A tough bunch of turf sprinters, including the mares Got Stormy and Oleksandra , are set to compete in the $400,000 Jackpocket Jaipur Stakes (G1T) at six furlongs on the inner turf. The June 5 race at Belmont Park is part of the 13-race card highlighted by the Belmont Stakes Presented by NYRA Bets (G1).
The Jaipur is a “Win and You’re In” race for the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (G1T). Oleksandra earned the berth last year with a win in the Jaipur, but ran ninth in the Breeders’ Cup. In two Breeders’ Cup appearances, Got Stormy finished fifth in the 2020 Turf Sprint and second in the 2019 TVG Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1T).
Got Stormy brings the biggest bankroll to the 12-horse Jaipur field, with total earnings of $2,111,403. Mark Casse trains the 6-year-old daughter of Get Stormy —Super Phoebe, by Malabar Gold, for MyRacehorse and Spendthrift Farm. Winner of nine stakes, including the 2019 Fourstardave Handicap (G1T) and Matriarch Stakes (G1T), both at a mile, Got Stormy in 2021 has won the one-mile Honey Fox Stakes (G3T) and run fifth in the Longines Churchill Distaff Turf Mile (G2T).
Got Stormy has successfully shortened up in the past. In 2020, she succeeded at 6 1/2 furlongs in the Kentucky Downs Ladies Sprint Stakes (G3T) and at 5 1/2 furlongs in the Buffalo Trace Franklin County Stakes (G3T) at Keeneland.
“It worked for her last year,” said Casse. “The only race so far of any significance this year was too short for her, so we opted to give her a try going a mile with moderate success. So, we wanted to see if cutting her back didn’t help.”
Regular rider Tyler Gaffalione will be back aboard from post 11.
This year’s Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint at Del Mar will be contested at five furlongs.
“It would be nice to win a Breeders’ Cup with her,” said Casse. “The (Turf) Sprint is maybe too short, but she’s had luck at Del Mar. Usually, you get a pretty firm turf at Del Mar, so for her to have a shot out there, it would have to be in the Mile (G1T).”
Team Valor’s homebred Oleksandra hasn’t won in four starts since her Jaipur victory. Now a 7-year-old, the mare came out of last year’s Jaipur with a fractured left front splint bone. In her 2021 debut, the Jan. 9 Las Cienegas Stakes (G3T), she lost the jockey. She subsequently ran second in the Wishing Well Stakes and fifth in the Unbridled Sidney Stakes. Joe Bravo will ride the Australian-bred daughter of Animal Kingdom from post 9 for trainer Neil Drysdale.
Phil D’Amato, the current leading trainer at Santa Anita, is shipping Gregorian Chant to Belmont for the Jaipur. Slam Dunk Racing, Andrew Molasky, and Michael Nentwig own the 5-year-old son of Gregorian . Since being gelded and pointed to turf sprints, Gregorian Chant is a perfect 3-for-3, including a win in the San Simeon Stakes (G3T) at Santa Anita Park.
Gregorian Chant wins the San Simeon Stakes at Santa Anita Park
“He’s training as good as he always has,” said D’Amato. “His last two works have been bullet works. There should be some cut in the ground because it looks like it’s going to rain off and on all week there. But he had won his two stakes over here and it rained a couple of days prior each time here, so I don’t think he’ll mind a little cut in the ground.”
Gregorian Chant drew post 8, with Luis Saez getting the call.
Bound for Nowhere takes earnings of $999,857 into the Jaipur for owner/trainer Wesley Ward. The 7-year-old son of The Factor most recently captured the April 3 Shakertown Stakes (G2T) at Keeneland. He has traveled to England for three consecutive years, his best effort there a third in the 2018 Diamond Jubilee Stakes (G1). Joel Rosario will ride from post 6.
Trainer Bill Mott will send out out Casa Creed (post 2 with Junior Alvarado) and Chewing Gum (post 1 with Jose Ortiz). Casa Creed is coming off a win in the April 24 Elusive Quality Stakes at Belmont, and Chewing Gum last fall finished second in the Belmont Turf Sprint Invitational Stakes (G3T).
The rest of the field includes Completed Pass (post 3, Angel Cruz), Fast Boat (post 4, Irad Ortiz Jr.), Greyes Creek (post 5, Ricardo Santana Jr.), Secret Rules (post 7, Alvarado’s second call and for the main track only), Stubbins (post 10, Javier Castellano), and Sombeyay (post 12, Flavien Prat).
Belmont Park, Saturday, June 05, 2021, Race 6
- Grade I
- Inner turf
- 3 yo’s & up
- 2:41 PM (local)