Photo: Eclipse Sportswire
Cash is King and LC Racing’s Grade 2 winner Maximus Mischief, undefeated in three starts as a 2-year-old, tops 24 horses nominated to the Grade 2, $350,000 Fasig-Tipton Holy Bull on Saturday, Feb. 2, at Gulfstream Park.
Following the one-mile Mucho Macho Man Stakes Jan. 5, the 30th running of the 1 1/16-mile Holy Bull for 3-year-olds is the next step on Gulfstream’s road to the 2019 Kentucky Derby and headlines a program of five graded-stakes for sophomores worth $850,000 in purses.
Maximus Mischief romped in his first two starts of 2018, winning by a combined 14 3/4 lengths at Parx, where trainer Robert E. ‘Butch’ Reid is based. He stepped up and stretched out to 1 1/8 miles in the Remsen (G2) Dec. 1 at Aqueduct, beating his six rivals by 2 1/4 lengths.
Since the Remsen, Maximus Mischief has had two works this month over Gulfstream’s main track, the most recent a five-furlong breeze in 58.02 seconds Jan. 19, fastest of 57 horses.
“He’ll have one more breeze over the weekend, and he should be all set up for next week’s race,” Reid said of the Into Mischief colt. “I know it’s going to be crazy, but I think I want to get it in Saturday because it looks like rain on Sunday. We’re kind of flexible toward the weekend but if we can fit it in on Saturday, we’re going to try to do that.”
Also prominent among Holy Bull nominees are Mucho Macho Man winner Mihos; Mike Maker-trained stakes winners Dunph and Henley’s Joy, the latter Grade 3-placed on turf; 2018 Tremont Stakes winner Our Braintrust, recently purchased by Gary Barber and moved to trainer Mark Casse; Federal Case, unbeaten in two starts for trainer Todd Pletcher; stakes winners Five Star General, Garter and Tie, Gladiator King and Well Defined; and recent Gulfstream maiden winners Come On Gerry, Fed Fever, Global Campaign and High Crime.
Maximus Mischief, Our Braintrust and Well Defined are also among 28 horses nominated to the 34th running of the $150,000 Swale (G3), a seven-furlong sprint, along with 2018 Sanford (G2) winner and Grade 1-placed Call Paul, Limehouse Stakes winner Seismic Jolt and Jackson, winner of the Juvenile Sprint at Gulfstream Park West.
Sophomore fillies will travel seven furlongs in the $150,000 Forward Gal (G3), which attracted 21 nominees, led by Fancy Dress Party and Bell’s the One, both undefeated in three starts, and fellow stakes winners Bye Bye J, Fashion Faux Pas, Into Trouble and Needs Supervision.
Current, winner of the 1 1/16-mile Bourbon (G3) last fall at Keeneland, and Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1) third-place finisher Somelikeithotbrown top 27 horses nominated to the $100,000 Dania Beach at one mile on the grass. Henley’s Joy, beaten a nose when second in the Bourbon, and fellow stakes winners Casa Creed, Louder Than Bombs, Mr Wrench It and My Silencer are also nominated.
Stellar Agent, third in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1) Nov. 2; stakes winners A Bit Special, Boxwood, Decorated Ace and Regal Glory; and undefeated Hard Legacy, an optional claiming allowance winner Dec. 23 at Gulfstream, are among 24 nominees to the $100,000 Sweetest Chant (G3) for 3-year-old fillies going one mile on the grass.