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Hutcheson Stakes: Travelin Man looks to step-up

Saturday's Grade 2 Hutcheson Stakes at Gulfstream Park (4:51 Eastern post time) is a Derby prep in the same manner that last Sunday's San Vicente Stakes was as Derby prep - it's a three-year-old graded stakes race, so it can impact the earnings table, but because it's a seven furlong sprint, it's not a race we really look to to find a Derby winner.

3-Travelin Man (5/2), a son of Trippi out of a Gone West mare (West Side Dancer), jumps into the graded stakes ranks following a runaway win over a group of maidens at Gulfstream on January 6th.  The Todd Pletcher trainee picked up a 106 Beyer for his effort (105 Bris), easily the best figure for any horse in the field.   Travelin Man is the morning line favorite at 5/2.

Others in the Hutcheson field:

1-Crossbow (5/1), a son of Bernardini out of a Forest Wildcat mare, has notched back-to-back wins against Maiden Special Weight and N1X company.  He scored his first win at Aqueduct on January 2nd and then came back to pick up an allowance win at Gulfstream on January 29th. 

2-Madman Diaries (6/1) tried the lawn last time out when he finished 4th (2 1/2 lenghts) behind Pluck in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf.  Trainer Wesley Ward gave him the winter off and now rolls him back into stakes company after a couple of lightning fast works over the Gulfstream main track.

Over the last five years, Wesley Ward is 44-for-199 with horses coming back after 60 to 180 days off (22%, $1.69 $2 ROI).  Filtered for just graded stakes races, he's 2-for-10 ($1.31 ROI) with Final Mesa (G3 Old Hat) and Pleasant Prince (G3 Ohio Derby) his two winners during that time frame.

5-Flashpoint (4/1) was a runaway maiden winner in his first career start back on January 15th at Aqueduct.  A Richard Dutrow trainee with a sprinters pedigree (Pomeroy - Two Punch mare), he'll try to gun it from the moment the gates open.

7-Leave of Absence (12/1) tried his luck in the Holy Bull last time out and finished a distant 6th. 

8-Black N Beauty (8/1) also comes out of the Holy Bull where he finished well back of Dialed In.

Grade 2 Hutcheson Stakes
Gulfstream Park
7 furlongs
Purse: $150,000
Post time: 4:51 Eastern

PP Horse Jockey Trainer ML
1 Crossbow R. Dominguez K. McLaughlin 5/1
2 Madman Diaries J. Sanchez W. Ward 6/1
3 Travelin Man J. Velazquez T. Pletcher 5/2
4 Razmataz J. Castellano T. Pletcher 10/1
5 Flashpoint C. Velasquez R. Dutrow 4/1
6 Little Drama J. Bravo D. Fawkes 20/1
7 Leave of Absence R. Maragh R. Violette 12/1
8 Black N Beauty K. Desormeaux D. Romans 8/1
9 Manicero L. Saez L. Azpurua 12/1
10 Royal Currier E. Trujillo P. Farro 8/1