Rematches, rather than potential sweeps, will be the attractions in Saturday’s third and final legs of the Florida Stallion Stakes series for 2-year-olds.
Two T’s at Two B and D’nied Permission, the winners of the first two races in the males division, will be back at Calder Casino & Race Course for the $300,000 In Reality Stakes.
So will the late-running Joshua’s Comprise, who finished fourth and second in the series’ first two races.
The co-feature $300,000 My Dear Girl is the finale in the fillies division of the Stallion Stakes.
Candy Coded Kisses and Putyourdreamsaway, the winners of the series’ first two races, are part of a 10-horse field.
Putyourdreamsaway is the likely favorite based on her dominating win in the series’ Susan’s Girl Stakes on Aug. 25.
The My Dear Girl and the In Reality are 1 1/16 miles on dirt.
They are among five stakes on Calder’s 21st annual Festival of the Sun race day.
The $100,000 Spend A Buck Handicap (Grade 3) is 1 1/16 miles on dirt for 3-year-olds and up. Cash Rules, a three-time Calder stakes winner this year, and Gourmet Dinner, who was Calder’s top 2-year-old in 2010, head the eight-horse field.
The Festival card has two stakes on turf for 3-year-olds.
The $75,000 Frances A. Genter Stakes is one mile on turf for fillies. Awesome Belle, seeking her fourth consecutive win in a Calder stakes, is the likely heavy favorite.
The $75,000 Tropical Park Derby is 1 1/8 miles for males.
Unlike in the past four years, there will not be a sweep of a Stallion Stakes series.
Big Drama in 2008, Jackson Bend in 2009 and Fort Loudon in 2011 swept the male division. Awesome Feather swept the fillies division in 2010.
Those horses went on to national prominence, helping attract more attention for the Stallion Stakes and Calder’s overall racing for 2-year-olds.
Two T’s at Two B, trained by Kathleen O’Connell, is the probable favorite in the In Reality.
After winning his first two starts, Two T’s at Two B coasted to a 3 3/4-length win over Dixie High in the six-furlong Dr. Fager Stakes at Calder on July 28. That was the first race in the Stallion Stake series.
On Aug.25, Two T’s at Two B was the 2-5 favorite in the series’ seven-furlong Affirmed Stakes.
He raced almost head-to-head in a speed duel with Dixie High until D’nied Permission and later Joshua’s Comprise passed them in the stretch.
D’nied Permission, at 21-1, held on to beat 25-1 shot Joshua’s Comprise by a neck.
Two T’s at Two B finished third by 1 3/4 lengths.
“He will get better as the races get longer,” said Barry Rose, the trainer of Joshua’s Comprise.
The 10-horse In Reality field has several horses that, like Two T’s at Two B, have shown early speed.
One is Speak Logistics, an impressive winner of a recent one-mile maiden race at Monmouth Park in Oceanport, N.J.
“It looks like there is enough speed so that it could be a contentious pace, and some of them could come back to us,” said Joe Calascibetta, the trainer of the stalker D’nied Permission
In the fillies division, Candy Coded Kisses won the six-furlong Desert Vixen by four lengths over Putyourdreamsaway.
On Aug. 25, Putyourdreamsaway beat Candy Coded Kisses by 7 1/2 lengths in the seven-furlong Susan’s Girl.
Cash Rules comes into the Spend A Buck off a win in the 11/16-mile Darn That Alarm Stakes at Calder on Sept. 1.
Gourmet Dinner will be making his first start of the year at Calder after racing in stakes at tracks in Northern states.
He won the 11/16-mile Majestic Light Stakes at Monmouth Park on July 29.
In the Frances Genter, Awesome Belle’s toughest competition could come from Jazz and Frolic’s Revenge.
Awesome Belle won her past three races gate-to-wire, “but doesn’t need to be on the lead,” said her trainer, Stan Gold.
Awesome Belle won last year’s My Dear Girl for Gold for owner Fred Brei.
They combined for the series sweeps with Jackson Bend, Awesome Feather and Fort Loudon.
The Tropical Park Derby will be a rematch of the first three finishers in the Needles, a 1 1/16-mile turf stakes at Calder on Sept. 15.
They are Mucho Mas Macho, Empire Builder and Musical Flair.