All Together and Demonstrative, the respective winner and second-place finisher in the $70,000 Jonathan Kiser Novice Stakes, will clash again Thursday, Aug. 18, in Saratoga Race Course’s $70,000 Michael G. Walsh Novice Stakes.
The fourth Steeplechase Thursday program at the historic New York track also will feature the $53,000 National Steeplechase Association J. P. Morgan Hurdle, an optional allowance race that drew a full field of 12 and one also-eligible.
Arcadia Stables’ All Together, last year’s novice champion, collected his first 2011 victory with a powerful late move in Saratoga’s Kiser Novice on July 28. The six-year-old Danzig gelding finished 2 1/4 lengths clear of Demonstrative, the 1.70-1 favorite in the 2 1/16-mile Kiser. Trainer Jack Fisher named Xavier Aizpuru to ride All Together in the 2 3/8-mile Walsh Novice.
Jacqueline Ohrstrom’s Demonstrative, winner of Belmont Park’s $50,000 William Entenmann Novice Stakes on July 3, will seek to continue an impressive four-year-old season after reigning as the 2010 champion three-year-old. Trained by Richard Valentine, Demonstrative will be ridden by Robbie Walsh.
Also entering the Walsh from the Kiser are Here Comes Art, Italian Wedding, and Cornhusker, the respective third, fourth, and fifth finishers.
Carrington Racing Stables’ Here Comes Art set the Kiser’s pace and was nipped for second money, a head behind Demonstrative. Bernie Dalton will ride for Arch Kingsley Jr.
Italian Wedding and One Giant Step will be a betting entry for owner-trainer Jonathan Sheppard. Brian Crowley will ride Italian Wedding, who finished a half-length behind Here Comes Art. Danielle Hodsdon, returning from a training injury, will be aboard One Giant Step, who finished second to Demonstrative in the Entenmann.
Trainer Tom Voss is adding blinkers to Armata Stable’s Cornhusker, who was prominent early in the Kiser and faded through Saratoga’s stretch to finish 9 1/4 lengths behind Italian Wedding. Paddy Young, currently leading the jockey standings, has the mount.
The nine-horse Walsh will have three additional starters who did not participate in the Kiser. Fisher, who is seeking his third victory of the Saratoga meet, also will saddle Gil Johnston’s Mr. Hot Stuff, winner of a Penn National Race Course optional allowance over fences on June 24. Willie Dowling has the mount.
Todd McKenna will send out Mrs. Timothy Gardner’s Class Century, a maiden winner at the Carolina Cup Races in Camden, S.C., on April 2. Roddy Mackenzie will ride.
Irvin S. Naylor’s Organisateur will make his first U.S. start after a novice career in England. Darren Nagle will ride. The stakes race honors the memory of Mickey Walsh, a popular leading steeplechase trainer who died in 1993 and was inducted into the Racing Hall of Fame four years later.
Sheppard will have two starters for the NSA J. P. Morgan. Augustin Stables’ Port Morsbey finished third in the $50,000 Queen’s Cup MPC Stakes for novices near Charlotte, N.C., on April 30. Parker’s Project, owned by Hudson River Stables, will be seeking his first victory of the year. Crowley rides Port Morsbey, and Nagle rides Parker’s Project.
High Hope Stable’s Baltic Shore will be looking to move into the winner’s circle after finishing a nose behind Royal Rossi in the Steeplechase Owners and Trainers Association Firestone Hurdle, an optional allowance on Aug. 4. Dalton will ride for trainer Kingsley.