Currency Swap captured the Hopeful (G1) at Saratoga in his 2011 finale, while Gemologist won the Kentucky Jockey Club (G2) at Churchill Downs in his last race as a juvenile.
Jockey Rajiv Maragh guided Currency Swap to a debut score and victory in the Hopeful last summer, both at Saratoga. The son of High Cotton was a $70,000 Fasig-Tipton Kentucky July yearling purchase. The form of his Hopeful victory was flattered by Hopeful runner-up Trinniberg’s six-length romp in last Saturday’s Swale Stakes (G2).
Currency Swap tuned up for his one-mile return with a sharp six-furlong workout in 1:11 2/5 from the starting gate at Gulfstream Park last Saturday.
“That was a fantastic work, way above expectations,” Pompay said. “He did it easily. He hardly took a drink of water cooling out.”
Leading rider Javier Castellano rode Gemologist in his last two starts last fall when he won an allowance race and the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes at Churchill Downs following a debut victory at Turfway Park. The son of Tiznow was a $310,000 Keeneland November weanling purchase in 2009.
Completing the field for Friday’s race are Angel Quiroz’ Jordon’s Image, Joe Rocco, Jr.; Steve Dwoskin’s Brother Pat, Elvis Trujillo; and E. Paul Robsham’s Angel’s Tune, John Velazquez, the latter also trained by Todd Pletcher.