Keeneland Stakes Update: Hotshot Anna Heads Field for Friday’s G3 Buffalo Trace Franklin County

(Keeneland Starting Gate / Photo by Holly M. Smith)

From the Keeneland Media Team:

Hugh Robertson’s Hotshot Anna has been a model of high-quality consistency in her past 10 starts dating back to April 2018 with seven wins and three second-place finishes. She brings that consistency into Friday’s $150,000 Buffalo Trace Franklin County (G3).

“She gets here today from Hawthorne,” said Mac Robertson on Thursday, the day before he saddles the 5-year-old mare for his father on Friday for the 5½-furlong grass test.

Hotshot Anna has done the bulk of her damage in those 10 starts on all-weather surfaces and in her most recent start she scored her second consecutive victory in the Presque Isle Downs Masters (G2).

“She has been turned out a couple of times and came back better each time,” Mac Robertson said. “She has tremendous rateable speed and that makes her (a strong contender). If they go too slow, she will be breathing down their necks. They go too fast, she can sit four or five lengths off the pace.”

The Buffalo Trace Franklin County will mark the Keeneland debut for Hotshot Anna.

“Dad was thinking about running her on the dirt here, but we had (multiple graded stakes-placed) Amy’s Challenge ready to roll at the time and that was that,” Robertson said.

Hotshot Anna is cataloged to the Book 1 opening session of Keeneland’s November Breeding Stock Sale on Wednesday, Nov. 6. Taylor Made Sales Agency, agent, is consigning the mare as a broodmare prospect.

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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