Mohaymen stands as one of the early favourites for the 2016 Triple Crown circuit, and will look to begin his march towards the spring gauntlet at the Holly Bull Stakes.
The Holly Bull Stakes is a GR2 grind run over 1 1/16 mile on Gulfstream Park’s dirt track, offering a purse of $400,000. This year’s event will run on January 30th as part of The Road to the Kentucky Derby with a 10-4-2-1 points split awarded to the top-four finishers.
Mohaymen has been unbeatable in his three starts as a juvenile, winning a maiden at Belmont Park in September before smashing the competition at the Nashua and Remsen at Aqueduct. In both of those GR2 races, Moyahmen bested Flexibility who recently won the Jerome to start his journey to the Triple Crown circuit.
Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin is a big fan of the Holly Bull Stakes, a race he won in 2014 with Cairo Prince. “He was great and happy,” McLaughlin noted during Moyahmen’s breezing runs at Palm Meadows Training Center. “He might skip a work but he’s going to probably work weekly and point for the race at the end of the month.”
The results of this race will have a big impact on how handicappers continue to play the Kentucky Derby Futures Wager as well. Mohaymen ended the first pool of betting as the second favourite at 11/1. He stands behind Nyquist, who earned 9/1 odds to win the Kentucky Derby, and will begin his 2016 season at the San Vicente on February 15th. The next window for wagering on KDFW will be February 12th thru 14th.
The field for the 2016 Holly Bull Stakes is still in the process of being declared, but Mohaymen will enter as the odds on favourite.
The most famous winner of the Holly Bull Stakes is Barbaro, who would also go on to win the 2006 Kentucky Derby. Barbaro is remembered in Preakness Stakes history for breaking his leg in 20 places at the end of the race. If not for the quick thinking of jockey Edgar Prado, Barbaro’s life would’ve ended there. The 2006 Holly Bull Stakes winner is honoured on Preakness Day with the Barbaro Stakes.