The Springboard Mile, Remington’s Park feature event of the season, is set for this Sunday evening, with a local post time of 7:52 PM CT. Once again this year, the contest will serve as a Kentucky Derby prep race, with 10 Derby points awarded to the winner, 4 for second, 2 for third, and 1 for fourth. The Springboard Mile always manages to draw a full field, with this year being no different, as 11 horses will run when the gates open. The race shares the card with 5 other stakes events, including the $100,000 Trapeze Stakes for 2-year-old fillies.
Headlining this year’s field will be New York shipper Epic Dreamer, who has been installed at the 8/5 morning line favorite. The Orb colt has raced twice at Belmont Park, with a second place finish on debut, before breaking his maiden going 1 1/16 miles on the dirt on October 26th. Javier Castellano had the mount in his last start, while assuming riding duties again today. They will break from the rail in post 1.
Hall of Fame trainer and Remington Park training champion Steve Asmussen has entered an eye-popping five horses into the event. The highlight of his charge is lead by local hero Longe Range Toddy and New York bred stakes winners Bankit. Long Range Toddy was sharp in his maiden score at a mile at Remington Park, before then winning the 7-furlong Clever Trevor Stakes by a length. Local jockey Richard Earmia will have the mount. Bankit has done all his running in New York, where he won the $250,000 Sleepy Hallow Stakes in his last start. Steve Asmussen’s go to rider, Ricardo Santana Jr., will come in for the mount.
Asmussen’s other three entries are: Tobacco Road, Tone Broke, and Kaziranga. Tobacco Road is the most well known of the three, after winning the Ellis Park Juvenile in the summer. Recently, he was third in the Clever Trevor Stakes. Tone Broke comes into this race off a maiden special weight and allowance win at Remington Park. Finally, Kaziranga broke his maiden at Remington Park two starts back, before losing to Tone Broke last time out in that before mentioned allowance event.
The full field for the $400,000 Remington Springboard Mile from the rail out includes: Epic Dreamer, Kaziranga, Marquee Prince, Six Shooter, Long Range Toddy, Tone Broke, Dobbins G, Bankit, Tobacco Road, Dunph, and D Toz.
#1 Epic Dreamer – Last year Greyvitos shipped to Remington Park to win this race from the west coast, now this year Epic Dreamer will try to ship in and win from the east coast. Epic Dreamer was second on debut; however, he lost to Vekoma, who came back to win the Grade 3 Nashua Stakes at Aqueduct, while earning an eye-catching 99 beyer speed figure. Epic Dreamer returned last time out to win a maiden special weight at Belmont Park, where he was victorious by 2 1/2 lengths going 1 1/16 miles. His speed figures stand out over the rest of this field, no matter what number you like to use. If he can overcome the rail draw, he should be tough to beat.
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#5 Long Range Toddy – For my money, this is the best Steve Asmussen horse of his 5 entries, while he also is a great morning line price of 12-1. At that price he is an absolute must play. After a fast closing debut to finish fourth, Long Range Toddy broke his maiden going a mile in blowout fashion next time out, before returning last time out to win the Clever Trevor Stakes. His running style sets up well for this race, with the pace looking to be fairly swift on paper. The local Remington Park horse could prove to be a handful for those shipping in for the race.
#8 Bankit – We will see if this New York bred can step up into open company, while leaving New York for the green pastures of Oklahoma. He was won two of five starts in New York, including the $250,000 Sleepy Hallow Staes last time out at Belmont Park. The win was an impressive one as well, with him wining by over 5-lengths. Steve Asmussen’s go to rider Ricardo Santana Jr. is in to ride, which is another good sign for this son of Central Banker. His early speed will play a major factor on a track that has been favoring front-runners all week long.
#9 Tobacco Road – He got hot over the summer at Ellis Park with a maiden special weight win, followed by a victory in the $75,000 Ellis Park Juvenile. After that performance, he tried tougher races, which haven’t gone quiet as well. He was fourth in the Grade 3 Iroquois Stakes, before finishing ninth two races back in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Futurity at Keeneland. Trainer Steve Asmussen dropped him down in class last time out, where he finished third in a the Clever Trevor Stakes here at Remington Park. He has some class to rely on here, which is good, yet hitting the board might be his ceiling.
#10 Dunph – After two straight blowout victories, this horse gave the Grade 2 Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes a chance, but disappointed in a distant 9th place finish. The Jockey Club was his first start going two-turns, while also making his first start over a sloppy race track. It is unclear which one of those aspects were the cause of his poor effort. There is no doubt the horse has a lot of ability, which makes him dangerous here. He might run much better if the track is fast on Sunday.
#4 Six Shooter – A winner of two out of his last 3 races, Six Shooter ships into Remington Park from Churchill Downs with a shot. In his last start, he stalked the early pace in a tough allowance race, before pouncing down the lane to win the race with ease at a big price of 13-1. That allowance win came at a mile as well, which is obviously a good sign for this race. He might be a cut below the top horses in here; however, he is an interesting horse to throw in underneath.
#3 Marquee Prince – The connections alone make this horse dangerous, especially at a track like Remington Park. When Brad Cox and Florent Geroux team up good things usually happen. Marquee Prince has been a mixed bag so far. He broke his maiden in the mud at Indiana Grand, before winning an allowance at Churchill Downs on the turf. After that win, he moved back to the dirt in the $100,000 Street Sense Stakes, where he was a well-beaten fifth to the Bob Baffert trained Improbable. The class of this horse is evident; however, his overall talent is still in question. If the price is right he will be worth a play, though.
#11 D Toz – This horse has won two straight races, both coming at Remington Park. However, they both came against Oklahoma bred company, which means this is going to be a big step up for him today. The wins over the track are a positive, though.
#6 Tone Broke – There is no doubt this horse is a little dangerous to throw out, after two straight wins over the track for Steve Asmussen. Those races came back a tad slow from a speed figure standpoint, though, which means he must step up a bit today to have a shot.
#2 Kaziranga – If I’m throwing out Tone Broke, it makes logical sense to throw out Kaziranga, who was second to Tone Broke last time out. Both of these Asmussen runners look to be developing, though, so keep an eye out for them in the future.
#7 Dobbins G – After four straight losses, he broke his maiden two starts back in a maiden special weight for Oklahoma breds at Remington Park. Last time out, he was third in the $75,000 Don C. McNeill Stakes, which was also for state bred horses. He must step it up in a major way to compete with this group.
We like Epic Dreamer on top, but how are we playing the race? Try our PREMIUM PICKS that include exacta, trifecta, and multi-race wager suggestions along with our most likely winner and best value play from each day.