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Gulfstream Park West News & Notes; Trainer Eddie Plesa Jr. Gears Up for Year-Round South Florida Presence

Nov 10, 2017
FSS Heroine Starship Bonita Back in Action on Saturday’s Preview Card
Saturday, Sunday First-Race Post Times Set for 12 p.m.
Trainer Eddie Plesa Jr. Gears Up for Year-Round South Florida Presence 
Puerto Rico Triple Crown Winner Justiciero Arrives At Gulfstream

            
MIAMI GARDENS, FL – Starship Bonita, the star 2-year-old filly of the 2017 FTBOA Florida Sire Stakes Series at Gulfstream Park, is set for a return to action in Saturday’s $75,000 Juvenile Fillies Sprint at Gulfstream Park West.
            
The Juvenile Fillies Sprint will be one of eight $75,000 stakes for Florida-bred horses on the Millions Preview Program, highlighted by the Millions Classic Preview, a prep for the Sunshine Millions Classic, the feature of the Jan. 20 Sunshine Millions card at Gulfstream.  First-race post time Saturday and Sunday is set for 12 p.m.
            
Starship Bonita captured the $200,000 FSS Susan’s Girl Division at seven furlongs Sept. 2 and the $300,000 FSS My Dear Girl Division at 1 1/16-miles Sept. 30. Saturday’s Juvenile Fillies Sprint will be contested by seven fillies at 6 ½ furlongs.
            
“I put some speed back in her. I don’t think two-turns is her game. We had to train her differently to go two turns. The way she rated in the race and got over the track, it worked good,” trainer Steve Dwoskin said. “I think her distance is six furlongs to a mile. I don’t think she wants two turns.”
            
After Starship Bonita caught his eye at the 2017 OBS March sale, Dwoskin encouraged owner Laurence Leavy, a.k.a. Marlins Man, to buy the daughter of Gone Astray for his Starship Stables. The $72,000 purchase has proven to be a wise investment.
            
“She is a neat filly. She does everything right. She’s an easy learner and does everything you ask her,” Dwoskin said. “She wanted to run in the beginning and we taught her to relax and rate. She did it pretty kind.”
            
Carlos Montalvo has the return mount aboard the multiple-stakes winner.

Eddie Plesa Jr. Gears Up for Year-Round South Florida Presence
            

A South Florida mainstay for many years, trainer Eddie Plesa Jr. is planning to once again have a year-round presence at Gulfstream Park and Gulfstream Park West after several seasons of summering at Monmouth Park, the mid-Atlantic and New York.
            
“It looks like I’m going to stay here for the summer. I’m gearing up for year-round racing down here and be a little more active with Florida breds,” said Plesa, who has saddled the winners of 2,321 races and $56 million in purses.
            
Plesa is scheduled to saddle a pair of Florida-bred horses on Saturday’s Millions Preview card at Gulfstream Park West, including Mr. Jordan in the Millions Classic Preview and April Gaze in the Millions Distaff Preview.
            
Mr. Jordan, a multiple-stakes winner with more than $500,000 in earnings, captured the Classic Preview by 3 ¾ lengths last year and is rated as the 5-2 morning-line favorite in Saturday’s 1 1/16-mile feature.
            
April Gaze, rated 15-1 in the morning line for the Distaff Preview, returned to winning form in her most recent start a Monmouth after going winless in seven starts since capturing the Sophomore Fillies Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs in April 2016.
            
“We gave her some time off at the farm for a while for some R & R. She came back and ran some pretty strong races,” said Plesa, who saddled the daughter of High Cotton for her maiden victory at Gulfstream eight days prior to her stakes victory at Tampa. “She’s a Florida-bred. She’s here and she won a Florida-bred stake in the past, so it makes sense to try her in this race to see where we stack up.”
         
Puerto Rico Triple Crown Winner Justiciero Arrives At Gulfstream

            
Justiciero, the 2017 Puerto Rico Triple Crown champion, arrived at Gulfstream Park Thursday evening to begin preparations for a scheduled start in the $300,000 Clasico del Caribe, one of five races worth $600,000 on the Dec. 9 Clasico Internacional del Caribe program.
            
The 3-year-old son of Coach Billy G, one of four horses trained by Raymond Morales that arrived from Puerto Rico, is riding a four-race winning streak at Camarero, where he captured the Derby Puertorriquero (G1), Copa Gobernado (G1) and Copa San Juan (G1) by a combined 14 ½ lengths before registering a 9 ¾-length triumph in the Clasico Antonio Mongil Jr. Stakes (G2).
 



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