How to Bet the Fountain of Youth

Profile Picture: John Mucciolo

March 1st, 2018

A strong 14-race card will be on tap at Gulfstream Park Saturday, closing with the $400,000 Fountain of Youth S. (G2). This sophomore event is a key race on the Road to the Kentucky Derby, with a total of 85 points on the line. I will take a look at the field and show how I’m playing the race:

#1 HE TAKES CHARGE -- $625,000 son of Tapit broke through with a nice maiden score in his last and rates as an improving sort for conditioner Mark Casse. Gray colt exits a sharp performance over a deep field but will need another forward move to take this field down. I will use the sophomore in some vertical exotics.

#2 FREE DROP BILLY – Dale Romans trainee got off to a nice start this campaign when second in the Holy Bull (G2). Chestnut son of Union Rags had no chance with the impressive Audible but did finish far in front of some accomplished foes and any improvement makes him most dangerous today. Robby Albarado will ride.

#3 PEPPERED – Grey runner-up showed little in lone dirt run to date and has picked an awfully ambitious spot for a three-year-old bow. Reade Baker charge can’t be endorsed right now.

#4 STRIKE POWER – Mark Hennig trainee has wired a pair of fields in succession at this meeting and will surely be a pace player. Son of Speightstown gets a real test against this field and I wouldn’t settle for low odds in a salty spot. Colt didn’t switch leads in his Swale (G3) triumph and with a couple of rivals possessing high speed, the possibility exists for him to be softened up on the front end.

#5 STORM RUNNER – One of three from the Romans barn, son of Get Stormy beat the well-meant Mississippi in a game allowance victory in preparation of this and is very intriguing to me. Chestnut has bagged his last two races on the dirt in strong fashion and could have a lot of value today. I think the move to top pilot Joel Rosario is a positive one, too.

#6 GOOD MAGIC – Champion juvenile makes his 2018 debut is a difficult spot, though anything less than a win would be something of a disappointment. Chad Brown pupil is lightly raced with a very high ceiling and the morning drills leading up to this have been solid. Son of Curlin will be the deserving favorite under Jose Ortiz.

#7 GOTTA GO – Ian Wilkes trainee rallied for second in the Swale but has to get faster in a hurry to challenge for the win in his first run beyond one mile.

#8 MARCONI – Todd Pletcher trainee was a good third in the Withers (G3) and has some long-term potential for sure. Well-bred son of Tapit might not be at his best going 1 1/16 miles, though, over a surface that is not especially kind to one-run closers generally.

#9 MACHISMO – Sensational maiden graduate gets the chance to prove his previous performance was no fluke. Son of More Than Ready looked like a budding star for Anthony Quartaolo but faces a whole different cast from a wide post in his graded debut.

#10 PROMISES FULFILLED – Third of the Romans trio won his first two prior to a good third in the Jockey Club S. (G2) in the fall. Speedy sort has trained very well in advance of today but the widest post is not ideal.


We all look forward to the return of 2017’s juvenile champ and the Fountain of Youth appears to go through Good Magic. He likely receives a very good trip tucked in behind some early pace and first run at the top of the lane. I will key Good Magic first and second in vertical plays.

Free Drop Billy and Storm Runner are my key horses along with the favorite and will be used in everything.


$1 Trifecta: 6 with 2,5 with all = $16

$1 Trifecta: 6 with all with 2,5 = $16

$1 Trifecta: 2,5 with 6 with all = $16

50-cent Superfecta: 6 with 2,5 with 1,2,5,8 with all = $21..