The 2016 Holy Bull Stakes cracks its gates open next weekend on January 30th, and all eyes will be focused on Mohaymen. The three-year old son of Tapit is undefeated in three races, having won the Remsen and the Nashua at the end of 2014. He is also the second favourite amongst Triple Crown hopefuls this coming season, ranking just behind the front running Nyquist.
Two weeks ago, Mohaymen ran like he was shot out of a canon, covering five furlongs in just 0:59 2/5 which brought some excitement from trainer Kiaran McLaughlin. “It’s very exciting. He’s training great and done everything right. He works well every time and comes back, and doesn’t blow out a match…We know he can handle most things thrown at him at this stage. We just hope we have a good trip and a clean trip.”
It certainly seems like the winner of the Gulfstream main event next weekend is a given, and excitement for Mohaymen continues to rise as we march down the road to the Kentucky Derby.
Conquest Big E might stand as the biggest threat to Mohaymen at the 2016 Holy Bull Stakes. His disappointing 8th place finish at the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile notwithstanding, the highly rated Conquest Stables product topped the podium at an impressive allowance hosted by Churchill Downs to finish his 2015 campaign. He ran a mile in 1:37.62.
Greenpointcrusader also remains an intriguing entry. He placed 7th at the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile just after winning the one-mile Champagne (GR1) with a time of 1:36.25. This will be Greepointcrusader’s first race at Gulfstream and he remains, quite literally, a dark horse in the 2016 Holy Bull Stakes.
Fellowship will also compete at the 2016 Holy Bull Stakes with the hopes of generating the same buzz he had at the tail of 2015. The Stanley Gold trainee finished first in a Gulfstream maiden while placing second at the Birdonthewire and another allowance at Gulfstream West. He also finished a respectable 5th at the Mucho Macho Man Stakes to start his sophomore season.
Perfect Saint and Frontier Ranger are also projected to race in the 2016 Holy Bull Stakes, but nobody feels more important than Mohaymen. Truth be told, running this race just seems like a formality. Everyone just wants to see how fast McLaughlin’s star truly is as a three-year old.
The 2016 Holy Bull Stakes is a 1 1/16 mile race on dirt at Gulfstream Park, scheduled for January 30th. It offers a purse of $350,000.