Tipsheet: The Lecomte Stakes 2022

Profile Picture: John Mucciolo

January 20th, 2022

A strong field of nine sophomores will go 1 1/16 miles at Fair Grounds on Saturday in the $200,000 Lecomte S. (G3). The top four finishers will receive qualifying points on a 10-4-2-1 basis in the 2022 Road to the Kentucky Derby series contest.

Lecomte Stakes Picks

  • #5 Epicenter
  • #4 Trafalgar
  • #3 Pappacap
  • #8 Call Me Midnight

Lecomte Stakes Wagers

  • $10 win and place #5 Epicenter
  • $5 exacta 5 with 3, 4, 8
  • $1 trifecta key 5 with 3, 4, 6, 8

Lecomte Stakes Contenders

#1 SURFER DUDE was a game maiden winner two back prior to a third-place result in the Gun Runner S. last out for Dallas Stewart. The Curlin colt has speed and the rail, but he will need a major step forward to upset this deep cast.

#2 UNIFIED REPORT is perfect from a trio of sprints to date and gets a class test on Saturday. The Dallas Stewart pupil has done nothing wrong to date, and if he proves capable of running long, then the son of Unified could make a top-three run late. Corey Lanerie has the call.

#3 PAPPACAP makes his first run following a fine runner-up showing in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) for Mark Casse. The Gun Runner homebred shows four very good works on the surface in preparation for his three-year-old debut, and his best effort will make him tough to knock off under Joe Bravo.

#4 TRAFALGAR has won two straight following a runner-up debut for Al Stall, Jr. The expensive son of Lord Nelson has two route races under his belt, and he is also proven capable of rallying past horses in the stretch, which is a very good trait to possess in this endeavor. The upset contender will have Colby Hernandez in the stirrups.

#5 EPICENTER gets top billing coming off of a superb tally in the Gun Runner S. on the course in his latest endeavor. The Steve Asmussen trainee has shown big improvement following an unplaced sprint bow, and the son of Not This Time has a very high ceiling going forward. Joel Rosario will come in to guide the top selection.

#6 CYBERKNIFE graduated in his first route try on the oval last time out, and the interesting prospect will also add blinkers coming off of a victory. Brad Cox's charge has never run a bad race, and if the equipment change moves him forward, then the $400,000 yearling purchase will vie for a top-three finish on this occasion. Florent Geroux will pilot the chestnut.

#7 BLUE KENTUCKY came home third in the Sugar Bowl S. most recently, and he was unplaced in his lone route attempt to date, so the son of Include seems hard to endorse at this stage of his development.

#8 CALL ME MIDNIGHT didn’t fire in his first stakes run when seventh in the Kentucky Jockey Club S. (G2), but the colt will surely improve in his second black-type test for Desormeaux. The Midnight Lute sophomore showed a fine turn of foot in two straight when stretching out to route races in the fall, and I expect him to capitalize on the abundance of early pace that is signed on for this test at a nice price. James Graham will be up.

#9 PRESIDENTIAL dominated at Indiana Downs in his second assignment for Asmussen, but the expensive youngster draws widest in the field and is unproven with this kind, too. The Pioneerof the Nile colt will need a huge leap forward to challenge late against this cast.