Saturday's Racing Picks 12/21: Gulfstream Park
We like the weather so much that we are staying right here at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Florida for the $100,000 Grade 3 Mr. Prospector Stakes for 3-year-olds and up over seven furlongs on the dirt.
The field of 6 will go to gate for race 10 on the 11-race card with an approximate post time of 4:30 p.m. ET.
#3, X Y Jet, Emisael Jaramillo, 7-5
The big question for X Y Jet, who won the 2015 and 2017 Mr. Prospector, is whether he can handle the seven furlong distance. Both of the years he won the Mr. P were at six furlongs. X Y Jet has two second-place finishes in three prior starts at seven furlongs. According to trainer Jorge Navarro, he has been training great and will have Emisael Jaramillo in the saddle. This will be his 26th career start (12-7-2) and his fourth this year (2-0-0), as he looks to add on to his over $3-million earnings total. The pick.
#2, Imperial Hint, Javier Castellano, 1-1
The even-money morning line favorites has finished in the money in eight straights races, including seven graded stakes and highlighted by two straight Grade 1 victories in the Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap at Saratoga (7/27) and his last, a nose win over Firenze Fire in the Vosburgh Stakes at Belmont Park on Sept. 28. His last race was supposed to be on Nov. 2, but was a morning scratch of the Breeders’ Cup Sprint at Santa Anita Park due to a minor foot issue. Javier Castellano is back on the mount for trainer Luis Carvajal, Jr. A lot of questions with the comeback from the injury, the distance, but he has obvious solid experience in graded events, so we shall see. Just too many questions for me. Runner-up.
#6, Diamond Oops, Julien Leparoux, 10-1
Diamond Oops had three straight top two finishes (1-2) prior to his last start, an eighth-place finish in the Big Ass Fans Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile at Santa Anita on Nov. 2. This will be his 12th career start (4-2-1) and his seventh this year (1-2-1). Julien Leparoux will be back in the saddle for the fifth straight start for trainer Patrick Biancone. You know Leparoux wants to make up for his last performance in the BC and the distance might suit Diamond Oops for a rebound. Contender.
#5, Lasting Legacy, Irad Ortiz, Jr., 6-1
A perfect 3-for-3 this year for trainer Jason Servis including a 1 ½ length victory in his last, ironically the six-furlong Monmouth Park Mr. Prospector Stakes on Sept. 28. You certainly can’t go wrong with Irad Ortiz, Jr. in the reins and at 6-1 odds without having a blemish this year; it’s certainly worth a shot. This will be his first start at Gulfstream Park. In the mix.
By Lou Monaco