11/12/2016 3:35PM

Squadron shakes loose to win Juvenile Turf Stakes


Squadron remained undefeated in two starts when he darted to a 3 1/4-length win over favorite Front Loaded in the $100,000 Juvenile Turf Stakes at Gulfstream Park West on Saturday. The race, restricted to 2-year-olds bred in Florida, was one of seven stakes on the card.

Some of the races were designed to produce starters for the Sunshine Millions program Jan. 21 at Gulfstream Park.

Squadron ($11.20) came into the Juvenile Turf off a debut win against fellow Florida-breds on Sept. 25 at Gulfstream. He was making both his turf and two-turn debut Saturday and was content to sit in third behind Salute With Honor and Apache Brave, who dueled through an opening quarter in 23.48 seconds. Squadron continued to stalk through a half-mile in 48.55 seconds, rallied to the fore into the stretch, and worked to get past a stubborn Apache Brave.

Squadron then shook free, and went on to cover the distance on firm ground in 1:39.59. Eddie Castro was aboard for what was his second straight stakes win on the card, behind the Millions Preview Distaff with Moment of Delight ($5).

Todd Pletcher trains Squadron, a son of Midshipman, who races for Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners.

Juvenile Sprint

In the $100,000 Juvenile Sprint, Sweetontheladies closed into a fast pace for a three-length win over Storming My Way. It was another three-quarters of a length back to Red Crescent in third.

Following the finish, there was both a stewards’ inquiry and jockey’s objection against the winner concerning the stretch run, but no change was made to the order of finish.

Sweetontheladies ($8.20) had one horse beat early as Two Steps Before and Cinderela El Crome went at it through fractions of 21.64 seconds for the opening quarter and 44.08 for the half-mile. Sweetontheladies picked up rivals on the turn, came five wide into the stretch, and swept past his rivals. He covered the 6 1/2 furlongs for Florida-breds on a fast track in 1:16.73.

Marcos Meneses rode the winner for trainer Henry Collazo. Sweetontheladies is a son of Twirling Candy and is owned by the partnership of Four Horsemen Racing Stable and Lady Lindsay Racing Stables.