Up With The Birds Entered in G.I Jamaica H.
Category : News
Thu 03/10/2013 - 13:01 EDT
Up With the Birds has spent the summer of his sophomore racing season proving that he’s one of the best three-year-olds racing at Woodbine. In five starts for 2013, the Ontario-bred son of Stormy Atlantic has yet to finish worse than second, and counts among his three wins this year the Black Gold Stakes, the Marine Stakes, and most recently, a 1 ½ mile turf score in the Breeders’ Stakes, the third leg of the Canadian Triple Crown. He also finished a hard-charging second in the Queen’s Plate, missing by a half-length.
Faces Grade I winner in Admiral Kitten
On Saturday he’ll travel from home to take on a tough field of American-breds at Belmont Park in the $500,000 Grade I Jamaica Handicap, at 1 1/8 miles on the turf. He’ll likely face his toughest challenge so far in Admiral Kitten, who goes into the Jamaica off a win in the Grade I Secretariat Stakes. Both horses like to come from off the pace with a strong late run, and so it will be up to Up With the Birds and jockey Cornelio Velazquez to be ready to pounce when Admiral Kitten begins to make his move.
Others in the field have had strong campaigns
Also going to the gate for the Jamaica are expected to be Stormy Len, second to Admiral Kitten in the Secretariat, and third in his last effort, the Grade I Northern Dancer Turf at Woodbine. Notacatbutallama had won three straight before running second in the Grade III Saranac Stakes at Saratoga in early September, and will need to use his tactical speed coming from the widest post. Although also entered in the Hawthorne Derby in Illinois on the same day, if he starts Five Iron would be expected to go the front and play catch me if you can with the rest of the field.
Players trying to look beyond prohibitive favorite Tepin in the September 17 Woodbine Mile will surely have their work cut out for them as the superstar mare tackles seven rivals on the grass.
The second leg of the Canadian Triple Crown goes Tuesday night from Fort Erie race track, where Sir Dudley Digges will try to take another step toward Canadian racing history.
On Sunday, Woodbine will host the $1 million Queen’s Plate Stakes, Canada’s most prestigious race. Restricted to horses foaled in Canada, the classic mile and a quarter contest has drawn a field of thirteen three-year-olds.
A spectacular card of graded stakes action has been assembled for Saturday at Belmont Park and the $1 million Ogden Phipps is shaping up to be one of the most competitive races of the day. The Grade 1 event for fillies and mares will be contested at a mile and a sixteenth.