Three-year-olds take the spotlight this weekend beginning with today's Curlin Stakes, a route that's been a good springboard to the summer-fall season.

The 9-furlong trip drew eight horses, seven betting interests, and this is as open a races get with five horses, including both member of the Darley Stakes entry, owning a license to win this.

We're taking Proud Strike for several reasons. First, he was toughened this winter and spring in graded stakes along the Derby trail. After that, the connections got more realistic and found an excellent spot for a winning CD finale now ship here for Asmussen, who's been very live here, and Ricardo Santana takes the trip northeast from Kentucky.

Santana has been a revelation this season, winning at a 23% rate for the year, 28% and profitable for this outfit since May. He finally gets to try the distance getting out of graded company and away from older horses.
He will love this trip.

Taking Proud Strike to win at 5-2 or greater and keying him first and second in multiples with the very sharp Edge of Reality (4-1), the realistically spotted Midnight Taboo (6-1) and the Darley entry, the speedy Transparent and Ramansh, a Racing Flow Upgrade.

Number of Selections since May, 2007: 1357

Number of Win-Place-Show Finishers: 417-257-207

Amount Wagered: $2,714 [to win only]

Total Dollar Return on Investment: $2,851.90

Profit to Date: $137.90