MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (April 22, 2010) – Farnsworth Stables’ 7-year-old Jet Propulsion and Quantum Racing Team #1 LLC’s 5-year-old Mambo Meister are Graded stakes-winning geldings and will be among the choices in a particularly strong field of 11 older horses drawn for Sunday’s $100,000 Miami Mile Handicap (G3), highlight of the 40th opening day program at Calder Casino and Race Course.
Jockey Elvis Trujillo is named to ride Jet Propulsion leading a team of four entered in the race from trainer Marty Wolfson’s powerful arsenal of stakes runners. The son of Double Honor won the 2007 renewal of the Miami Mile for previous connections and was claimed by Wolfson for $50,000 out of a winning race at Calder on Dec. 12.
Jockey Manoel Cruz will be aboard Mambo Meister for trainer Phil Gleaves as he comes back from a brief freshening since finishing eighth behind Courageous Cat in the Canadian Turf, beaten 5 ¼ lengths. The son of King Cugat is highly-versatile winning stakes on turf and dirt here last year.
Mambo Meister was on the road during the second half of last season with good efforts finishing second in the Fourstardave Handicap (G2) at Saratoga and a close-up fourth in the Red Bank Stakes (G3) at Monmouth Park. He completed his campaign with a solid fifth-place performance in the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1) at Santa Anita on Nov. 7, beaten only two lengths for it all with trouble in the stretch.
Two others that will attract support in Sunday’s race are Edward P. Evans’ 6-year-old Pleasant Strike and Lazy F Ranch and William S. Farish’s 4-year-old ridgling Pinckney Hill for trainers Todd Pletcher and Angel Penna, Jr., respectively, both horses left on at Palm Meadows for this race after most of their stablemates have shipped north for the summer.
Pleasant Strike is a Virginia homebred son of Smart Strike making his first start since a game third-place effort in the River City Handicap (G3) at Churchill Downs on Nov. 27 following tough photo-finish seconds in the Red Bank at Monmouth and Cliff Hanger Stakes (G3) at Meadowlands. Jockey Chris DeCarlo will ride.
Rajiv Maragh rides Pinckney Hill as the lightly-raced son of A.P. Indy bids for a third straight victory after a pair of allowance victories over the Gulfstream course, most recently a three-quarters of a length score with 2009 Calder Derby (G3) winner Sal the Barber second on Mar. 7. Pinckney Hill has won four of six career starts.
Trainer Christophe Clement also left a contender behind at Payson Park for the Miami Mile with EMD Stables’ 6-year-old March to Victory to be ridden by Joe Bravo after winning for a $50,000 claiming tag at Gulfstream last out on Mar. 21 in his first start since July at Belmont Park.
Wolfson’s other three entries are Team Valor International and Gary Barber’s Motovato, Team Valor International’s Stones River and Timothy O’Toole’s Gentleman James, all 5-year-olds that have made their mark in main track events in the past. Motovato finished second last out in the one-mile Gulfstream Park Handicap (G2) on Mar. 13.
Completing the field for the Miami Mile are Isaac Muhtar’s Fearless Eagle, Paco Lopez; Ione and Herb Elkins’ Dream Maestro, Juan Leyva; and Susan and Jim Hill’s Storm Caller, Elvis Trujillo.