Big Chief Racing, Rocker O Ranch and Head of Plains Partners’ Exaggerator drew the center post number 7 of the 14-horse G1 Travers field at Saratoga this Saturday. Trained by Keith Desormeaux and ridden by jockey Kent Desormeaux, the sophomore son of Curlin enters the Travers off a strong victory in the Haskell Stakes at Monmouth last month, and was given morning-line favoritism of 3-1 by Travis Stone.
Second choice on the morning line will be Connect, another son of Curlin who was most recently the winner of the listen Curlin Stakes at Saratoga. For trainer Chad Brown, the colt will break from post position 10 and was given morning-line odds of 4-1.
“I’m thrilled with all the post positions,” Brown said at the draw, where he learned of the post positions for each of his three entries in the race. “We’ve got My Man Sam on the inside and the other two near the outside where they can stay out of trouble.
Brown’s other entries include My Man Sam, breaking from post 3, and Gift Box, breaking from post 9.
Third choice on the morning line will be Bob Baffert’s American Freedom; the son of Pulpit is taking the blinkers off after his second-place finish to Exaggerator in the Haskell. At odds of 6-1, American Freedom will break from the 2 post position.
At morning-line odds of 10-1 is Gun Runner for trainer Steve Asmussen. Most recently fifth in the Haskell, Gun Runner will have to overcome the far outside post position (14) if he hopes to win the Travers Stakes.
As always, trainer Eric Guillot was entertaining at the draw ceremony. His charge Laoban, starting with odds of 15-1 on the morning line after his shocking Jim Dandy upset in his last start, will break from the 13-post on Saturday.
“It’s like a marriage, you want to be on the outside looking in,” quipped Guillot.
The full field is listed here in post position order, along with morning-line odds courtesy of Travis Stone.
- Arrogate 10-1 (Mike Smith)
- American Freedom 6-1 (Rafael Bejarano)
- My Man Sam 20-1 (Manny Franco)
- Governor Malibu 12-1 (Joel Rosario)
- Forever d’Oro 30-1 (Luis Saez)
- Anaximandros 50-1 (Leonel Reyes)
- Exaggerator 3-1 (Kent Desormeaux)
- Destin 10-1 (Javier Castellano)
- Gift Box 12-1 (Junior Alvarado)
- Connect 4-1 (John Velazquez)
- Majesto 30-1 (Ricardo Santana, Jr.)
- Creator 15-1 (Irad Ortiz, Jr.)
- Laoban 15-1 (Jose Ortiz)
- Gun Runner 10-1 (Florent Geroux)
*American Freedom races with Blinkers Off, Majesto races with Blinkers On
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