Uncontested will target shorter races after fading in the final quarter-mile to finish eighth in Saturday’s G2 Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park, trainer Wayne Catalano said Sunday morning. Following a record-setting wire-to-wire victory in the Smarty Jones Stakes, the son of Tiz Wonderful finished sixth as the Southwest favorite after surrendering the lead turning for home.
Both the Southwest and Rebel, in which Uncontested maintained a one-length lead through a :47.04 half-mile, were at 1 1/16 miles.
“I told Harry before the race that the jury is still out,” Catalano said, referring to co-owner Harry Rosenblum. “The verdict is in, I guess. He had the perfect setup yesterday. He went slower, he was comfortable, but he couldn’t quite get the distance.”
Catalano said Uncontested looked fine Sunday morning.
Rosenblum said he believes 7 furlongs is Uncontested’s optimum distance and the colt will be considered for summer sprint races like the Woody Stephens Stakes at Belmont Park and King’s Bishop Stakes at Saratoga. The colt has made his last four starts around two turns (a mile or 1 1/16 miles).
In his only sprint start, Uncontested teased Keeneland‘s 6 ½-furlong track in a six-length debut score Oct. 19.
Untrapped, runner-up in the Oct. 19 race, finished third in the Rebel.
New to the Paulick Report? Click here to sign up for our daily email newsletter to keep up on this and other stories happening in the Thoroughbred industry.
Copyright © 2017 Paulick Report.