Monday, December 26, 2016

Gulfstream: Waiting for the Mr. Prospector

The original Monday schedule for Gulfstream Park had the $100,000 Mr. Prospector (Grade 3) at six furlongs on dirt for 3-year-olds and up.

However, the race drew just five entrants. So Gulfstream has postponed the Mr. Prospector and will run it either next Saturday Dec. 31 or Sunday Jan. 1. Gulfstream will   make that announcement on Wednesday.

Three of the original entrants for the Mr. Prospector are stakes winners trained by Jorge Navarro. They are X Y Jet, Delta Bluesman and Shaft of Light.

If X Y Jet is healthy there is a widespread view that other horses might be competing for second place money of $20,000 rather than the winner’s share of $60,000.

So, the Gulfstream racing office is no doubt offering informal quid pro quos to trainers to get them to run horses in the rescheduled Mr. Prospector.  That process often includes listening closely when a trainer asks Gulfstream to schedule a race with conditions that are well suited for one of his or her horses.

Delta Bluesman won this July 2’s Smile Sprint Handicap at Gulfstream. Monster Racing owns Delta Bluesman and Shaft of Light.

Shaft of Light won the Rapid Transit sprint stakes at Gulfstream on Dec. 3., on the Claiming Crown card.
Rockingham Ranch and Gelfenstein Farm owns X Y Jet, a  4-year-old gelding.

X Y Jet won last year’s Mr. Prospector in the very fast time of 1:08.56.  He then won the Sunshine Millions Sprint at Gulfstream and the Gulfstream Park Sprint (Grade 3), followed by a second place finish in the Golden Shaheen in Dubai.
X Y Jet had surgery several weeks after the Dubai race to remove a chip in a knee. In his comeback races this fall he finished fifth in the Vosburgh (Grade 1) at Belmont Park in New York and third in the Frank J. De Francis Memorial Dash (Grade 3) at Laurel Park in Maryland.

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HorseRacing FLA staff