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It was a sneaky good weekend for racing, with exciting action at Gulfstream Park on Saturday and a solid running of the Springboard Mile Stakes at Remington Park on Sunday. Let’s see how it all shook out with our latest Three Stars of the Week:
The old man did it! At the age of 7, War Story picked up his second stakes win of the season, taking home the Harlan’s Holiday Stakes (G3) at Gulfstream Park by 1 1/2 lengths. The horse was making his first start for trainer Elizabeth Dobles after spending the majority of his career with Jorge Navarro. With Bodexpress setting a fast pace early, the race was setting up perfectly for War Story, who was sitting in mid-pack up the backside. Turning for home, you could tell Bodexpress began to weaken, while War Story was ready to pounce. From there, the experienced gelding was able to grind home for the victory. This win will likely earn him a shot at the Pegasus World Cup (G1) for his next start.
It was a brutally cold evening at Remington Park; however, Shoplifted was able to heat things up with a hard-fought win in the Springboard Mile. For the third straight season, the Springboard Mile served as a Kentucky Derby Prep race, which adds to its importance. Shoplifted had to fight for every inch when approaching the wire, as he just nosed out Answer In at the finish, with Embolden a 1/2-length back in third. The three horses put on a show, while the rest of the field several lengths behind them. We’ll see if this performance can equate to success as a 3-year-old, with the waters only getting deeper from here.
We should never doubt Chad Brown when he’s running in a turf stakes, especially at Gulfstream Park. He was able to pull down yet another big victory on Saturday, this time in the Ft. Lauderdale Stakes (G2) with Instilled Regard. After starting his career on the dirt, Instilled Regard has found a home on the turf, where he captured the biggest win of his career on Saturday. Jockey Irad Ortiz, Jr., was able to work out a perfect stalking trip along the rail in fourth, saving ground on both turns before getting Instilled Regard through in the late stages of the race to get up for the victory by a 1/2-length. A win like this could lead to a start in the Pegasus World Cup Turf (G1) for his next start.
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