June 19, 2024

Mystic Guide gets season-opening test in Razorback

Mystic Guide
Mystic Guide wins the Jim Dandy Stakes (Coglianese Photos/Joe Labozzetta)

Razorback H. (G3) — Race 7 (6:10 p.m. ET)

Two of Godolphin’s leading four-year-olds will make their respective season debuts on Saturday. With Maxfield penciled in for the Mineshaft (G3) at Fair Grounds, Mystic Guide will represent the stable in the more lucrative $600,000 Razorback H. (G3) at Oaklawn Park.

Victorious in the Jim Dandy (G2) last September, Mystic Guide ran a strong race in defeat in his season finale, finishing three parts of a length behind fellow sophomore Happy Saver in the Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1). The son of Ghostzapper has made just six starts, winning twice and placing in the other four.

The small but select field for the 1 1/16-mile Razorback also includes multiple graded stakes winner Owendale, who make his first outing since placing in the Clark (G1) for a second time at Churchill Downs on Nov. 27. Trainer Brad Cox has also entered his 2020 Louisiana Derby (G2) winner Wells Bayou, third in his recent comeback in the Louisiana (G3) but cross-entered in the Mineshaft.

Coastal Defense, who ran fourth in the Clark, never got going in last month’s Pegasus World Cup (G1) and wound up finishing sixth to Knicks Go. However, the late-developing son of Curlin will add blinkers for the Razorback and is joined by fellow Dale Romans trainee Mr Freeze, a multiple Grade 2 winner last year who looks to rebound from a poor showing in the Pegasus World Cup.

The field is rounded out by Silver Prospector, who captured the 2020 Southwest (G3) and was most recently fifth in the Louisiana, and Long Range Toddy, winless since taking a division of the 2019 Rebel (G2).

Dixie Belle S. — Race 6 (5:09 p.m. ET)

The field for the $150,000 Dixie Belle S., for three-year-old fillies at six furlongs, also came up small. The field of six includes the Steve Asmussen-trained Abrogate, who’s won both of her previous starts, including a Jan. 24 entry-level allowance over the track and distance.

The Brad Cox-trained Goin’ Good also enters 2-for-2, but will be trying dirt for the first time following wins on the grass at Indiana Grand and Fair Grounds. Windmill, a four-length debut winner in quick time for Larry Jones, should also attract support.

Among the stakes veterans in the lineup are Mariah’s Princess, a last-out second in the Letellier Memorial at Fair Grounds, and Ava’s Grace, a distant third in the Adirondack (G2) when last seen in August.