The first Saturday of the New Year brings us to Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Florida for the $100,000 Muchoooooooo Machooooooo Mannnnnnn Stakes for 3-year-olds over one mile on the dirt. The field of 7 will go to gate for race 10 on the 11-race card with an approximate post time of 4:30 p.m. ET.
#1, South Bend, Julien Leparoux, 9-2
The perfect name for the hometown of my favorite college football team, South Bend won three of four starts in 2019, including two at Churchill Downs. However, in his last in his first graded stakes appearance, he finished a disappointing sixth on a wet track in the Grade 2 Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes at Churchill Downs on Nov. 30. This will be his first start at Gulfstream with Julien Leparoux in the saddle for trainer Stanley Hough. The pick.
#4, As Seen On Tv, Paco Lopez, 5-2
As Seen On Tv won two of his three starts in 2019, including his last by 1 ½ lengths as the favorite in the Juvenile Sprint Stakes at Gulfstream Park West on Nov. 9. Paco Lopez is aboard for trainer Kelly Breen. This Monmouth Park-duo will certainly be in the thick of it come the finish line. Runner-up.
#2, Chance It, Tyler Gaffalione, 9-5
Chance It has left nothing to chance, winning three of his last four starts, including his last in the FTBOA Florida Sire In Reality Stakes at Gulfstream Park on Sept. 28. All five of his starts have come here (3-2-0), so you know he loves the surface. Tyler Gaffalione has the mount for trainer Saffie Joseph. Contender.
#7, Inter Miami, Irad Ortiz, Jr., 6-1
Exactly one month from today, Inter Miami won by a whopping 8 ½ lengths going away in his debut as the third choice in a maiden claiming race here on Dec. 4. Irad Ortiz, Jr. returns for the second straight mount for trainer Alexis Delgado. Will he bounce? I don’t think so. I think there still is plenty in the tank and if you get anywhere near his morning line odds with Ortiz up, buck up. In the mix.
By Lou Monaco