(Brad Cox — Photo Courtesy of Churchill Downs, Inc.)

For some of his racing life, the 3-year-old gelding Mr. Misunderstood has been exactly what his name may suggest. After all, he began his career on the dirt, and try as he might to show everyone that he preferred to both nibble and tread on the grass, he was force fed dirt particles in four of his first seven career starts.

Misunderstood.  Just misunderstood.

But after running last — by many lengths — in the Grade 3 Illinois Derby back in April at Hawthorne, trainer Brad Cox gave this gelded son of Archarcharch some time off and gave himself some time to reflect on what just may be the horse’s future endeavors.

In August, the duo returned o the races in the little Prelude Stakes at Louisiana Downs.  On the grass. And, they won.

In September, the duo tried the $186,000 Super Derby — which was switched to the turf this year. And, they won again.

In very late September, the duo showed up at Churchill Downs for the $100,000 Jefferson Cup. And, guess what? Yep. They won again.

After that race, the duo were a perfect 6-for-6 on the green stuff. And, finally, it was understood. They were going to stay on the grass. And, today, the duo will show up again for the 14th running of the Grade 3 Commonwealth Turf — which will be contested at 11/16-miles.

This afternoon, Flurry Racing Stables’ Mr. Misunderstood will attempt to remain unbeaten on turf as he headlines a field of eight 3-year-olds in Saturday’s 14th running of the $100,000 Commonwealth Turf (Grade III) at Churchill Downs.

“He’s turned into a very nice horse on the turf,” assistant trainer Jorje Abrego said. “I breezed him the (Saturday) morning and he did everything easily (four furlongs in :47.60). I don’t know if he’s the type of horse to jump up into Grade 1s yet but if we keep spotting him right he’ll pick up solid paydays.”

Mr. Misunderstood was victorious by 2 ¾ lengths in the $100,000 Jefferson Cup on Sept. 30 at Churchill Downs as the 6-5 favorite. Now, the gelding boasts an overall record of 11-7-1-0—$304,554.

Mr. Misunderstood drew post 6 and jockey Florent Geroux has the return call to ride.

Chief among Mr. Misunderstood’s rivals is Jefferson Cup third-place finisher Giant Payday (13-3-4-2—$248,020), owned by Lothenbach Stables Inc. One of two entered in the Commonwealth Turf for trainer Ian Wilkes, the 3-year-old Giant’s Causeway colt prevailed two starts ago in Canterbury Park’s $200,000 Mystic Lake Derby. Wilkes’ son-in-law Chris Landeros has the call while Joe Rocco Jr. will ride stable mate Mr Cub (7-2-1-0—$133,807) following a fifth-place effort in the Jefferson Cup.

New to Kentucky is Chiefswood Stables’ Canada-based Tiz a Slam. The Roger Attfield-trainee was the 3 ¼-length winner in the $125,000 Ontario Derby (GIII) on Oct. 15 at Woodbine. A 3-year-old son of Tiznow, Tiz a Slam enters the Commonwealth Turf with a record of 11-4-2-0—$469,147, including a pair of victories on turf. Jockey Robby Albaradohas the mount.

Upset Hawthorne Derby winner My Bariley (13-3-3-2—$159,119); American Derby (GIII) runner-up Gorgeous Kitten (11-2-3-1—$135,148); Dueling Grounds Derby second Parlor(10-3-2-1—$230,895); and Kentucky Downs maiden winner Sharm El Sheikh (9-1-1-2—$121,509) round out the field.

The Commonwealth Turf field from the rail out (with jockey): Sharm El Sheikh (Ricardo Santana Jr.); My Bariley (Fernando De La Cruz); Mr Cub (Rocco); Parlor (Julien Leparoux); Gorgeous Kitten (Corey Lanerie); Mr. Misunderstood (Geroux); Tiz a Slam (Albarado); and Giant Payday (Landeros).

Free Brisnet.com past performances for Saturday’s card and every racing program for Churchill Downs are available online at https://www.brisnet.com/product/past-performances/FPP.