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Prevalence Aims for Consistency in Maryland Sprint

Godolphin homebred Prevalence  has not been the most consistent runner, but at his best the 6-year-old Medaglia d’Oro   gelding is capable of sprinting with the country’s best and he enters the $100,000 Maryland Sprint Stakes (G3) May 18 at Pimlico Race Course off of one of those top efforts.

In a six-furlong allowance optional claimer April 6 at Keeneland, Prevalence opened a clear advantage entering the turn and then only added to that margin for a 6 1/2-length score. The effort ended an eight-race skid dating back to April 2022 and he earned his best Equibase Speed Figure (106) since that previous score, a clear victory in the 2022 Commonwealth Stakes (G3) at Keeneland.

While his most recent effort marks a return to top form, Prevalence did race well in this stakes last year—finishing second to Straight No Chaser . Since the allowance race at Keeneland, Prevalence has worked three times at Churchill Downs for trainer Brendan Walsh. Jockey Irad Ortiz Jr., who was aboard for that most recent victory, returns to ride Saturday.

The Maryland Sprint Stakes is part of the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Dozen bonus series. As such, the top three finishers will earn a tiered bonus that can be used toward pre-entry and entry fees for the Breeders’ Cup Sprint (G1) at the World Championships at Del Mar.

One of the expected six rivals awaiting Prevalence is West Point Thoroughbreds’ Jaxon Traveler , a son of Munnings   who counts a victory in the 2022 Maryland Sprint among has three wins and two seconds from six starts on the Pimlico main track.

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“We love to run on Preakness weekend. He got his first big stakes win there, and we love running in Maryland,” said West Point executive vice president Tom Bellhouse. “He’s such a cool horse. He doesn’t win every time, but he always tries real hard.”

Entries: Maryland Sprint S. (G3)

Pimlico Race Course, Saturday, May 18, 2024, Race 8

  • Grade III
  • 6f
  • Dirt
  • $100,000
  • 3 yo’s & up
  • 2:48 PM (local)

Frost Free Heads Chick Lang Field

While the Maryland Sprint is for 3-year-olds and older, Saturday’s Preakness card also features the $200,000 Chick Lang Stakes (G3) for sophomores going six furlongs.

In that expected field of eight, Keene Thoroughbreds’ Frost Free  is favored off back-to-back stakes placings at Oaklawn Park. The son of Frosted   finished third in the Hot Springs Stakes in March and second in the Bachelor Stakes in April after leading both races early.

Trained by Brett Creighton, who is in search of his first graded stakes score, Frost Free for the first time will have the services of multiple Eclipse Award winner Ortiz Jr.

Awaiting Frost Free is a familiar foe in Cats by Five , who finished third in the Bachelor. Three Chimneys Farm’s Cats by Five earned his first stakes placing with that effort. He is trained by Steve Asmussen, who has won the Chick Lang six times, including three of the past four editions. The son of Audible   is scheduled to start from post 2 under Luis Saez.

Entries: Chick Lang S. (G3)

Pimlico Race Course, Saturday, May 18, 2024, Race 6

  • Grade III
  • 6f
  • Dirt
  • $200,000
  • 3 yo
  • 1:28 PM (local)

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