Rivals Meet Again in The Whitney H.

Category : News - Thu 01/08/2013 - 15:58 EDT

Mucho Macho Man will go into the gate this Saturday at Saratoga looking for his first Grade I stakes win, after coming oh-so-close in a thrilling second place finish in the 2012 Breeders’ Cup Classic. He’ll also be looking for some revenge, as he faces once again the colt he just couldn’t catch in the Classic in Fort Larned. The two rivals will go head-to-head in the $750,000 Whitney Invitational Handicap, where Fort Larned has been installed as the 7-5 morning line favorite and is the defending champ.

Fort Larned tunes up with Stephen Foster

Fort Larned is coming off a win in the Grade I Stephen Foster Handicap at Churchill, his first win in three starts in 2013, following dull efforts in the Gulfstream Park and Oaklawn Handicaps earlier in the year.  He’ll face two of his Stephen Foster rivals on Saturday, including Ron the Greek, who finished third, and Successful Dan, who was fourth. For his part, Mucho Macho Man opened the year as the well-beaten favorite in the Gulfstream Sunshine Millions Classic, and most recently came back to finish third in the Criminal Type Stakes at Belmont.

Strong field of graded-stakes contenders

Both Mucho Macho Man and Ron The Greek have been listed as the co-third choice for the Whitney at 6-1, behind the 5-2 Cross Traffic, who was beaten by a nose in the Grade I Metropolitan Handicap at Belmont. It was the second, second-place finish in graded-stakes company for the four-year-old Unbridled Song colt, who won his first two career starts earlier this year. Rounding out the Whitney field will be Fast Falcon and Alpha, third and fourth, respectively, in the Grade II Suburban Handicap, and Csaba, most recently third in the Grade III Salvator Mile.

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