08/30/2013 5:04PM

Saratoga: Corfu leads three for Pletcher in Hopeful

Tom Keyser
Corfu (right) narrowly defeated Wired Bryan in the Saratoga Special. They will meet again in the Hopeful.

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SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Todd Pletcher entered Friday’s action having won 15 races for juveniles at Saratoga, including two stakes. He had a plethora of 2-year-olds still to run and entered a trio of horses in Monday’s Grade 1, $300,000 Hopeful Stakes on the closing-day program.

Pletcher entered Saratoga Special winner Corfu, and debut winners All in Blue and King Cyrus in the seven-furlong Hopeful. All in Blue was also cross-entered in Sunday’s Sapling Stakes at Monmouth.

The Hopeful, which Pletcher won last year with eventual 2-year-old champion Shanghai Bobby, was restored to a Grade 1 after having been run as a Grade 2 in 2012.

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Corfu, a son of Malibu Moon, will be making his third start of the meet, having won a maiden race here on July 25 and the Grade 2 Saratoga Special on Aug. 11. All in Blue won his debut on July 4 at Belmont before finishing fourth after stumbling at the break of the Saratoga Special and finishing fourth.

King Cyrus won his debut by 11 lengths going seven furlongs here on Aug. 5, but the race came back slow on many speed figures, including Beyers, earning just a 58.

“It was one of those things if you didn’t look at the time and didn’t look at the figures and you just watched the race the horse was impressive,” Pletcher said. “What was really impressive was what he did after the wire when he galloped out. On paper, it looked like a maiden race that had some well-meant horses, some good pedigrees, and good connections. I can’t imagine they’re all that slow.”

Corfu drew post 4 and will be ridden by John Velazquez. All in Blue is in post 5 with Irad Ortiz Jr. named. King Cyrus is in post 10 with Javier Castellano.

Trainer Steve Asmussen entered the duo of Southern Blessing and Big Sugar Soda. Southern Blessing, who drew the rail, won his debut at Churchill before finishing second in the Grade 2 Sanford here to Wired Bryan. Big Sugar Soda, who drew post 6, comes off a powerful 8 1/4-length victory here on July 22 in one of the more visually impressive performances by a 2-year-colt at the meet. Mike Smith will be in town to ride him.

Wired Bryan, the winner of the Sanford and tough-luck loser of the Saratoga Special, drew post 8. Long On Value, a new addition to the Bill Mott barn after winning all three of his starts; Casiguapo, an 11-length winner at Calder on July 22; Lunarwarfare, and Strong Mandate complete the field.

Tannery back with females

After finishing a respectable fourth against males in the Grade 1 Sword Dancer Invitational here on Aug. 17, Tannery will return to face her own gender in Monday’s Grade 3, $150,000 Glens Falls Stakes at 1 3/8 miles.

Earlier this year, Tannery won the Grade 2 Sheepshead Bay at Belmont Park at the Glens Falls distance. When racing in Europe last year, Tannery also won a stakes against males at 1 3/8 miles at Limerick in Ireland.

Tannery drew post 8 and will be ridden by Javier Castellano.

The Glens Falls drew Anjaz, Mystical Star, and Angel Terrace – the 2-3-4 finishers from the $100,000 Waya Stakes here going 1 1/2 miles on Aug. 5.

Others entered include Cash for Clunkers, Layali Dubai, Minakshi, Strathnaver, and White Rose.