Galleon Mast in the Game for Saturday’s Soldier’s Dancer
Jun 7, 2018
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL
– Anne Scott’s Galleon Mast doesn’t always win, sometimes due to traffic, other times due to his tendency to wait for competition, but the flashy gray gelding is always in the game.
The multiple stakes-winning son of Mizzen Mast, who can be counted on to have his game face on for Saturday’s $100,000 Soldier’s Dancer at Gulfstream Park, is every trainer’s dream.
“He’s been wonderful. He’s been a blast,” trainer David Fawkes said. “He’s made almost a half-million dollars. He’s been a great horse.”
Heading into Saturday’s 1 1/16-mile turf stakes for Florida-breds, Galleon Mast has finished first, second or third, in 20 of 24 career starts, including eight wins and eight seconds. The 5-year-old gelding has finished in the money in all 14 of his starts over the Gulfstream turf, as well as in his last 15 races.
After winning three stakes in a row last year, Galleon Mast made his 2018 debut with a victory in the $150,000 Sunshine Millions Turf Jan. 20. He encountered considerable traffic in his subsequent start in the $150,000 Canadian Turf (G3) March 3, when he rallied from far back after being bumped and carried wide into the stretch.
“He ran a huge race. It’s unfortunate he didn’t get the win, but I think he got the wind knocked out of him that day,” Fawkes said.
Galleon Mast came back to be nosed out of a victory in the Tampa Bay Downs’ $100,000 Turf Classic for Florida- breds March 29.
“When he came back over there, I didn’t think there was any way he’d get beat,” said Fawkes, noting that winner Swagger Jagger came out to brush with Galleon Mast in the stretch but survived an objection. “I think he should have won. He just got beat. But he didn’t quite have the punch that he usually has.”
Miguel Vasquez is scheduled to ride Galleon Mast for the first time Saturday.
Repole Stable’s Driven by Thunder brings a four-race winning streak into the Soldier’s Dancer for trainer Todd Pletcher. The 4-year-old gelded son of Overdriven was claimed at Aqueduct for $25,000 Nov. 30 and paid immediate dividends with a win in an optional claiming allowance for Florida-breds at Gulfstream Jan. 15 while being transferred to turf. He finished second and was placed first in his subsequent starter allowance Feb. 1 before winning back-to-back optional claiming allowance races in open company.
Emisael Jaramillo has the mount for Driven by Thunder’s stakes debut.
Edward Short’s Class and Cash, a 6-year-old gelding who has won 11 of 22 starts on turf, enters the Soldier’s Dancer off a most promising 2018 debut. The Jane Cibelli-trained Florida-bred came off a five-month layoff April 14 to finish second in an optional claiming allowance.
Nik Juarez has been named to ride the son of Exchange Rate.
Zipping, a sharp optional claiming allowance winner on dirt last time out; Tropical, who came back from a year layoff to win a April 29 optional claiming allowance; and Till the End, who captured a May 11 optional claiming allowance after being claimed out of a winning effort in a $16,000 claiming race; are among the most serious contenders.
Yeehaw, Unbridled Holiday and Salute the Colonel round out the field.
Mr. Jordan, a graded-winner who won the Big Drama Stakes at Gulfstream last time out, Deland and Beneficiary are main-track-only entrants.