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Eddie D Preview: Wildman Jack Returns to Turf
Wildman Jack noses out Sparky Ville to win the Daytona (Credit: Benoit Photo)

Eddie D Preview: Wildman Jack Returns to Turf

ARCADIA, CA – W C Racing homebred Wildman Jack returns to the turf for his final Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint (G1) prep in Friday’s $200,000 Eddie D Stakes (G2) at Santa Anita Park.

The Eddie D is a 5 1/2-furlong turf sprint restricted to horses ages 3 and up. This year’s edition is the seventh event on a 10-race card that kicks off Santa Anita Park’s fall meet and has a local post time of 3:30 PM.

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Here’s a look at the full field for the Eddie D:

1. Wildman Jack 5/2 – He’s back on the grass after finishing fourth in the Bing Crosby Stakes (G1) on the Del Mar dirt. He narrowly won the Daytona Stakes (G3) over this course and distance back in May in his first start after winning the Nad Al Sheba Turf Sprint (G3) at Meydan in Dubai.

2. Give Me the Lute 12/1 – He returns to the Southern California circuit after putting together a 3-2-1-0 record on the Golden Gate Fields lawn. The speedy California-bred will likely challenge the runners to his immediate inside and outside for the early lead in his stakes debut.

3. Mr Vargas 4/1 – He returns to the track for his first start since finishing last of eight in last year’s edition, his first misstep on turf. He won last August’s Green Flash Handicap (G3) at Del Mar and has been working up a storm at Los Alamitos for trainer Brian Koriner, who hits at 10% after similar layoffs.

4. Grit and Curiosity 6/1 – He returns to the Land of Milk and Honey for the first time since debuting in a 2019 Valentine’s Day sprint over the local dirt. He broke his maiden while going 1 mile on the Indiana Grand lawn and won a pair of Oaklawn Park allowances in February, his most recent starts.

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5. Sparky Ville 6/1 – He came within a nose of defeating Wildman Jack in the Daytona and won a 5-furlong Del Mar optional claiming event in July. He’s yet to put together back-to-back strong efforts in his 15-race career, but Hall of Famer Mike Smith riding for the third straight time is a strong vote.

6. El Tigre Terrible 4/1 – He returns to the turf after winning the 7-furlong Real Good Deal Stakes over the Del Mar dirt last time out. He won the 5-furlong Speakeasy Stakes last October over this course, but he faces the tall task of facing elders for the first time as a 3-year-old.

7. Big Runnuer 3/1 – Though he struggled to stay healthy enough to even debut until last October at age 4, he’s yet to miss the board in 6 career starts and won his stakes debut in the Siren Lure over this course and distance last time out. He’s posted twin bullet workouts leading up to this test.

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