Pin Oak Stable’s Synchrony wins the 26th running of the Grade II Muniz Memorial Handicap at Fair Grounds. Hodges Photography / Amanda Hodges Weir
The Grade 1 $1,000,000 Arlington Million on August 11 is a target spot for Synchrony following his third-place effort in the G1 Old Forester Turf Classic on Churchill Downs’ Kentucky Derby undercard, according to trainer Mike Stidham.
Owned and bred by Pin Oak Stable, the 5-year-old son of Tapit started off his 2018 season with a pair of graded stakes wins at Fair Grounds Race Course and Slots in the G3 Fair Grounds Handicap and G2 Muniz Memorial Handicap.
“I would say we probably will [run him once] before the Million,” trainer Mike Stidham said. “He’s had three hard races off the layoff so we’re not looking to cram a bunch of races in. We’re looking for the better races and to be as good as we can. We haven’t really pinpointed anything but we’ll look over the stakes schedule.”
Guided by jockey Joe Bravo over a yielding turf course at Churchill, Synchrony sat well off of a slow pace led by Camelot Kitten and was hung wide around the final turn. The son of Brownie Points, a multiple stakes winning broodmare by Forest Wildcat, was still able to make up enough ground in the stretch to complete the trifecta behind Yoshida (JPN) and last year’s Arlington Million winner Beach Patrol.
“He settled further back than we liked but made a huge move on the turn,” Stidham said. “When he started to make his run, Joe thought he had legitimate chance to win. He hung down the lane because of the going, but otherwise it went well.”
Synchrony has never finished off the board in his six starts on the grass. In March of last year, he made his turf debut a winning one against allowance company at Fair Grounds and earned two second-place finishes in stakes events on the Mid-Atlantic circuit – the Henry S. Clark Stakes at Laurel Park and the Grade III Red Bank Stakes at Monmouth Park.
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