After a one-day hiatus, we get back to Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Florida for a $75,000 allowance optional claiming race (purse: $51,000) for 3-year-olds over seven furlongs on the dirt. The field of 6 will go to gate for race 7 on the 10-race card with an approximate post time of 3:30 p.m. ET.
#6, Peruvian Boy, John Velazquez, 7-2
He has raced in back-to-back stakes races with a third-place finish in his last, the Limehouse Stakes at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 4, so he is coming back 11 days later, which could mean a good thing. He is looking for his first win since a maiden special weight in his second career start at Arlington back on July 13. He also placed fourth a race after in the Grade 2 Saratoga Special Stakes on Aug. 10. I like the fact he is coming back sooner than later and with John Velazquez aboard for trainer Antonio Sano, I like even better. The pick.
#4, Premier Star, Irad Ortiz, Jr., 6-5
The morning-line favorite has one career start with one win. He won a maiden special weight race here on Dec. 8 by 1 ¾ lengths as the favorite. Irad Ortiz, Jr. is aboard for trainer Jorge Navarro and he should be there right at the end. Runner-up.
#2, Americanus, Javier Castellano, 4-1
He won his first career start in a maiden special weight race at Belmont Park on Sept. 28 by 1 ¼ lengths as the fifth betting choice, so there was a lot to like right off the bat. Then on Nov. 3, came back and finished a poor eighth in the Grade 3 Nashua Stakes at Aqueduct on Nov. 3. Not sure why the quick jump to a graded stakes race, but he is back in familiar territory and should improve, especially with Javier Castellano in the saddle for trainer Mark Hennig. Contender.
#5, Calibrator, Edgar Zayas, 6-1
He won a maidens special weight race in his debut at The Meadowlands on Oct. 12 by a ½ length as the third choice. In his next and last start, travelled to Gulfstream Park and finished ninth in the Pulpit Stakes on Nov. 30. He does have a race over this surface, so we shall see. Edgar Zayas has the mount for trainer Jorge Navarro. In the mix.
By Lou Monaco