Grade 1 winner World Approval tops the Dixie S. (G2) on the Preakness undercard. An easy scorer when opening the year in the April 2 Turf Classic at Tampa Bay Downs, the 5-year-old gelding will meet nine rivals in the 1 1/16-mile turf affair at Old Hilltop. Julien Leparoux will ride the expected favorite for Mark Casse.
A neck second in the 2016 Dixie, Grade 1 victor Ring Weekend has plenty of back class but is looking to turn things around for Graham Motion after opening his 6-year-old season with three consecutive unplaced finishes. John Velazquez retakes the mount aboard the gelding.
Grade 2 hero Blacktype was last seen posting a close fifth in the Maker’s 46 Mile (G1) at Keeneland and merits respect here for Christophe Clemen. Jose Ortiz will be up.
Security Risk steps up off a wire-to-wire allowance tally at Keeneland for Shug McGaughey and figures to show speed from the innermost post with Florent Geroux. Projected is also exiting an allowance victory at Keeneland and the French import will make his third start stateside for Chad Brown with a returning Joel Rosario.
Brown will also send out Catapult, runner-up in an April 9 stakes at Aqueduct most recently, and Casse has last-out Belmont allowance winner Conquest Typhoon.
The $150,000 Gallorette (G3) serves as the filly and mare counterpart to the Dixie and Grade 2 queen On Leave makes her 2017 bow in the 1 1/16-mile turf affair. The 4-year-old miss strung together four straight wins before concluding last year with a fourth in the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup (G2) and she is a strong candidate to keep showing more at age 4 for McGaughey. Jose Ortiz retains the mount.
Other contender among the 10 distaffers include Elysea’s World, who exits runner-up efforts in the Hillsborough (G2) and Suwannee River (G3) for Brown; Grade 3 winner Zipessa; local stakes heroine Gone Away; and Danilovna, winner of the April 22 Dahlia at Laurel Park.
A pair of $100,000 turf stakes, the James W. Murphy and The Very One, will also be offered.
Dover Cliffs, winner of the April 1 Cutler Bay at Gulfstream Park in his last outing, heads a field of 13 sophomores in the James Murphy. Multiple stakes victor Cool Arrow is scheduled to make his turf debut and Laurel Futurity winner Caribou Club is eligible to improve off a runner-up effort in his seasonal return.
James Murphy field:
Eleven females will square off in the 5-furlong The Very One and top contenders include Everything Lovely, Most Beautiful, Nite Delite and Pretty Perfection
The Very One field: