06/05/2016 4:21PM

Brown puts up triple threat in New York Stakes

Michael Amoruso
Sea Calisi, winner of the Sheepshead Bay in her U.S. debut, is among three horses trainer Chad Brown plans to run in the Grade 2 New York.

ELMONT, N.Y. -  Trainer Chad Brown will bring both quantity and quality to this year’s New York Stakes.

Brown entered the powerful trio of Dacita, Guapaza, and Sea Calisi in the Grade 2, $500,000 New York scheduled for 1 1/4 miles over Belmont Park’s inner turf course. The New York is one of six stakes on Friday’s 11-race program that begins at 12:50 p.m. Eastern.

Brown will try duplicate a feat he accomplished earlier this year when he ran one-two-three  in the Grade 3 The Very One at Gulfstream Park with Olorda, Dacita, and Guapaza.

Olorda is sitting this one out but her owner Martin Schwartz will be well represented by the French-bred Sea Calisi. Sea Calisi made an auspicious U.S. debut for Brown and Schwartz by rallying from last behind a pedestrian pace to win the Grade 2 Sheepshead Bay here on May 7 by 2 1/2 lengths over Guapaza.

“She couldn’t have done any better,” Brown said of Sea Calisi. “She won easy and she’s done really well since. Right now she’s in top form.”

The turf was labeled yielding the day Sea Calisi won.

Dacita’s claim to fame may be the fact she is the last horse to defeat Tepin, doing so by a head in the Grade 2 Ballston Spa last Aug. 29 at Saratoga. Tepin has since won six straight and beat Dacita by 7 1/4 lengths in the Grade 1 Jenny Wiley at Keeneland in April.

In the New York, Sea Calisi (Jose Ortiz) has the rail, Dacita (Irad Ortiz Jr.) has post 2,  and Guapaza (John Velazquez) has post 7.

Photo Call, winner of the Grade 3 Orchid in her last start; Trophee, an allowance winner at Belmont in April, and European imports Havana Moon and Kyllachy Queen complete the field.

Private Zone returns in True North

The freakishly fast but sometimes quirky Private Zone will make his 7-year-old debut in Friday’s Grade 2, $250,000 True North Stakes going six furlongs.

Private Zone ended his 6-year-old season with a fifth-place finish as the 6-5 favorite in the Grade 1 Cigar Mile at Aqueduct. He was bearing out in the race, something he had done in his previous work one week before the Cigar Mile.

Trainer Brian Lynch has been happy with Private Zone’s last three breezes at Belmont Park - including a half-mile move from the gate in 46.07 seconds last Thursday.

Private Zone is 3 for 4 at Belmont with two victories in the Grade 1 Vosburgh and one in last year’s Grade 3 Belmont Sprint Championship. He will break from post 3 under Martin Pedroza.

Before being sent to Brian Lynch after running second in the Breeders’ Cup Sprint last October, Private Zone was trained by Jorge Navarro.

Navarro will run Catalina Red, who won the Grade 2 Churchill Downs in his last start, in the True North.

Always Sunshine, winner of the Maryland Sprint in his last start; Dads Caps, the two-time Grade 1 Carter winner; Holy Boss, and Joking complete the field.

Da Big Hoss tops Belmont Gold Cup

Da Big Hoss, winner of a pair graded stakes going 1 1/2 miles this year, tops a competitive field of 13 entered for the $300,000 Belmont Gold Cup Invitational at two miles over the Widener turf course.

Da Big Hoss, a 5-year-old son of Lemon Drop Kid trained by Mike Maker for Skychai Racing, won the Grade 2 Elkhorn at Keeneland in his last start. He began the year with a 4 3/4-length victory in the John B. Connally Turf Cup at Sam Houston.

Da Big Hoss, who drew post 5, takes on 12 rivals, including Grade 1 winners Twilight Eclipse and Up With the Birds as well as Belisarius, Tobias, Closing Bell, Tiz Town, Rum Tum Tugger, Silver Lime, Kaigun, My Afleet, Biz the Nurse, and Now We can.

In other stakes:

* Six juvenile colts were entered for Friday’s $200,000 Tremont Stakes, but they all may have to beat the filly Lady Stardust in the 5 1/2-furlong race.

Lady Stardust, a daughter of Union Rags trained by Wesley Ward, was visually impressive winning a 4 1/2-furlong race at Aqueduct by 5 1/2 lengths on April 21. She earned a Beyer Speed Figure of 79.

Ward also entered Lifelong Dreamer, who won a maiden $35,000 claimer at Gulfstream by 5 3/4 lengths.

Hey Mike, second as the favorite in the Kentucky Juvenile, and debut winners Saratoga Two Step, Silver Mission, Is Everybody Happy, and Pachi Cruze complete the field.

Off the Tracks, who suffered her first defeat when third to Go Maggie Go in the Gulfstream Park Oaks going 1 1/16 miles on April 2, will turn back in distance and heads a field of seven entered for Friday’s $150,000 Jersey Girl Stakes at six furlongs.

Off the Tracks won her first three starts sprinting, including the Grade 3 Schuylerville last summer at Saratoga. She drew the outside post and will be ridden by John Velazquez.

Blip n’ Th Bye, runner-up to Carina Mia in the Grade 2 Eight Belles heads the competition. She drew the rail.

In between Blip n’ Th Bye and Off the Tracks are Appealing Maggie, She’s All ready, Quick Release, One True Kiss, and Kareena.

* Theogony, Joint Return, and Mei Ling, the second-, third- and fifth-place finishers from the Allaire duPont Distaff on Preakness Day, head a six-horse field entered for the inaugural $150,000 Rags to Riches Stakes for fillies and mares at 1 1/2 miles on dirt.

The race is named for the filly who won the 2007 Belmont Stakes. Others entered are Sweetgrass, Stroke Play, and Milaya.


Ian GW 12 months ago
Race 10 looked good Friday. I didn't see much else. Last few weekends the field sizes are way down every track. Maybe Belmont day will be better.