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Sugar Bowl Preview: Gagetown Steps Up To Stakes Level
Gagetown breaking his maiden (Credit: Coady Photography)

Sugar Bowl Preview: Gagetown Steps Up To Stakes Level

NEW ORLEANS, LA – Fresh off a sharp maiden-breaking debut, Rupp Racing’s Gagetown steps up to the stakes level for Saturday’s $75,000 Sugar Bowl at Fair Grounds.

The Sugar Bowl is a 6-furlong dirt sprint restricted to juvenile horses. This year’s edition is the sixth event on a 13-race card and has a local post time of 2:27 PM.

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Here’s a look at the full field for the Sugar Bowl:

1. Quick Tempo 5/2 – The only entry with multiple wins already, he won his career debut over the Arlington Park synthetic and beat first-level allowance foes on the Parx dirt in October. He earned an 87 Beyer Speed Figure for that effort and backed it up with an 86 while finishing second in the Nyquist Stakes behind Kentucky Derby (G1) prospect Highly Motivated.

2. Tate 4/1 – He broke his maiden on debut while going this distance at Delaware Park in August but failed to repeat his success against first-level allowance runners in his next 2 starts. Still, as could be expected with any Godolphin homebred, he’s bred with plenty of class on both sides of his pedigree. He’s also a half-brother to multiple Grade 3 winner Shared Sense.

3. Sermononthemount 12/1 – He steps up to the stakes level after breaking his maiden on debut in a 5-furlong dash over a sloppy Delta Downs main track on December 2. The closing kick that he displayed to rally from 10 lengths back in last and find victory should suit him well on the long Fair Grounds stretch if jockey Ricardo Santana Jr. times his move at the right time.

4. Warlock Doc 12/1 – He was kissed into graduating his debut after crossing second by a head behind a horse who was later disqualified from victory after he drifted into Warlock Doc late. He’s remained unraced since that July 21 event at Lone Star Park, but trainer Danny Pish knows how to keep a winning horse in shape; he’s repeated at a 19% rate with last-out winners.

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5. Gagetown 3/1 – He showed maturity beyond his years when he split the leaders in mid-stretch before drawing away to win his debut (a 6-furlong dirt sprint at Churchill Downs) by 2 lengths. Brad Cox is the hottest trainer in the country right now, and with Cox’s first-call rider Florent Geroux keeping the mount for the second straight start, this colt’s a major threat.

6. Twilight Blue 3/1 – He returns to the same distance over which he broke his maiden by 2 lengths at Churchill Downs in his second career start, defeating a next-out maiden-breaker in the process. He was second last time out while going 7 furlongs under the Twin Spires and keeps Brian Hernandez Jr., the only jockey he’s ever known, aboard for his fourth gate appearance.

7. Crime Spree 12/1 – He broke his maiden by a hard-fought head while going 5 1/2 furlongs at Louisiana Downs in September but struggled mightily when he stretched out to route in the 1 1/16-mile Street Sense Stakes. He should be sharper as he cuts back to sprinting and retains the services of jockey Mitchell Murrill, who’s known for piloting longshots to victory.

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