Friday’s feature in Oldsmar is the kind we look forward to: promising young horses going a route of ground on turf. While there are several interesting plays, early line favorite Stride (2-1) will be an extremely tough out.
Following a dirt win on debut, he shipped to Kentucky Downs for a very salty allowance event on the undulating ground here against more seasoned rivals and acquitted himself fairly well, beating more than half the field in a 4-length defeat.
Undaunted, Arnaud Delacour entered him in the Laurel Futurity where the colt was a very good second to a well meant and impressive Brad Cox-trainee, Ready to Purrform, after chasing a lively pace throughout in aggressive fashion. There were seven rivals left in his wake.
Subsequent to that OCT 2 route– LAUREL, RACE 3, for those seeking visual verification–Stride shows seven works, five at his Fair Hill base and two locally, Turf ace Pablo Morales gets the call, his third for this barn at the meet, which includes a win and a in-the-money finish.
Considering he settled and came off the pace in his winning debut, Morales has options to deal with any scenario present and that’s the thing about a pace advantage. On the right mount, pace can be used at any point.
Taking Stride to win with no price restrictions, and key-boxing exactas with tough-trip price shot Chaotic Tempo (15-1) getting Jose Ferrer, High Stock (4-1) for Graham Motion, who exits that same race, and adding fast-figure synth-to-turf Optigogo (5-2) to the super-exotics mix.