Howe Great didn’t win his last race, but his trainer considered the effort a
sensational one nonetheless.
“I thought he ran great last time at
Belmont (in a
second place finish in the Grade 3 Hill Prince,” said Graham Motion. “Summer
Front had every chance to get beat and he still got by us. I thought our horse
ran a super race. We just got outrun that day. I was very pleased with how he
ran. He’s very consistent. A couple of races in Kentucky, he had lousy post positions and that
might have cost him a little bit. Again, he still didn’t run bad races in
defeat. He’s a very consistent, straight-forward
Motion was referring to Howe Great’s third
place finish in the Grade 2 American Turf Classic at Churchill Downs on May 4
and his fifth place effort in the Grade 1 Toyota Blue Grass Stakes on April 14.
On Saturday, the winner of the Grade 3 Palm Beach Stakes on March 11 at
Gulfstream will be the favorite in the $60,000 Jersey Derby.
“We wanted to get him in a
race where he would look like the favorite on paper. That’s what we’ve done,”
hopefully,’’ said Motion, who added that he thinks Monmouth’s track resembles
Gulfstream’s and that his charge best handles this type of tighter and firmer
Howe Great is the only graded stakes winner
in the field for the $60,000 Jersey Derby that includes Kid Sidney, Fire Alarm,
Scat About, Broxbourne, and Crafty Union. Raconteur and Purest Form are entered
for the main track only.
First run in 1864 as a one-time event at a
track in Paterson,
New Jersey, since 1942 the Jersey
Derby has been held at different distances and on different surfaces at
Garden State Parkway,
Atlantic City Racecourse and now
Monmouth. It will be run at 1 1/16 mile on the turf course on
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