06/06/2012 11:39AM

Monmouth Park: Travelin Man tries to bounce back in Friday optional claimer

Tom Keyser
Travelin Man will try to rebound in an optional claimer Friday at Monmouth Park.

Travelin Man, a Grade 2 winner during his 3-year-old campaign last year, is among five horses who accounted for 11 stakes victories the past two seasons in Friday’s feature race for older sprinters at Monmouth Park.

The six-furlong race, which goes as race 7, is a fourth-level optional $75,000 claimer that also is open to horses who have not won an allowance or stakes in 2012. None of the seven entrants will run for the claiming tag.

The 4-year-old Travelin Man, part of a coupled entry for owner Paul Robsham Stables and trainer Todd Pletcher, has registered triple-digit Beyer Speed Figures in three of his four lifetime victories, including a 100 for his half-length score in the Sir Shackleton overnight stakes at Gulfstream Park in March.

Each time he has posted a big Beyer, however, Travelin Man has regressed next time out. Most recently, Travelin Man broke awkwardly and never was in contention while finishing last of five in a six-furlong overnight stakes at Belmont Park on May 10. His Beyer dropped 25 points to a 75.

His stablemate, Soaring Stocks, won the restricted Sunshine Millions Sprint in late January. He displayed an affinity for Monmouth’s main track when he won his maiden last summer by six lengths.

The field also includes Comedero, who looked good winning his season debut in a stakes restricted to Arkansas-breds at Oaklawn Park in February but flashed speed and faded badly in two subequent starts. He did, however, finish four lengths ahead of Travelin Man when they met a month ago in New York and is 9 for 12 lifetime going six furlongs.

Golddigger’s Boy, a three-time stakes winner in 2011, returns to open company after collecting a win via disqualification against Pennsylvania-breds in the seven-furlong Lyman at Parx Racing two months ago. Although most of Golddigger’s Boy’s best performances have come against statebreds, he did defeat open stakes company in the $200,000 Donald LeVine Memorial Handicap going seven furlongs last June.

Sloane Ranger, winner of last fall’s Maryland Million Sprint, finished 1 1/2 lengths directly behind Golddigger’s Boy in the Lyman after setting a contested pace.

Congressional Page was 3 for 3 at Monmouth, including the 2010 running of the Decathlon, until he fell as part of a multiple horse spill in this year’s Decathlon on opening day.