Churchill Downs Racing Club’s 2018 Commonwealth Stakes (Grade III) winner Warrior’s Club will face off against a competitive field of nine older horses in Saturday’s $120,000-added Kelly’s Landing Overnight Stakes at Churchill Downs
The Kelly’s Landing is one of three stakes races on Churchill Downs’ 12-race closing day card. The seven-furlong event will go as Race 8 at 4:22 p.m. (all times Eastern).
Trained by D. Wayne Lukas, Warrior’s Club (32-5-8-5—$796,504) has taken his 200-member club on a memorable journey with 32 starts spanning racetracks in Kentucky, Arkansas and New York. The colt recently finished sixth in the $500,000 Churchill Downs Stakes (GI) on Kentucky Derby Day. Prior to his start in the Churchill Downs Stakes, Warrior’s Club nearly defended his title in the $250,000 Commonwealth Stakes but was defeated 1 ¼ lengths by Bobby’s Wicked One.
The 4-year-old by Warrior’s Reward was one of the first horses purchased when the Churchill Downs Racing Club was inaugurated in 2016. The club gives fans a chance to go behind the scenes in Thoroughbred ownership with exclusive club events for morning training, access to the paddock area for the horse’s races and complimentary admission to Churchill Downs. The Churchill Downs Racing Club has five active clubs and more than 1,200 members. Including partnerships, the Racing Club horses have 14 wins with earnings of more than $1.2 million.
Warrior’s Club, who finished third in last year’s Kelly’s Landing, will break from post position No. 8 under jockey Jon Court.
Among the competitors to Warrior’s Club in the Kelly’s Landing are Rialto Racing Stables, Southern Springs Stables and Head of Plains Partners’ Aristides Stakes (Listed) runner-up Petrov (23-5-4-3—$589,827), Robert LaPenta and Harry Rosenblum’s multiple stakes winner Uncontested (16-5-1-1—$397,607) and Bernard Racing’s recent 5 ½-length allowance winner Transatlantic Kiss (12-4-2-2—$159,933).
The field for the Kelly’s Landing from the rail out (with jockey and trainer): Uncontested (Miguel Mena, Tom Amoss); Elusive Mischief (Chris Landeros, Ian Wilkes); Control Stake (Ricardo Santana Jr., Greg Foley); California Night (Tyler Gaffalione, Mike Maker); Line Judge (Corey Lanerie, Peter Miller); Kowboy Karma (Gabriel Saez, Larry Jones); Petrov (Jack Gilligan, Ron Moquett); Warrior’s Club (Court, Lukas); and Transatlantic Kiss (Brian Hernandez Jr., Foley).
The race is named in honor of Summerplace Farm’s Kelly’s Landing, who earned $1,853,831 from a record of 10-3-2 in 27 starts between 2004-09 for trainer Eddie Kenneally. The gelding won the six-furlong Aristides Handicap (GIII) at Churchill Downs in 2005 by stopping the teletimer in a track record 1:07.55 (since eclipsed). His biggest victory came in the 2007 Dubai Golden Shaheen at Nad Al Sheba in the United Arab Emirates. Kelly’s Landing also won the 2006 Phoenix (GIII) at Keeneland and 2007 Mr. Prospector Handicap (GIII) at Gulfstream Park.