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Woodbine: Casse-trained maiden winners step up for Display Stakes
By Ron Gierkink
ETOBICOKE, Ontario – Trainer Mark Casse entered maiden winners Gunderman and Sky Commander in Saturday’s $150,000 Display Stakes, a 1 1/16-mile test for 2-year-olds at Woodbine which was won by last year’s divisional champion, Maritimer.
Gunderman, a son of Belmont Stakes winner Birdstone, won fourth time out in his initial venture around two turns Oct. 24.
“He split horses and showed a lot of guts,” Casse said. “He’s always trained better than he’s run. With his breeding, I think he’s going to get better.”
Sky Commander also graduated in his fourth start, which came over 1 1/16 miles on the grass Oct. 12. Like Gunderman, he earned a 74 Beyer Speed Figure.
“He made the lead pretty easy and kind of pulled himself up a little,” Casse recalled. “The horse he beat came back and won impressively.”
The Display will be Sky Commander’s first start on the Polytrack.
“He’s trained really good on it,” Casse said. “His last couple of works have been better than average. We’re excited to see him run on it.”
Really Sharp could be favored off his good form in graded stakes company in the United States.
After graduating here on the Polytrack, Really Sharp was beaten a nose after running erratically in the stretch of the Grade 3 Bourbon at Keeneland. He was disqualified and placed sixth in that turf route.
Most recently in the Grade 2 Nashua at Aqueduct, Really Sharp vied for the lead before fading to third in the one-turn mile.
Clearly Now is unbeaten in two six-furlong starts. He earned a big 85 Beyer for winning a first-level allowance in 1:09.68 on Nov. 3.
Trainer Brian Lynch said he’s confident that he has Clearly Now ready to go long.
“I got a couple of nice works into him where I think I’ve got him fit enough to stretch out,” Lynch said. “I think he can sprint just because he’s talented. He’s a very rateable horse.”
Avie’s Quality owns the highest two-turn Beyer in the lineup, an 82, which was earned in his five-length romp in a Nov. 14 maiden special. He was previously a charging second to Sky Commander.
Trainer Dave Cotey sends out My Name Is Michael and Mercenary.
My Name Is Michael, a son of Macho Uno, has improved significantly with each subsequent race and was recently third behind Clearly Now.
Mercenary trailed in sixth in his last outing, in the Grade 3 Grey Stakes, from which Uncaptured exited to land his next two starts in graded stakes at Churchill.
Dan the Tin Man is experimenting around two turns, with a blend of speed and stamina in his pedigree.
- 1.Posted 06/18/2013 09:59AM
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