Blofeld seeks return to best form in allowance comeback

Profile Picture: Vance Hanson

January 25th, 2016

Blofeld, a leading juvenile performer in 2014 who was limited to just two starts during his sophomore season, returns to action Wednesday at Gulfstream Park in a $48,000 conditioned allowance going six furlongs.

A well-regarded Triple Crown prospect for Todd Pletcher following a decisive five-length victory in the Nashua (G2) at Aqueduct, itself preceded by a win in the Futurity (G2), Blofeld's classic aspirations fell by the wayside last winter. In his return to the races, in the $100,000 William Walker at Churchill Downs one week before the Kentucky Derby (G1), Blofeld hung in the stretch and finished third, suffering his first career defeat in four starts.

After reportedly contracting a virus and missing an intended start in the Woody Stephens (G2) at Belmont, Blofeld next started in the one-mile Dwyer (G3) on July 4. Losing ground after a half-mile, the gray son of Quality Road wound up fifth, beaten 12 1/4 lengths by the talented Speightser.

Blofeld's most serious challenger, and the 8-5 morning line favorite in Wednesday's race, is Trouble Kid. The four-year-old captured the Gallant Bob (G3) and $150,000 Valley Forge at Parx last fall, and then was demoted from first to second in the $350,000 Frank J. De Francis Memorial Dash at Laurel. Most recently, Trouble Kid finished second by a neck in the $106,000 Claiming Crown Rapid Transit over the Gulfstream strip on December 5.

In addition to Blofeld, Pletcher will saddle another gray in Anchor Down, winless in his past four starts but two-for-two at Gulfstream following early career wins back in 2014.

The field is rounded out by Passion for Action and Puntrooskie, both graded-placed in Canada last season, and Candip, runner-up in the $151,000 Remington Park Sprint Cup three back.

Here's a replay of Blofeld's victory in the 2014 Nashua:

(NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography)