Fountain of Youth Day handicapping blog
Saturday’s $400,000 Fountain of Youth (G2) highlights a 14-race card at Gulfstream Park that includes nine graded stakes. A compelling field of 11 has been entered for the Kentucky Derby prep. FREE Fountain of Youth PPs courtesy of Brisnet.com! Hidden Scroll will jump straight to stakes company and stretch out to two turns following a spectacular win in his January 26 career debut over a sloppy track. A son of 2007 Kentucky Derby and Breeders’ Cup Classic runner-up Hard Spun, the exciting three-year-old registered a field-best 102 BRIS Speed rating for the 14-length decision. He led wire to wire after breaking on top last time but I’m anticipating a switch in tactics today. Well-drawn in post 7 with Joel Rosario, Hidden Scroll should be stalking the action behind the first flight of runners and I expect him to be in a prime position turning for home. Bill Mott isn’t known for producing Kentucky Derby contenders but Hidden Scroll appears poised to put the Hall of Fame trainer in the spotlight. A couple of graded stakes winners from last year, Signalman and Vekoma, will make their first start of the year. I’m willing to fade both runners but won’t be surprised to see either outperform my expectations. Everfast will try to flatter the form of the February 2 Holy Bull (G2) at Gulfstream after a surprising second at 128-1 odds, but he’ll need to keep improving upon a 94 Speed figure. Global Campaign looked like a possible serious player when opening his career with a sharp tally at seven furlongs in early January but netted a disappointing 92 Speed rating for a recent two-turn allowance tally A lively pace looks probable and Bourbon War rates as the possible beneficiary. The Tapit colt displayed a commendable turn of foot drawing away to a 2 ¼-length victory last out, registering 96 Speed and 107 Late Pace numbers in the 1 1/16-mile allowance, and I expect another stout finish today. I’ll use Hidden Scroll and Bourbon War exclusively in multi-race wagers and play a couple of exactas: $40 exacta 7-4 $20 exacta 4-7 Here are some thoughts on the Fountain of Youth undercard: Race 5, Canadian Turf (G3): A different pace scenario today for #1 Siem Riep (10-1 morning line). He returned from 4+ month layoff in a field loaded with speed last time and raced evenly from off the pace after breaking sluggishly. The five-year-old Tapit gelding does his best running on the front end and appears capable of dictating the action here with Albin Jimenez. I like the improving form he displayed on firm turf last season, the only poor showing coming under yielding conditions, and Ben Colebrook (a 12% overall trainer) wins at an 18% clip in the second start off the layoff from a 131-race sample. Wire to wire. Race 7, The Very One (G3): Shug McGaughey has enjoyed a fine meet (9-for-41, 22% win) and #1 Danceland (6-1) can record her first stakes win in this spot. The five-year-old mare broke her maiden on Gulfstream’s turf two years ago but needed some time before discovering her best form. Danceland started to come on last fall, registering BRIS Late Pace ratings of 116-123-117 and a couple of graded stakes placings including a fast-closing third in the Long Island (G3) two back, but she had no chance when experiencing a troubled trip in December’s Via Borghese last out. Her Hall of Fame conditioner has freshened her 63 days (McGaughey wins at a 20% clip off a 46-90 day layoff) and Danceland should receive a ground-saving trip before finishing powerfully with John Velazquez. Race 10: All 10 entrants have racing experience and the 1 1/16-mile maiden special weight for three-year-olds came up surprisingly light on pace. That looks like an advantage for #1 Ownitifyouwantit (6-1), who flashed speed from an inside post last time and wound up a clear second after being overhauled in the stretch by Country House, who came back to finish second in the Risen Star (G2) at Fair Grounds. Ownifyouwantit earned the top last-out BRIS Speed rating (87) and if he makes the early lead as expected with Javier Castellano, the $435,000 son of Midshipman should receive a dream trip in his third career outing. Good luck!