HOT SPRINGS, AR – Don’t Tell My Wife Stables and Monomoy Stables’ My Boy Jack rallied hard along the rail and drew off convincingly to take Monday’s Grade 3, $500,000 Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn Park.
Unhurried early from the rail under Kent Desormeaux, My Boy Jack took back and saved ground. Meanwhile, the favored Mourinho posted fractions of :23.46, :47.70, and 1:13.56 while feeling pressure to his outside from Road to Damascus. Desormeaux gave the cue heading into the far turn and found an opening along the rail. Hitting the top of the stretch with a head in front, the Keith Desormeaux-trained colt burst forward with a big rally down the front stretch and crossed 4 1/2 lengths clear of second in a final time of 1:46.00 for the 1 1/16-mile trek through the mud.
“It was a complete turnaround effort from his last start,” Kent said. “Last time, he was quiet as a church mouse in the gate, but got very aggressive early, and I was just skiing around there. When I turned him loose, he just galloped home. He didn’t power home like he did today.
“Today, he was quite calm and let me ride him, and that was the biggest difference. He didn’t waste any energy going around the race track, so he flew home. Great training job by Keith.”
Combatant was unable to catch the winner after rallying down the stretch but was well ahead of the rest of the field, taking second by 2 1/2 lengths. Sporting Chance won the photo finish over Mourinho for third in his first start in six months. Zing Zang took fifth over Kentucky Club, while Seven Trumpets and Retirement Fund dead-heated for seventh. Road to Damascus and Ezmoshh completed the order of finish Principe Guilherme was scratched after his connections chose to run him in Saturday’s Grade 2 Risen Star Stakes at Fair Grounds.
The Southwest is part of the Road to the 2018 Kentucky Derby prep race season. My Boy Jack earned 10 points for the win, with Combatant receiving 4 for second, Sporting Chance 2 for third, and Mourinho 1 for fourth.
My Boy Jack’s win was his first over dirt after finding success on grass as a juvenile. The 3-year-old son of Creative Cause improved his record to 8-2-3-1 with career earnings of $425,145 and could very well return to Oaklawn for more points.
“The best part about the race is he’s going to a Derby,” Kent Desormeaux said. “It may be the Arkansas Derby, but he’s Derby-bound.”
My Boy Jack returned $19.60 to win, $8.20 to place, and $5.20 to show. Combatant brought back $6 to place and $4 to show, while Sporting Chance paid $5 to show.