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Apr 11, 2014

Wide open Blue Grass Stakes attracts 14

By: SPORTS NETWORK


Lexington, KY (SportsNetwork.com) - A full field of 14 3-year-olds has been entered for Saturday's 90th Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland Racecourse.

The $750,000, 1 1/8-mile race offers a total of 170 points as part of the Kentucky Derby points system. The winner acquires 100 points toward a spot in the 20-horse field for the Run for the Roses on May 3.

Bobby's Kitten, trained by Chad Brown, has been made the 3-1 morning line favorite by oddsmaker Mike Battalgia. The colt will be ridden by Javier Castellano from post 5 and will be making his first start on the main track.

Owned by Ken and Sarah Ramsey, Bobby's Kitten was third in last year's Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf at Santa Anita. He won the Pilgrim over Belmont Park's turf course and captured his 2014 debut at Tampa Bay Downs on March 9. Bobby's Kitten has banked $307,100 with three wins and two thirds in five starts. The Ramseys also own Louisiana Derby winner Vicar's in Trouble.

Trainer Dale Romans will start Medal Count in the Blue Grass just eight days after the colt won Keeneland's Transylvania Stakes. Owned by Spendthrift Farm, Medal Count is the 9-2 second pick and will start from post 13 with Robby Albarado in the saddle.

"He is versatile. He ran well on the Polytrack here in the fall (fifth in the Bourbon Stakes)," Romans said after winning the Transylvania. "This is a really good horse. He's been one of my favorites all along. He's a good horse, and he showed the performance we were expecting."

Medal Count won the Transylvania on Keeneland's synthetic main track after the race was moved off the turf course because of overnight and morning rain.

"I rode him in the fall here (in the Bourbon), and he had so much trouble," Albarado said. "He was only beaten 2 (1/4) lengths then. Dale had high expectations. I guess as an older horse he's shown everything that Dale thought about him."

He finished 11th to New Year's Day in last year's Breeders' Cup Juvenile and fifth to Wildcat Red in the Fountain of Youth Stakes on Feb 22 at Gulfstream Park. Medal Count has earned $111,600 with wins in half of his six career starts.

The 5-1 third choice is grass runner Gala Award, trained by Todd Pletcher for Coolmore/Ashford Stud. The colt will be ridden by John Velazquez from the far outside post. Pletcher also trains Florida Derby winner Constitution.

Gala Award has never raced on anything but grass and is coming off a victory in Gulfstream Park's Palm Beach Stakes on March 1. With two wins in three starts, Gala Award has earned $123,180.

Here is the Blue Grass field in post position order: Asserting Bear, Emma- Jayne Wilson, 15-1; Extrasexyhipster, Julian Pimental, 15-1; Pablo Del Monte, Victor Espinoza, 12-1; Harry's Holiday, Rosie Napravnik, 10-1; Bobby's Kitten, Javier Castellano, 3-1; Coltimus Prime, Alan Garcia, 20-1; Casiguapo, Rajiv Maragh, 30-1; Dance With Fate, Corey Nakatani, 12-1; Big Bazinga, Brian Hernandez Jr., 20-1; So Lonesome, Joe Rocco Jr., 50-1; Coastline, Stewart Elliott, 8-1; Vinceremos, Edgar Prado, 8-1; Medal Count, Robby Albarado, 9-2 and Gala Award, John Velazquez, 5-1. The also eligible is Divine Oath.

The approximate post time for the Blue Grass will be 5:45 p.m. ET.



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