The $80,000 Awad Stakes will run as Race 8 on the October 31st card at Belmont Park.
The event for 2-year-olds will cover 1 1/16 miles on turf and include names like Wootton Asset, Space Launch, Catman, and Step Dancer among the field of 13.
Here is a look at the top runners set for the Awad Stakes.
Betting Preview: Wootton Asset, Space Launch
One of the top runners coming into the race is Madaket Stables’ Wootton Asset. The Wootton Bassett colt is trained by H. Graham Motion.
He has a career record of 2-1-0 from five starts and earnings of $64,120.
Last time out, the colt finished second in the October 3rd Laurel Futurity (Black Type) at Pimlico. During his running in France, he finished fifth in the August 22nd Criterium du Fonds Européen de L’Elevage at Deaville and first in a June 15th allowance race at Le Lion D’angers.
Wootton Asset will break from Post 12 under jockey Joel Rosario.
He will be up against Space Launch, owned by Athlone Racing, Daniel Burke, and Jane Burke.
The Bernardini colt is trained by Christoph Clement.
He is 1-0-0 from one career start with earnings of $34,650.
That victory came in a September 18th maiden special weight race at Belmont Park.
Space Launch will break from Post 7 under rider Manuel Franco.
Betting Preview: Catman, Step Dancer
Another entrant to pay attention to is Catman, owned by Paradise Farm Corp., David Staudacher, John Piehowics, Angelo Carlesimo, and Michael Maker. The Kitten’s Joy colt is trained by Michael Maker as well.
He is 1-1-0 from three career starts and has earnings of $108,432.
The colt is coming off an October 3rd victory in the Laurel Futurity (Black Type) at Pimlico, which followed a runner-up effort in a September 12th maiden special weight race at Kentucky Downs.
Catman will break from Post 2 under Kendrick Carmouche.
Hayward Pressman, Diamond M Stable, and Donna Pressman’s Step Dancer is looking for his first stakes win for trainer Barclay Tagg.
The War Dancer colt has a career record of 1-0-1 from two starts and earnings of $52,100.
He finished third last time out in the October 3rd Pilgrim Stakes (G2) at Belmont Park, which followed a September 4th maiden special weight victory at Saratoga.
Step Dancer will break from Post 8 under jockey Dylan Davis.
The rest of the field (post, jockey) is set to include:
Shawdyshawdyshawdy (Post 1, J. Lezcano), Like a Saltshaker (Post 2, J. L. Ortiz), Claw (Post 4, J. R. Velazquez), Kidnapped (Post 5, I. Ortiz, Jr.), Take Profit (Post 6, E. Cancel), Heat of the Night (Post 9, J. Alvarado), It’s a Gamble (Post 10, L. Saez), It Can Be Done (Post 11, J. Castellano), and Master of the Ring (Post 13, J. R. Velazquez).
Free Betting Pick
The field for the Awad Stakes is wide open. Space Launch looks like a good choice, with trainer Christoph Clement seeking his third victory in the Awad. A maiden winner, the son of Bernardini has been training well, according to Clement.
Spooky Express Free Pick: Space Launch
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