10/26/2012 2:17PM

Churchill Downs: Agave Cat gets chance to display talent in Iroquois

Barbara D. Livingston
Overanalyze, winner of the Grade 2 Futurity at Belmont, is the probable Iroquois favorite.

They all start out equal, more or less, these 2-year-olds that make up the entire opening-day card of the Churchill Downs fall meet Sunday. Or so hopes John Good, the former longtime Bob Baffert assistant who will be sending out one of the mid-priced horses, Agave Cat, when he gives the Grade 3 Iroquois Stakes a try.

“He’s always been a nice little horse,” said Good. “He’s still kind of mentally immature, but that’s the way a lot of 2-year-olds are. He’s still putting everything together, but he does have a lot of talent.”

Agave Cat, with Robby Albarado to ride, will start from post 2 among the 10 juveniles in the Iroquois, which is run out of the Longfield Ave. chute as a one-turn mile. Agave Cat won at first asking on the Arlington Park turf before showing speed and finishing fourth in a small sprint stakes on the Oklahoma Derby undercard at Remington Park three weeks later.

“I’m pretty excited about him,” said Good. “I think essentially he’s a dirt horse. I only ran him on the grass at Arlington because I felt he might not have liked the Poly. He’s definitely a late developer, and I wanted to test him against this caliber of horses because I think it’ll bring him forward a good bit.”

The probable favorite in this 31st running of the $100,000 Iroquois is Overanalyze (post 6, Julien Leparoux), a drawing-off winner of the Grade 2 Futurity at Belmont four weeks ago for owner Mike Repole and trainer Todd Pletcher. Overanalyze will continue to get to run on the bleeder medication Lasix, as opposed to the Lasix ban in place for 2-year-olds in the upcoming Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita, which Repole is boycotting.

The other main contender in the Iroquois is Pataky Kid (post 3, Joel Rosario), winner of the Grade 3 Arlington-Washington Futurity and most recently a decent fourth in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Futurity at Keeneland. This will be just the second start on dirt for the Tom Proctor-trained colt.

Other considerations in a fairly deep cast include Five Iron, Heaven’s Runway, Uncaptured, and Positively. The longest shots figure to be Road Agent, Strike the Note, and Triple Cross.

The Iroquois is the traditional prep for the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes on closing weekend. The last horse to sweep both races was Tiz Wonderful in 2006. Named for the first American-bred to win the English Derby (1881), the Iroquois goes as the 10th of 11 Sunday races, with post time set for 5:02 p.m. Eastern. HRTV will have full live coverage.