Bred by Campbell and trained by Kathleen O’Connell, Two T’s At Two B is the most accomplished runner on the 12-race Juvenile Showcase program having visited the winner’s circle three times during his unbeaten career, adding a 7 ¼-length maiden triumph and a 5 ¼-length victory in the $100,000 Frank Gomez Memorial to his 3 ¾-length win in the Dr. Fager.
After finishing third in her career debut, the Easton DeSouza-trained Candy Coded Kisses has returned to post two straight victories, breaking her maiden against male rivals in her second start before springing a 24-1 upset when four lengths the best in the Desert Vixen.
The daughter of Omega Code will chase her third consecutive win, and her second successive stakes score, when starting from post six under Cecilio Penalba in the Susan’s Girl, which drew a field of nine, including Ione and Herbert Elkins’ Putyourdreamsaway, runner-up in the Desert Vixen, and Our Sugar Bear Stable’s So Blessed, that race’s third-place finisher.
Newcomers of note in the Susan’s Girl include Miller Racing, LLC’s Jewel in the Sky, a 6 ¾-length allowance winner in her last, and Rustlewood Farm, Inc.’s Nasty Cat, who overcame a poor start to post a 2 ¼-length maiden-breaking victory in her career debut.
While the Florida Stallions Stakes are the most prestigious events on the Juvenile Showcase program, perhaps the most intriguing stake of the day is the $75,000 Seacliff Stakes, a one-mile main-track event that drew a competitive field of eight, headlined by Rosa Taveras’ unbeaten Sr. Quisqueyano.
Trained by Luis Olivares, Sr. Quisqueyano showed great promise when winning his career debut by 2 ¾ lengths in mid-April, but the colt put his brilliance on full display in an August 11 allowance race in which he bested his nearest pursuer by 12 ¼ lengths.
The son of Exclusive Quality starts from post seven in the Seacliff and will be ridden by Jozbin Santana.
The dominance of Sr. Quisqueyano is expected to be challenged in Saturday’s race by a pair of recent open-length maiden winners in Gilbert Campbell’s Mayberry Madness and Herman Van Den Broeck’s Singanothersong.
Trained by Kathleen O’Connell, Mayberry Madness was never doing much of anything when seventh in his career debut but has since returned with a 15 ¾-length throttling of his opponents in an August 10 maiden race.
The Ron Pellegrini-trained Singanothersong enters the Seacliff Stakes off a rousing maiden win on July 22, a race in which he was never presented with a challenge en route to a 6 ½-length victory. Prior to that performance, the son of Songandaprayer was a troubled second to recent Grade 2 Sanford Stakes fourth-place finisher Brave Dave in his career debut.
There was no lack of interest in the $75,000 Fasig-Tipton Turf Dash, which attracted a full field of 12 runners that includes a trio of turf-experienced horses shipping to Calder from parts elsewhere to participate in the five-furlong sprint.
Wesley Ward’s Rip Roarin Ritchie is the lone two-time winner in the field, piecing together an August 5 victory in the $61,000 Tyro Stakes over the Monmouth Park grass course with a maiden win over the Churchill Downs turf on June 15.
The speedy homebred son of Bring the Heat will start from post eight in the Fasig-Tipton Turf Dash and will be ridden by Jesus Rios.
Trilogy Stable and Laurie Plesa’s Itsmyluckyday, beaten less than a length by Rip Roarin Ritchie in the Tyro, will look to exact revenge on that rival when starting from post two under jockey Manoel Cruz in Saturday’s turf tilt.
A maiden winner on the main track, the Eddie Plesa trainee was also entered in the Seacliff Stakes, but appears more likely to contest Saturday’s turf sprint.
Ron McCauley’s Law Dog, last seen finishing fifth as the favorite in the $100,000 Graduation Stakes on the all-weather track at Del Mar, has crossed the continent in search of his first stakes win and will start from post six in Saturday’s Turf Dash.
Trained by Tevis McCauley, and to be ridden by Sarah Rook, the well-traveled Law Dog broke his maiden in a five-furlong turf sprint at Indiana Downs in early July. Prior to that performance, the son of Unusual Heat finished a close fourth in a maiden race on the Churchill turf and was third when unveiled on the all-weather track at Presque Isle Downs.
The $75,000 Catcharisingstar, the filly companion race to the Fasig-Tipton Turf Dash, drew a field of 10, and a McCauley-trained runner figures to play a prominent role in the outcome of that race as McCauley Farms’ homebred Zip Cash Back invades off consecutive turf-sprint victories, most recently the $50,000 Tippett Stakes at Colonial Downs.
The lone starter in the Catcharisingstar field with any turf experience, Zip Cash Back starts from post seven and will be ridden by Rook.
The $75,000 Lindsay Frolic Stakes, run at one mile on the main track, presents an anomaly of sorts as seven of the eight entrants are maidens looking for their first career victory, with Monarch Stables, Inc.’s Street Magic the lone winner among the field.
Trained by Dave Vivian, Street Magic was a powerful 5 ¼-length maiden winner in her April 22 career debut, but could do no better than a distant fourth when stepping up to meet allowance rivals on August 12. The homebred daughter of Street Hero drew post eight for the Lindsay Frolic and will be ridden by Luca Panici.
Of the remaining seven maidens in the field, perhaps Rontos Racing Stable Corp.’s Caraquista is the most imposing as she exits a second-place finish in a July 29 maiden race where she was beaten less than a length when giving up the lead in the shadow of the wire.
The Jose Garoffalo-trained daughter of Ghostzapper starts from post three in the Lindsay Frolic and will be ridden by Joe Rodriguez.
In addition to the six-pack of stakes, Juvenile Showcase will present six additional races restricted to 2-year-olds, including the first two juvenile turf races of the meet, both of which drew overflow fields, a pair of main-track maiden special weight events that each attracted 12 runners, a $25,000 maiden claiming event that opens the day with a fill field of 12, and a starter allowance for winners that have run for $25,000 or less.
Having been recognized over the years as a national proving ground for 2-year-old horses, the Juvenile Showcase was conceived and executed for the first time in 2003, and past winners on the day include subsequent Breeders’ Cup and Eclipse Award champions Awesome Feather and Big Drama, along with Grade 1 winners In Summation and Jackson Bend.
The list of top 2-year-olds that have run at Calder does not stop with Juvenile Showcase day, as the Priscilla Vaccarezza-owned and Carlo Vaccarezza-bred two-time 2012 Grade 1 champion and recent Arlington Million hero Little Mike competed in Miami Gardens during his juvenile season, along with eventual Eclipse Award winners Blind Luck, Holy Bull, Musical Romance, Spend A Buck, and Unbridled.
First-race post time on Juvenile Showcase day is 12:55 p.m. with the stakes portion of the program to commence with the Seacliff Stakes, as race seven, at approximately 3:45 p.m. The Seacliff will be followed by the Lindsay Frolic at 4:17 p.m., the Fasig-Tipton Turf Dash at 4:48 p.m., the Affirmed Division of the Florida Stallion Stakes at 5:20 p.m., and the Susan’s Girl Division of the Stallion Stakes at 5:49 p.m., before the curtain closes on the card with the Catcharisingstar at 6:14 p.m.