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Speakeasy Preview: Forbidden Kingdom Swaps Surfaces
Forbidden Kingdom (Credit: Ernie Belmonte)

Speakeasy Preview: Forbidden Kingdom Swaps Surfaces

ARCADIA, CA – After impressively breaking his maiden on debut over the Del Mar dirt, Hall of Fame trainer Richard Mandella’s Forbidden Kingdom swaps surfaces for his second career start in Friday’s $100,000 Speakeasy Stakes at Santa Anita Park.

The Speakeasy is a 5-furlong turf sprint restricted to 2-year-olds that serves as the fifth event on a 9-race card with a local post time of 3:05 PM. The race is also a Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In” event, awarding an automatic berth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint at Del Mar this November.


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Here’s a look at the full field for the Speakeasy:

1. Rock the Belles 20/1 – She broke her maiden on debut by 3 1/4 lengths when covering 5 1/2 furlongs on Del Mar’s dirt while in for a $150k tag. Her performance earned her a shot in the 7-furlong Del Mar Debutante (G1), but she finished a well-beaten sixth. Other offspring of Dominus have won 13% of their turf debuts and her dam was a 2-time winner sprinting 5 1/2 furlongs on grass.

2. One Timer 5/2 – He ships west having won a pair of synthetic sprints, first at Arlington Park in a 5-furlong maiden special weight and then at Woodbine in the 5 1/2-furlong Victoria Stakes. Jockey E. T. Baird traveled both to Woodbine and now here to keep the mount and wins 38% with trainer Larry Rivelli, but sire Trappe Shot is just 7% with first-timers on turf and his dam was 0 for 7 on grass.

3. Anmer Hall 8/1 – The first of two entries from trainer Peter Miller is the only runner to have won on debut over grass, which he achieved while rallying from off the pace to win going 5 furlongs at Del Mar. While he loses the jockey that day to his stablemate, Joel Rosario hits at 24% at Santa Anita Park with Miller, an 18% turf sprint winner who captured the recent Del Mar meet training title.

4. Forbidden Kingdom 2/1 – He broke his maiden gate to wire by a hard-fought 1/2-length while going 5 1/2 furlongs on Del Mar’s main track on August 21; the runner-up there won by 6 lengths next time out. His Triple Crown-winning sire American Pharoah produces 13% turf sprint winners (including the 2019 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint champ) and his dam won a Grade 3 dirt sprint at age 2.

5. Miss Alacrity 5/2 – She ships west for trainer Wesley Ward after winning 2 straight on the east coast, including the 5-furlong Colleen Stakes on the Monmouth Park lawn last time out. She was a short price in both starts, so bettors wanting value may not find much here, but her dam was a multiple graded dirt route stakes winner and Ward won the past 2 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprints.

6. Blame It On Rose 20/1 – She needed 3 starts to break her maiden, which she accomplished 2 starts back against $32k claimers in a 5 1/2-furlong sprint on Del Mar’s main track while wearing blinkers for the first time. She backed that up with a second straight multiple-length victory when going 6 furlongs over that course against starter allowance males. This is a major class test for the streaking filly.

7. Time to Party 4/1 – Miller’s second entry missed by 3/4 of a length when debuting in a 5-furlong Del Mar turf sprint on August 1, then made amends by easily wiring foes over the same course in a much quicker final time while adding blinkers. Flavien Prat leaves the stablemate to stay aboard a horse whose career-best Beyer Speed Figure (67) is only fourth-highest in this field and came in defeat.

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