Updated on 12/16/2010 6:33PM

Steady Warrior targets third stakes in Maryland Juvenile Championship

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Jim McCue/Maryland Jockey Club
Steady Warrior will go for his third stakes win in Saturday’s Maryland Juvenile Championship at Laurel.

Steady Warrior, with two stakes wins already to his credit after just four lifetime starts, tries to close out his 2-year-old campaign by adding another added-money triumph to his r é sum é in Saturday’s $50,000 Maryland Juvenile Championship, the closing-day feature at Laurel Park.

The 7 1/2-furlong, one-turn race, restricted to Maryland-breds, drew a field of six, four of whom have only a maiden victory to their credit.

In contrast, the locally based Steady Warrior is already well-accomplished. He romped by 7 1/4 lengths in the $100,000 Maryland Million Nursery in early October and overcame a stumbling start in which he went to his knees to draw clear by 1 1/4 lengths in last month’s $122,000 Tri-State Futurity, a two-turn, seven-furlong race at Charles Town.

“He’s a nice horse and is just learning how to run,” said Travis Dunkelberger, who has been aboard in all four races. “The lights at Charles Town freaked him out in his last race but her still won easy.”

 

Gary Capuano trains Steady Warrior for ZMP Stable. The same connections campaigned Steady Warrior’s sire, Cherokee’s Boy, who won 19 of 48 career races for nearly $1.2 million.

Based on pedigree and Beyer Speed Figures, Broad Rule looks like a viable alternative to the favorite. He will be facing statebreds for the first time after finishing in the money in 3 of 4 starts against open company. Last time out, Broad Rule closed to get second, missing by a neck, while earning a 73 Beyer that is seven points higher than Steady Warrior’s most recent figure.

Trained by Richard Small for Robert Meyerhoff’s Fitzhugh LLC, Broad Rule is a half-brother to several stakes winners, including Magic Broad, winner of the Maryland Juvenile Filly Championship and Grade 3 Selmina; and Include, whose $1.6 million in earnings was highlighted by a 2001 season in which he won the Grade 1 Pimlico Special and a pair of Grade 2 stakes, the New Orleans Handicap and the Massachusetts Handicap.

Based on his siblings’ ability to win going 1 1/8 miles or longer, the 7 1/2 furlongs of Saturday’s race should be well within Broad Rule’s scope.

Aside from Steady Warrior, the only other horse with more than a single victory in Saturday’s field is Go Maire Tu. He returns to his home track, where he won his dirt debut in July, after dull performances going two turns on turf and on the main track in the Dover Stakes at Delaware Park. In addition to shortening in distance to less than a mile, where he is 2 for 2 on dirt, Go Maire Tu drops from open company to face Maryland-breds for the first time.

Charles Town shipper C V Eis is intriguing making his first start since early October. He can fire fresh as evidenced by his seven-length score going 6 1/2 furlongs against open company in his career debut.