three and be ridden by Corey Nakatani.
The field for the Twin Spires Turf Sprint that goes as the afternoon's sixth race with a 1:19 post time, from the hedge out, is: Southern Dude (Julien Leparoux, 118 pounds), Havelock (Garrett Gomez, 120), Regally Ready (Nakatani, 118), Ghost Is Clear (Joel Rosario, 118), Cactus Son (Robby Albarado, 118), Chamberlain Bridge (Mena, 118), Berlino Di Tiger (BRZ) (Leandro Goncalves, 118) and Icon Ike (Rosie Napravnik, 120).
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