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Dust Commander marks return for graded winners

Saturday, February 16, 2008 12:00 AM
  • General
FLORENCE, KY . . . February 14, 2008 . . . Well-traveled graded stakes winners Embossed and Jade's Revenge return to racing in the Dust Commander Stakes at Turfway Park Saturday. A field of 12 is entered for the one-mile Dust Commander, which carries a $50,000 purse.

Time off will be a factor for both Embossed, a 6-year-old Irish-bred, and Jade’s Revenge, a 5-year-old son of Quiet American. Embossed last won in May, taking the Dallas Turf Club Handicap (G3) at a mile and an eighth. He next was fifth, beaten 4 1/2 lengths, in the United Nations Handicap (G1) behind superstars English Channel, Honey Ryder, and Better Talk Now. A sixth-place finish in the Sword Dancer (G1) in August was his last start. In 25 career starts Embossed counts five wins, five seconds, and two thirds while racing primarily in strong allowance and graded stakes races. Embossed is trained by Niall O'Callaghan, who has called Larry Melancon to Turfway to ride.

Jade's Revenge won the Tejano Run at Turfway about a year ago and followed with a win in the Ben Ali (G3) on Keeneland’s Polytrack. He next finished seventh in the Eclipse (G3) at Woodbine in May and has not raced since. Rodney Prescott rides for trainer Graham Motion.

Fresher competition comes from 2006 graded winner Major Rhythm, who comes in off a runner-up finish in the Colonel Bradley Handicap (G3) on the turf at Fair Grounds last month and a win over Woodbine's Polytrack two starts back. Orlando Mojica will ride the 9-year-old for trainer Doug Matthews.

With mid-pack and deep closers faring well in recent days, all three may take a back seat to High Blues, who closed from far back to win a Turfway allowance last month. Trainer George "Rusty" Arnold II has him ready; High Blues posted a best-of-33 work over Keeneland's Polytrack last Saturday, going four furlongs in :47 flat. James Lopez has the mount.

Also entered for the Dust Commander are Itsallboutthechase (jockey Dean Sarvis); Self Made Man (Victor Lebron); Turfway stakes winner Catman Running, training well at Keeneland (Julio Felix); Say It Son (Bill Troilo); Recognition, who won the Dust Commander last year (Tom Pompell); Gin and Sin, another graded stakes competitor in off a long layoff (John McKee); Revival Ridge (Phil Teator); and Win Me Over (Eddie Zuniga).

The Dust Commander is named for the winner of the 1970 Kentucky Derby. His jockey, Mike Manganello, will be on hand Saturday to present the trophy.

Post time Saturday is 1:10 pm. Admission and parking are free.

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