Friday, January 4, 2013 12:00 AM
FLORENCE, Ky., Jan. 4, 2013 – Eight newly-turned 3-year-olds will use the $50,000 Turfway Prevue Stakes at Turfway Park this Saturday as a step toward the Spiral Stakes (G3) in March. The Prevue is the first of three local preps for the Spiral, itself a points race for the Kentucky Derby (G1).
Bye Bye Bernie has been off since he posted a front-running score in a maiden special weight on the Polytrack at Keeneland in October. He brings the field's highest speed figure to the race and was a good third in his debut, a turf sprint at Belmont Park, behind eventual Grade 1 winner Joha. He has shown a willingness to fight and may need that trait in the Prevue if the rest of the plentiful speed holds up. Elvis Trujillo was aboard for the Keeneland win and comes in to ride for trainer Kelly Breen. Like the rest of the field save Silver Tongued, he carries 118 pounds.
Silver Tongued brings a restricted stakes win to the Turfway Prevue, having defeated nine rivals in the 1 1/16 mile Juvenile Stakes at Thistledown in October, his second career start. He came from far back in that race, a style that may not suit him in the 6 1/2-furlong Prevue. In his most recent race, the Kentucky Jockey Club (G2) at Churchill also going long, he was far off the board after a slow break. The Prevue will be Silver Tongued's first race on an all-weather surface, but Jeff Greenhill trains him at Turfway. Albin Jimenez rides Saturday. Silver Tongued will carry high weight on 122 pounds.
Like Silver Tongued, Lew and Mike was way off the board last out in the Kentucky Jockey Club, but one race before that he led all the way to win an allowance race at seven furlongs on Keeneland's Polytrack. On the minus side, he has no published works since his last race. Shane Sellers comes in to ride for trainer Tom Drury.
Mike Maker brings Mile Range, who broke his maiden at Turfway in September. He likewise has not raced since finishing fifth in an October allowance on the Keeneland turf but has worked twice at Turfway in December in preparation for his return, and Maker's dominance at Turfway can't be discounted. Luis Martinez Jr. rides.
The Turfway Prevue field from the rail out: Silver Tongued; Lew and Mike; Mac the Man, also trained by Greenhill (Norberto Arroyo Jr.); Mile Range; Smokinindaboysroom (Victor Lebron); Bye Bye Bernie; Saint Arbor (Rafael Hernandez); and Corso's Law (Rodney Prescott).
The Turfway Prevue is the ninth of 10 races on Saturday's card. First post is 1:10 p.m.
In the prep sequence, the Turfway Prevue is followed by the WEBN Stakes at a mile on Feb. 2 and the John Battaglia Memorial Stakes at 1 1/16 miles on March 2.