Rice looking at Forego, Vosburgh for Vanderbilt winner
After taking Saturday’s Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap at
Linda Rice indicated Palace would now target
the Grade 1, $500,000 Forego going seven furlongs August 30 back at the Spa. On
Sunday, the trainer added her five-year-old runner might await
the Grade 1, $400,000 Vosburgh scheduled for six furlongs on September 27 at
“Obviously, I’m going to point in the direction of the
Forego and decide if he’s up to that at the time,” Rice explained. “Six
a better distance for him; I guess it depends on who shows up and to whether he
needs more time.
“It’s back a little quick. I’ve run him from the True North to
the (Belmont Sprint Championship) to this one. We’ve got what we needed, which
was a Grade 1 victory. It will be a choice whether I skip the Forego and go
straight to the Vosburgh. His owner lives up here and would love to run in the
The New York-bred Palace became a Grade 1 winner
on Saturday when he tracked down Happy My Way to win the Vanderbilt by one
length. It was the fifth stakes win for Palace, whom Rice and owner Antonino
Miuccio claimed for $20,000 in October 2012.
Rice also trained Palace’s sire, City Zip, and she noted the
similarities between father and son.
“When Bakken scratched (from the Vanderbilt), it looked
like there was one lone speed, which was concerning,” she said. “(Palace) broke
a step slow, too, which didn’t help. But (jockey) Cornelio (Velasquez) was
aggressive with him early.
“It’s great when you can sit back and let him do his
thing. He’s pretty versatile, pretty much like his father who could win on the
lead, or, like when we won the (2000) Hopeful here in a dead-heat with Yonaguska, he came from 15 lengths back. He was versatile, and Palace is, too.
“It’s kind of extra special, winning a Grade 1 here with his father and winning a
Grade 1 with Palace.”
Rice stated that by winning the Vanderbilt, Palace established himself as a
“I feel like, with him being a sprinter, having won a Grade
1 with him on the dirt, it makes his career as a stallion. Now, if
we could go forward with the Vosburgh, Breeders’ Cup Sprint, or maybe the
Forego, that could bring him to a higher level. At this point, in my mind — and
I’ve already had inquiries as of 5 p.m. (EDT) yesterday — that cemented his value as a
stallion, and I’m tickled about that.”
Palace drew post position 1 for the Vanderbilt but was able
to work out a good trip under Velasquez. The same can’t be said for his
stablemate La Verdad, who was fifth as the favorite after leaving from post 1 in
the Honorable Miss Handicap last Monday.
“She bled a little bit in that race,” Rice explained.
“Everything went wrong — the post, the mud, taking her off the pace. When I
watched the head-on (replay), I could see that (jockey) Jose (Ortiz) was trying
to get off the rail because there was stream of water on the inside, like trying
to avoid mud puddles. Nothing went well, but we had a lot of good days with her,
and I guess we were due to have a bad one.
“Hopefully, she will rebound in the
(Grade 1, $500,000) Ballerina (going seven furlongs on August 23 at Saratoga), and, of course, we
have (the Grade 2, $300,000 Gallant Bloom Handicap on September 20 going 6 1/2
Belmont as well.”