Shotgun Kowboy installed as morning-line favorite for Lone Star Park Handicap
The four-year-old gelding will be looking for his first win since scoring back-to-back victories in the Oklahoma Derby (G3) and Oklahoma Classics Cup last fall at Remington Park. Shotgun Kowboy closed out his sophomore campaign with a seventh-place run in the Clark H. (G1) at Churchill Downs in November and was transferred to Bret Calhoun for his winter stand from trainer C.R. Trout’s shedrow.
The dark bay son of Kodiak Kowboy was unable to place in two starts for Calhoun, but showed signs of his previous winning form when returning to Trout’s barn to take part in the Texas Mile (G3) last out on May 6 at Lone Star Park. Shotgun Kowboy battled it out with Blue Tone and Carve in that contest and held the lead in the stretch before being passed late to finish a half-length second behind Great Minds.
Shotgun Kowboy will be reunited with jockey Luis Quinonez, with whom he captured a pair of Remington Park stakes in 2014, on Monday.
Carve faded in the Texas Mile to be five lengths behind Shotgun Kowboy on the wire. That followed a pair of dismal seventh-place runs at Oaklawn Park against graded rivals after opening his six-year-old season with a third in the Essex H.
The First Samurai gelding hasn’t visited the winner’s circle since taking the 2015 Fifth Season S., but did run second in both this race and the Oaklawn H. (G2) last year. Carve is 9-2 on the morning-line for trainer Steve Asmussen and gets Iram Diego back in the irons for Memorial Day Monday.
Rocket Time has gone 3-0-0 from four starts this year after competing just twice in 2015. The Al Stall Jr. pupil ran third in the Commonwealth S. (G3) at Keeneland in April 2015 and didn’t reappear until taking an allowance/optional claimer at Fair Grounds on January 8.
Winner of the 2014 Tenacious S., the five-year-old gelded son of Tiz Wonderful will be facing stakes rivals for just the fourth time in his career. The 7-2 morning-line third choice will have Colby Hernandez in the saddle for the first time in the Lone Star Park H.
Cyrus Alexander was made the 3-1 second favorite on the Lone Star Park ‘Cap morning-line following a fourth-place effort in the April 2 Santana Mile at Santa Anita Park. The Medaglia d’Oro four-year-old has yet to earn any stakes credit and will try to remedy that on Monday for trainer Jerry Hollendorfer. Martin Garcia has the call.
Supermason carries the local hopes from Calhoun’s barn. The four-year-old gelding romped in his last pair over the track by 10 1/2 lengths and even set a new turf course record for 7 1/2 furlongs in his May 15 allowance/optional claiming victory. The Texas-bred son of Grasshopper faces has proven versatile on both dirt and turf, and has the home field advantage under Lindey Wade while taking on graded foes for the first time.
The Lone Star Park H. field is completed by multiple stakes winner F J Uncle Vic, who finished third in the 2014 edition of the race, and Spider’s Alibi.
Lone Star Park, like many tracks across the country, is offering free general admission for military personnel on Memorial Day Monday. It is also part of TwinSpires.com’s Memorial Day Iron Man Challenge.
On Sundays at Lone Star Park, TwinSpires.com offers fans the chance to earn a 20 percent bonus on any winning Daily Double and Late Pick 4 ticket as well as 20X Points for the full card when they win $20 or more.
Shotgun Kowboy screenshot photo from Oklahoma Classics Cup win