Set Piece targets the G3 Forbidden Apple

SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY – Juddmonte’s multi-level winning game play set to have clean fractions to close in Friday’s 3rd year, $175,000 Forbidden Apple, a one-mile indoor turf test for older horses at Saratoga Racetrack.

Six-year-old gelding Dansili, who is 20-10-2-1 for stock market earnings of just under $700,000, finished seventh, beaten by two lengths by Shirl’s Speight, in the its seasonal Grade 1 Maker’s Mark Mile debut in April at Keeneland.

Last out, Set Piece rallied 11 lengths off the pace to post a 1 1/4 length score at the Grade 2 1 1/16 mile dinner on May 21 at Pimlico Racecourse.

Trained by Brad Cox, the Briton made the grade in the Grade 2 Wise Dan last June at Churchill before qualifying for the popular mare Got Stormy in the Grade 1 Fourstardave Handicap in August at Spa.

Florent Geroux retains the inside post mount.

Mary Abeel Sullivan Revocable Trust’s Mira mission has posted triple-digit Beyer speed numbers in each of its last three starts, starting with a 100 for its three-quarter score on the Grade 3 Canadian turf on March 5 at Gulfstream Park.

4-year-old gelding Noble Mission followed with a fifth-place finish in the Grade 1 Maker’s Mark Mile in April at Keeneland who earned a career-best 101 before a narrow-neck loss to Santin last seen in the Grade 1 Turf Classic on 7th May at Churchill Downs which recorded a turnover of 100.

Coach Ian Wilkes, who took over coaching duties from Tom Bush late last year, said Mira Mission had blossomed.

“He just matured. He had a great base and is very consistent,” Wilkes said. “He’s just an honest little horse. He always tries and you have to love him. He came to me in great shape and I’m very lucky to reap the rewards.

Wilkes said he intended to enter Mira Mission in Grade 2 Wise Dan on the closing weekend at Churchill before grass racing at that meet is scrapped.

“He was gone all winter and spring, and then I had to regroup,” Wilkes said. “He trains well, so it was convenient that this race was here. The horse did well.

Mira Mission made two grass starts at the Spa for Bush, including an optional claim smart score in August over nine furlongs.

“Hopefully I can get the same result as Tom and win,” Wilkes said with a laugh.

Julien Leparoux returns to post 3.

Four-time Eclipse Award-winning trainer Chad Brown will have two chances to score his first Forbidden Apple score when he saddles Public Sector and Analyze It.

Public sector Klaravich Stables posted a 7-4-2-0 record last year, led by wins at Grade 2 Hall of Famer Saratoga and Grade 3 Saranac. The 4-year-old Kingman colt was off the board in the Grade 1 nine-leaf grass classic on his seasonal debut in May at Churchill before a final third in the Grade 3 poker of a mile on June 18 at Belmont.

Analyze It by William H. Lawrence, a 7-year-old Point of Entry gelding, is a three-time grader winner with his most recent score at the upcoming level in September 2020 at Grade 3 Red Bank in Monmouth Park. Boasting a consistent record of 16-5-4-3 for purse earnings of $951,850, Analyze It enters third in the Cliff Hanger on May 28 in Monmouth on its seasonal debut.

The public sector will start from position 7 under Irad Ortiz, Jr. while Analyze It will break out from position 6 under Jose Ortiz.

Clear Vision of MeB Racing Stables was one of the main winners at the Grade 3 Tropical Turf in January at Gulfstream Park to provide 24-year-old trainer Matthew O’Connor with his only win to date.

O’Connor claimed Clear Vision in October for $25,000 on a gate-to-wire score on Belmont Turf and entered gelding Artie Schiller in the Claiming Crown Emerald Starter in January at Gulfstream, finishing second to his 10- 1 Tropical Lawn upset.

Clear Vision finished off the board in its next three starts, including a fourth last in Mr. Steele’s 1 1/16 mile on May 21 at Gulfstream.

“I had missed a job on him before the race and he got caught at the top of the stretch, but he didn’t give up,” O’Connor said. “He was up for it and finished a good fourth. He’s one of those hard-hitting horses that knows his job and loves what he does.

Clear Vision completed a half mile Saturday in 50.60 on the dirt at Palm Meadows Training Center and will ship to Saratoga on Sunday.

“He’s doing great,” O’Connor said. “We’ve been targeting this race since we gave it a break after Canadian Turf. We chose the Mr. Steele as the build because it was decent spacing in this race. It would arrive fine and has a solid working tab. I couldn’t be happier with him. I expect it to run well.

The 6-year-old Bay posted a 4 3/4 lead on the Saratoga turf in August one start before being stopped by O’Connor. The young conditioner said he hopes Clear Vision will enjoy a return to winning ways at Spa.

“I’ve been going there every summer since I was little. To be able to run up there, especially in a 3rd year with a decent shot to win, is exciting,” O’Connor said. “Any race in Saratoga feels like a freshman, but when you race in a graded stake and live there, it’s a privilege. Hopefully he races well and wins or hits the board. We’d be happy either way. .

Eric Cancel will pilot Clear Vision from position 5.

Three Diamonds Farm’s Atone set the tone for the Dinner Party en route to a third-place finish, finishing 1 1/2 lengths behind Set Piece.

Trained by Mike Maker, 5-year-old gelding Into Mischief earned a career-best 101 Beyer when he finished fourth in the Maker’s Mark Mile Grade 1 in April at Keeneland on his season debut. He achieved black type in December when he was second to Doswell in Fort Lauderdale’s Grade 2.

Flavien Prat will drive Atone from position 8.

Another likely presence for Hall of Fame trainer Mark Casse are Ironhorse Racing Stable, BlackRidge Stables, TNT Equine Holdings and Saratoga Seven Racing Partners’ Get Smokin.

The 5-year-old Get Stormy gelding won 2 of 4 starts last season, including scores in Grade 3 at Tampa Bay and the one-mile Seek Again at Belmont. He finished second to Shirl’s Speight in her title defense of Tampa Bay on her seasonal debut in February before an off-the-table effort in the Group 1 Al Quoz Sprint in March at Meydan.

Get Smokin was game two, beaten a header by the admissions office, when he returned to action for the last time in Grade 3 Arlington on June 4 at Churchill.

He will come out of post 9 under Hall of Famer Javier Castellano.

To complete a busy field, the multiple graded stakes placed Wolfie’s Dynaghost [post 2, Luis Saez]; graduated bets placed City Man [post 10, Joel Rosario]; Scuttlebuzz bet winner [post 11, Manny Franco]; Sanctuary City, raised in New York, placed at several piles [post 12, Kendrick Carmouche]; and triple winner Yes and Yes [post 4, John Velazquez]. Art Collector, winner of Grade 1 Woodward last year in Saratoga, is entered for the main track only.

The Forbidden Apple is scheduled as Race 9 on Friday’s 10-race card, which includes the $150,000 Coronation Cup in Race 8. The first post is at 1:05 p.m. EST.

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