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February 23, 2020

NOMINATIONS RELEASED FOR FIVE FESTIVAL DAY 40 STAKES ON MARCH 7

by Mike Henry
Top three from Grade III Sam F. Davis nominated to Grade II, $400,000 Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby on March 7, plus impressive potential newcomers; five stakes draw a total of 191 nominations.

Sole Volante, Independence Hall and Ajaaweed, the top three finishers in the Grade III Sam F. Davis Stakes on Feb. 8, are among 41 3-year-olds nominated to the 40th running of the Grade II, $400,000 Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby, the showcase event on the March 7 Festival Day card at Tampa Bay Downs.

The announcement was made earlier today by the track’s Stakes Coordinator, Gerry Stanislawzyk.

Sole Volante, a gelding owned by Reeves Thoroughbred Racing, Andie Biancone and Limelight Stables Corp. and trained by Patrick Biancone, improved to 3-for-4 with his upset victory in the Sam F. Davis, vaulting to the No. 2 spot in racing journalist Steve Haskin’s “Derby Dozen” Presented by Shadwell Farm, behind Tiz the Law.

It was the first loss in four starts for Independence Hall, who is owned by Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners, Twin Creeks Racing Stables and Kathleen and Robert N. Verratti and trained by Michael Trombetta. He is in the No. 7 spot on the “Derby Dozen.”

The nominations also include the TVG Breeders’ Cup Juvenile winner on Nov. 1 at Santa Anita, trainer Peter Eurton’s Storm the Court; trainer Dale Romans’ well-regarded Dennis’ Moment, who has not started since stumbling at the start of the TVG Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, losing all chance; Gouverneur Morris, an impressive allowance/optional claiming race winner here on Feb. 14, from the barn of Todd Pletcher; Grade II Remsen Stakes winner Shotski; Grade III Swale Stakes winner Mischevious Alex; and Pasco Stakes winner Liam’s Lucky Charm.

The Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby, contested at a distance of a mile-and-a-sixteenth on the main track, is a “Road to the Kentucky Derby” points race, with the top four finishers earning 50-20-10-5 points toward qualifying for a position in the May 2 Run for the Roses at Churchill Downs.

Based on those awards, the Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby winner is a virtual lock to be among the 20 Kentucky Derby starters if his connections stay on that path, and the runner-up is highly likely to qualify.

Here is the link to the nominations for the Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby, followed by a link containing their past-performance information:

http://www.equibase.com/premium/eqbHorsemenAreaDownloadAction.cfm?sn=SN-TAM-20200307-559609

http://www.equibase.com/premium/eqbHorsemenAreaDownloadAction.cfm?sn=SNPP-TAM-20200307-559609

The Festival Day program includes five stakes, four of them graded, worth total purse money of $1-million.

The 22nd edition of the Grade II, $225,000 Hillsborough Stakes, for fillies and mares 4-years-old-and-upward at a mile-and-an-eighth on the turf, has attracted 40 nominations, headed by the top two finishers in the Grade III Lambholm South Endeavour Stakes here on the turf on Feb. 8: Jehozacat and Altea.

The 5-year-old Jehozacat is trained by Arnaud Delacour, while Chad Brown trains 5-year-old Altea.

Also nominated to the Hillsborough are 4-year-old Point of Honor, last year’s Suncoast Stakes and Grade II Black-Eyed Susan Stakes winner, trained by George Weaver, and Grade I E. P. Taylor Stakes winner and career millionaire Starship Jubilee, trainer Kevin Attard’s 7-year-old mare.

Here is the link to the nominations for the Hillsborough Stakes, followed by a link containing their past-performance information:

http://www.equibase.com/premium/eqbHorsemenAreaDownloadAction.cfm?sn=SN-TAM-20200307-559595

http://www.equibase.com/premium/eqbHorsemenAreaDownloadAction.cfm?sn=SN-TAM-20200307-559595

The 37th running of the Grade III, $200,000 Florida Oaks for 3-year-old fillies at a mile-and-a-sixteenth on the turf closed with 33 nominations. The collection of female sophomore talent includes unbeaten (4-for-4), multiple-Grade III turf winner Alms, trained by Michael Stidham, and her stakes-winning stablemate Micheline, who won an allowance/optional claiming race here on Dec. 20.

Also nominated are Grade I Natalma Stakes winner Abscond, trained by Eddie Kenneally; Natalma Stakes runner-up Walk In Marrakesh, conditioned by Ignacio Correas, IV; Michael Tromebtta’s undefeated (4-for-4) multiple-stakes winner New York Groove; and The Goddess Lyssa, who has won both career starts at Tampa Bay Downs, from the barn of leading trainer Gerald Bennett.

Here is the link to the nominations for the Florida Oaks, followed by a link containing their past-performance information:

http://www.equibase.com/premium/eqbHorsemenAreaDownloadAction.cfm?sn=SN-TAM-20200307-559613

http://www.equibase.com/premium/eqbHorsemenAreaDownloadAction.cfm?sn=SNPP-TAM-20200307-559613

The 29th edition of the Grade III, $100,000 Challenger Stakes, for horses 4-years-old-and-upward at a mile-and-a-sixteenth on the main track, has attracted 31 nominations, including trainer Barbara Minshall’s Admiralty Pier, a 5-year-old gelding who won the Grade III Tampa Bay Stakes here on the turf on Feb. 8, and last year’s Challenger runner-up, trainer John P. Terranova, II’s 6-year-old Killybegs Captain, who captured the Pelican Stakes here on Feb. 15.

Also nominated are Grade III-winning 6-year-old gelding No Dozing, from the barn of Arnaud Delacour; Grade III-winning 6-year-old Phat Man, trained by Kent Sweezey; Grade II winner Signalman, trained by Ken McPeek; and the 8-year-old War Story, a career earned of more than $3.2-million who won the 2018 Challenger, trained by Elizabeth Dobles.

Trainer Todd Pletcher, who has won the Challenger four times, has nominated five horses to this year’s running, headed by stakes-winning 5-year-old American Tattoo, multiple stakes-winning 4-year-old colt King for a Day and stakes-winning 4-year-old colt Zenden.

This is the first year for the Challenger Stakes to be graded.

Here is the link to the nominations for the Challenger Stakes, followed by a link containing their past-performance information:

http://www.equibase.com/premium/eqbHorsemenAreaDownloadAction.cfm?sn=SN-TAM-20200307-559599

http://www.equibase.com/premium/eqbHorsemenAreaDownloadAction.cfm?sn=SNPP-TAM-20200307-559599

The 14th edition of the $75,000 Columbia Stakes, for 3-year-olds going a mile on the turf, drew 46 nominations. The nominees include trainer Chad Brown’s Grade I Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Presented by Coolmore America winner, Structor; trainer George “Rusty” Arnold, II’s Gear Jockey, still a maiden but third in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf and the Grade III Dixiana Bourbon Stakes last year; Zaino Boys, who won the Inaugural Stakes here on Dec. 7, trained by Bobby Raymond; and multiple graded stakes-placed Vitalogy, trained by Brendan Walsh.

Here is the link to the nominations for the Columbia Stakes, followed by a link containing their past-performance information:

http://www.equibase.com/premium/eqbHorsemenAreaDownloadAction.cfm?sn=SN-TAM-20200307-559582

http://www.equibase.com/premium/eqbHorsemenAreaDownloadAction.cfm?sn=SNPP-TAM-20200307-559582

The current top 20 on the “Road to the Kentucky Derby” with their total points are as follows (ties are broken by non-restricted stakes earnings):

  1. Mr. Monomoy, 52; 2. Modernist, 50; 3. Enforceable, 33; 4. Storm the Court, 22; 5. Tiz the Law, 22; 6. Silver Prospector, 21; 7. Thousand Words, 20; 8. Major Fed, 20; 9. Silver State, 14; 10. Independence Hall, 14; 11. Shotski, 14; 12. Azul Coast, 14; 13. Shoplifted, 13; 14. Anneau d’Or, 12; 15. Maxfield, 10; 16. Eight Rings, 10; 17. Sole Volante, 10; 18. Dennis’ Moment, 10; 19. Max Player, 10; 20. Gold Street, 10.

Around the oval. In today’s featured sixth race, the Cody’s Original Roadhouse Race of the Week, Super Twenty Five fought back after giving up the lead in the stretch to post a head victory from Sweet Daddio. Antonio Gallardo rode the victorious 4-year-old filly, who is owned by Lucio Tucci and trained by Joan Scott.

Thoroughbred racing at Tampa Bay Downs continues Wednesday with a nine-race card beginning at 12:40 p.m. Tampa Bay Downs races each Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday through May 3, with the exception of Easter Sunday, April 12, when the track is closed.

Otherwise, Tampa Bay Downs is open every day for simulcast wagering, no-limits action and tournament play in The Silks Poker Room and golf fun and instruction at The Downs Golf Practice Facility.