Mubtaahij returns for McLaughlin in Suburban; Economic Model enters Dwyer on upswing
The 4-year-old colt hasn’t visited the winner’s circle since romping in the U.A.E. Derby (G2) 15 months ago, but Mubtaahij merits serious respect following his runner-up effort to California Chrome in the March 26 Dubai World Cup (G1). Irad Ortiz Jr. will take the reins and Mubtaahij picks up first-time Lasix.
Grade 1 winner Effinex will make a title defense in the 1 ¼-mile event. A commendable one-length scorer over Melatonin in the Oaklawn H. (G2) two starts back, the 5-year-old delivered a clunker when sixth as the 3-5 choice in the June 18 Stephen Foster (G1) most recently. The James Jerkens trainee can be inconsistent but is capable with his best. Mike Smith rides.
Jerkens is also responsible for Shaman Ghost, a smart 4 ¼-length winner of the June 11 Brooklyn (G2). Joel Rosario retains the mount on the 2015 Queen’s Plate hero. Grade 1 victor Noble Bird will try to rebound from a sixth in the Met Mile (G1) and Grade 3 winner Eagle, second in the Stephen Foster, adds further depth to the eight-horse field.
Economic Model heads a cast of eight 3-year-olds in the $500,000 Dwyer. Conditioned by Chad Brown, the Flatter colt will cut back to a mile after closing strongly to take the June 11 Easy Goer going away and seeks his third straight win at the Belmont meet with Irad Ortiz.
Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) runner-up Swipe, second to Nyquist in four straight stakes last year, will try to get back on track following a rallying third against elders in a June 26 Belmont allowance. Kent Desormeaux pilots the Birdstone colt for his brother Keith. Fish Trappe Road brings improving form off a Woody Stephens (G2) runner-up performance and Laoban will try to factor in his first appearance since a sixth in the Preakness (G1).
Four-time Grade 1 winner Private Zone, second in the 2015 Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1) and third in the 2014 edition, will make a belated 2016 bow and title defense in the $400,000 Belmont Sprint Championship (G3). Now age 7, the Brian Lynch-trained gelding was entered but scratched from the June 10 True North (G2). Private Zone rolled to a 3 ¼-length decision in last year’s event and retains the services of Martin Pedroza.
True North upsetter Joking is back for the 7-furlong race and the nine-horse field includes Anchor Down and Marking, the second- and fourth-placers in the Met Mile; and A.P. Indian, who registered a 106 BRIS Speed rating when posting a three-length tally in the recent Donald LeVine Memorial at Parx.
The $150,000 Victory Ride (G3) kicks off the stakes action and unbeaten Coppa will make her stakes debut against eight rivals in the 6 ½-furlong test. The Phil D’Amato trainee has shipped east off a pair of convincing wins, rolling to a 3 ¼-length triumph most recently in a May 21 Santa Anita allowance.
Stakes queen Flatterywillgetyou will put her four-race win skein on the line against open rivals and Lost Raven makes her first appearance since taking the Miss Preakness (G3) on May 20. Appealing Maggie and One True Kiss, second and third in the June 10 Jersey Girl at Belmont, are also entered.
Mubtaahij photo courtesy of Susie Raisher/Adam Coglianese Photography