Gulfstream Park Barn Notes: 43 Nominated to the G2 Fountain of Youth Stakes on March 2

(Signalman at Churchill Downs before the 2018 Breeders’ Cup / Photo by Holly M. Smith)

From the Gulfstream Park Media Team:

Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) show finisher Signalman, unraced since winning the Kentucky Jockey Club (G2) in his 2-year-old finale, and 2018 Remsen (G2) winner Maximus Mischief are among 43 sophomores nominated to the $400,000 Fountain of Youth (G2) Saturday, March 2 at Gulfstream Park.

The 73rd running of the 1 1/16-mile Fountain of Youth – the next step on the road to the $1 million Florida Derby (G1) March 30 – headlines a spectacular card featuring nine stakes, all graded, worth $1.62 million in purses.

Signalman was second to Knicks Go in the Breeders’ Futurity (G1) in his stakes debut last fall, running third to 2-year-old champion Game Winner in the Juvenile and taking the Kentucky Jockey Club by a neck Nov. 24 – all at 1 1/16 miles – for trainer Ken McPeek. Stablemate Harvey Wallbanger, 29-1 upset winner of the Fasig-Tipton Holy Bull (G2) Feb. 2, is nominated but expected to train up to the Florida Derby.

Maximus Mischief suffered his first loss in four career starts in the 1 1/16-mile Holy Bull, his sophomore debut. He won his first three races by 17 combined lengths, capped by a 2 ¼-length triumph in the 1 1/8-mile Remsen Dec. 1 at Aqueduct.

Also prominent among Fountain of Youth nominees are Bourbon War, who bounced back from a fourth in the Remsen to win a 1 1/16-mile allowance Jan. 18 at Gulfstream; Call Paul and Zenden, 1-2, respectively, in the seven-furlong Swale (G3) Feb. 2; 2018 Champagne (G1) runner-up Code of Honor; Grade 3 turf winner Current; Holy Bull runner-up Everfast; Global Campaign, two-for-two this winter at Gulfstream; Hidden Scroll, a 14-length maiden special weight winner Jan. 26 at Gulfstream for Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott; and Maximum Security, who moved to 4-0 with a runaway triumph Feb. 20 over Gulfstream’s main track.

Eclipse Award champion 2-year-old filly Jaywalk is expected to make her sophomore debut in the $200,000 Davona Dale (G2), a one mile event that attracted 19 nominations. Trained by Kentucky Derby (G1) winner John Servis for Cash is King and D.J. Stable, the daughter of Cross Traffic won four straight to end her title season capped by the Frizette (G1) and Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1).

Feedback, Champagne Anyone and Jeltrin, first, third and fourth, respectively, in the Davona Dale prep, the seven-furlong Forward Gal (G3) Feb. 2 at Gulfstream; 2018 Tempted (G3) winner Oxy Lady; Cookie Dough, who swept the final two legs of the Florida Stallion Stakes series last fall; Grade 2-placed High Regard; and Orra Moor, who romped by 7 ¾ lengths Feb. 10 at Gulfstream are also nominated.

A total of 21 older horses were nominated to the $200,000 Mac Diarmida at 1 3/8 miles on the grass, led by multiple graded-stakes winning millionaires Bigger Picture and Channel Maker; 2017 Bowling Green (G2) winner Hunter O’Riley; 2018 Bernard Baruch (G2) winner Qurbaan; and Zulu Alpha, half-length winner of the 1 ½-mle W. L. McKnight (G3) Jan. 26 at Gulfstream.

Defending champion Holy Helena heads 18 older females nominated to the $150,000 The Very One (G3), a list that includes graded-stakes winners A.A. Azula’s Arch, Eskimo Kisses, Puerto Rican import Pure Lemon, Si Que Es Buena and Tricky Escape.

Sophomores will go 1 1/16 miles on turf in the $150,000 Palm Beach (G3) and $150,000 Herecomesthebride (G3), the latter for fillies. Gulfstream turf stakes winners A Thread of Blue, Casa Creed, Henley’s Joy and Louder Than Bombs top 23 nominees to the Palm Beach, while A Bit Special, who ran her win streak to three in the one-mile Sweetest Chant (G3) Feb. 3 at Gulfstream, heads 25 nominees to the Herecomesthebride.

Multiple Grade 1 winner Heart to Heart and 10-year-old Hogy, a 19-time winner of more than $1.3 million in purses, are prominent among 17 nominees to the $150,000 Canadian Turf (G3), one of two one-mile turf stakes for older horses along with the $150,000 Honey Fox (G3) for females, which attracted 22 nominations led by Valedictorian and Peach of a Gal, first and third, respectively, in the Suwannee River (G3) Feb. 9 at Gulfstream.

Rounding out the stakes action is the $100,000 Gulfstream Park Sprint (G3), whose 13 nominees include 2018 Fountain of Youth winner Promises Fulfilled, who went on to win three graded sprint stakes led by the H. Allen Jerkens (G1) at Saratoga.

The horse broke well today,” Gaffalione said. “I had the horse inside, Dunph, going to the lead and then (Gun It) showed a little bit of speed. When I saw they were intent on going I just tried to get him back and got him to relax. He came back to me nicely and settled well down the backside. Got a little keen going into the far turn and wanted to move a little early. But I didn’t want to take too much away from him so I tried to sit as long as I could. He was waiting on horses down the lane but I kept him at task and there was plenty of horse there.”

“Mark (Casse, the trainer) and his team have done a great job,” Gaffalione said. “They’ve had a ton of confidence in this horse the whole way. It’s just an honor to be able to ride the horse. He’s just so professional, trains great and he’s a pleasure to be around.”

Tyler Gaffalione, Rode of War of Will to victory in the G2 Risen Star Stakes at the Fair Grounds

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