The field is set for the $1 million Haskell, where Nyquist will be trying to re-stake his claim as the top three-year-old in the country.
Ready to Act Just Gets Job Done
If she can ever get to the point where she sticks to the task at hand, Ready to Act could prove to be a graded-stakes contending filly. As it is now, she’s a stakes winner, after taking the $100,000 Sweetest Chant Stakes at Gulfstream on Sunday. But despite the win, trainer Chad Brown admitted afterward he still has some work to do with Ready to Act to get her acting like a professional race horse. Back in July at Woodbine she had the Grade II Natalama Stakes in her grasp, opening on the lead in the stretch when she suddenly ducked in and lost the rider.
Winner loses focus in the lead
Sunday’s performance wasn’t nearly as dramatic or disastrous, but jockey Javier Castellano still had his hands full keeping Ready to Act running in a straight line once she gained the lead on the stretch, as she lugged out the entire way to, and even past, the finish line. That made things a lot closer than they should have been, with Ready to Act getting a half-length victory, when the winning margin could have been two or three lengths. Pacesetter Party Now held on for second, while Room Service rallied for third.
Second choice Party Now holds on
Breaking from the inside post, Ready to Act settled on the rail, content to run a couple lengths off the lead maintained from the gate by Party Now, who was kept company through the first three-quarters by Lemon Point. Together they ran through fairly easy fractions of 24.81 and 49.31 through the first half-mile of the one-mile race. Castellano began to nudge Ready to Act forward into the far turn, and by the time they straightened for home, she had gained the lead. That’s when Castellano’s real work began, as Ready to Act kept her head turned to the grandstand all the way to the finish.
On Sunday at Monmouth Park, the featured race is the $300,000 United Nations Stakes. Scheduled to be run at a mile and three-eighths on the turf, the Grade 1 event has drawn a field of ten colts and geldings.
On Sunday at Monmouth Park, the featured race is the $150,000 Pegasus Stakes, a key prep race for the Haskell Invitational (G1). The Grade 3 event will be contested at a mile and a sixteenth and has drawn a field of seven three-year-olds.