08/25/2009 11:00PM

Quality Road favored in field of seven


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - winner Quality Road drew post 4 and was installed as the 8-5 morning-line favorite in a seven-horse field entered for Saturday's $1 million Shadwell Travers Stakes at Saratoga.

Two hours before the draw, the Travers lost winner Mine That Bird, who was not entered after his connections decided not to run the gelding 11 days after he underwent throat surgery to repair an entrapped epiglottis.

Quality Road, trained by Todd Pletcher, will be making just his second start since winning the Florida Derby on March 28. On Aug. 3, he won the going 6 1/2 furlongs in a track-record 1:13.74. This will be his first start at 1 1/4 miles. John Velazquez rides.

winner Summer Bird drew post 6 and was made the 3-1 second choice on NYRA oddsmaker Eric Donovan's line. Summer Bird will try to become the 30th Belmont winner to also take the Travers, the last being Birdstone, the sire of Summer Bird.

winner Kensei drew post 6 and was installed as the 7-2 third choice. He is owned by Jess Jackson's Stonestreet Stables and trained by Steve Asmussen, the same connections of superstar filly Rachel Alexandra, who was held out of the Travers to run in the Grade 1, $750,000 Woodward on Sept. 5.

The Travers will be race 12 on a 13-race card that begins at 11:35 a.m. It is also the third leg of a late pick four with a guaranteed pool of $1 million.


1. Hold Me Back - Julien Leparoux - Bill Mott - 15-1

2. Charitable Man - Ramon Dominguez - Kiaran McLaughlin - 8-1

3. Warrior's Reward - Calvin Borel - Ian Wilkes - 8-1

4. Quality Road - John Velazquez - Todd Pletcher - 8-5

5. Our Edge - Alan Garcia - Nick Zito - 15-1

6. Summer Bird - Kent Desormeaux - Tim Ice - 3-1

7. Kensei - Edgar Prado - Steve Asmussen - 7-2

All carry 126 pounds