July 23, 2024

Epic Ride heads overflow in John Battaglia Memorial

Turfway Park Track
Turfway Park (Coady Photography)

Epic Ride will look to join the Kentucky Derby (G1) picture when he lines up for Saturday’s $150,000 John Battaglia Memorial at Turfway Park. The 1 1/16-mile race on Tapeta will offer points on a 20-10-6-4-2 scale toward a berth in the 150th running of the Kentucky Derby on May 4, and an overflow field of 14, including a pair of also-eligibles, has been entered.

A five-length maiden romper over six furlongs in early January, Epic Ride stretch to a mile and rolled to a four-length score when making his stakes debut in the Leonatus S. on Feb. 2. The Blame colt will look to carry his blossoming form forward from post 6, and Adam Beschizza retains the mount for John Ennis.

Brad Cox has a trio of runners in the main body of the field. Encino, a homebred son of Nyquist for Godolphin, will jump to stakes competition after breaking his maiden the second time out at Turfway on Jan. 26. Alex Concepcion will be back up. Gettysburg Address, a troubled fourth in the Smarty Jones two back, will switch to a synthetic track and add the services of Gerardo Corrales. Fidget, last of nine in the Smarty Jones, will try to get back on track with new jockey Fernando De La Cruz.

Blue Eyed George and Good Bali, second and third in the Leonatus, are also back for Michael McCarthy and Rusty Arnold, respectively. Break Out will invade for Saffie Joseph off a turf maiden win at Gulfstream, and Bolt at Midnight merits respect for Mick Ruis Sr. after recording a convincing front-running maiden tally at Turfway on Feb. 9.