Tom's d'Etat Eyes Grade I, $600,000 Clark Following Saturday's Fayette Victory at Keeneland

Oct 27, 2019 Kevin Kerstein,Churchill Downs Communications

G M B Racing’s classy eight-time winner Tom’s d’Etat will focus his attention on the marquee race of the Fall Meet at Churchill Downs, the Grade I, $600,000 Clark presented by Norton Healthcare, following his 4 ¼-length victory in Saturday’s $200,000 Fayette Stakes (GII) at Keeneland.

“I can’t even give you any ‘trainer speak’, we’re headed for the Clark,” trainer Al Stall Jr. said Sunday morning. “The Clark obviously sets up perfectly from the Fayette and will be a great next spot for this horse.”

Tom’s d’Etat, a 6-year-old son of Smart Strike, will hope to cap his 2019 campaign with his first Grade I victory. The Kentucky-bred began his year with a ninth-place effort in the $9 million Pegasus World Cup (GI) at Gulfstream Park. Tom’s d’Etat returned to the races in May with a runner-up effort behind McKinzie in the $400,000 Alysheba (GII) and six weeks later finished a gutsy third behind Seeking the Soul and Quip in the $600,000 Stephen Foster (GII) at Churchill Downs. Stall then shipped Tom’s d’Etat to Saratoga where he recorded a one-length victory in the $100,000 Alydar and a fourth-place effort in the $400,000 Woodward (GI).

“We’ve always thought this horse was deserving of a Grade II or Grade I,” Stall said Saturday following the Fayette.

Nominations for the Clark will close Nov. 16.

STAKES PROBABLES – A trio of stakes events are on tap for next weekend at Churchill Downs. On Friday, filly and mare sprinters will take the spotlight in the $120,000-added Dream Supreme Overnight Stakes. The following horses are expected to enter the six-furlong race: Ascot Day, Meadow Dance, Mia Mischief and Skamania. Entries for the Dream Supreme close Sunday.

On Saturday, two stakes will be run on the 10-race program: the $200,000 Chilukki (GIII) for fillies and mares at one mile and the $120,000-added Bet on Sunshine Overnight Stakes at six furlongs. The Chilukki is expected to include Jeltrin, Sally’s Culrin, She’s Pretty Lucky and Talk Veuve to Me.

Nominations for the Bet On Sunshine closed Saturday and are expected to be final on Sunday. Entries will take place on Wednesday for Saturday’s card.

WATCH AND WAGER ON THE BREEDERS’ CUP FROM CHURCHILL DOWNS – Churchill Downs will simulcast the Breeders’ Cup World Championships from Southern California’s Santa Anita on Friday and Saturday. Churchill Downs will run 10 races those days beginning at 2 p.m. and 2:15 p.m., respectively. The first 5,000 fans in attendance on Saturday will receive a free 2020 Churchill Downs Wall Calendar, presented by Humana. The colorful calendar features major event listings and vivid and memorable images from the Kentucky Derby and around the historic racetrack.

A simulcast of the 10-race “Future Stars Friday” card from Santa Anita will begin at 1:45 p.m. and the Breeders’ Cup will cover Races 5-9 (4:12-7:03 p.m.). Championship Saturday’s 12-race program at Santa Anita will commence at 1:07 p.m. with the Breeders’ Cup on Races 4-12 (Breeders’ Cup starts at 2:55 p.m.). It will culminate with the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic (GI) at 8:44 p.m.

When live racing concludes Friday at 7:17 p.m. and Saturday at 8:10 p.m., simulcast wagering on the Breeders’ Cup will continue in the ITW area on the second floor of the Clubhouse, as well as reserved dining spaces and the Horsemen’s Services Center. Customers who attend Churchill Downs on Friday will be able to advance wager on the entire Championship Saturday program from Santa Anita. There is no advance wagering on-track Thursday for the Championship Friday program.

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