G3 Winner My Prankster Set to Return in $100,000 Sir Shackleton
Among 10 Stakes, Five Graded, Worth $2.35 Million on Derby Day
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – Robert and Lawana Low’s My Prankster, unraced since last summer, is set to launch his comeback where he became a graded-stakes winner last summer in Saturday’s $100,000 Sir Shackleton at Gulfstream Park.
The 11th running of the seven-furlong Sir Shackleton for 4-year-olds and up is the fifth of 10 stakes, five graded, worth $2.35 million in purses on a spectacular 14-race program anchored by the $1 million Curlin Florida Derby (G1) presented by Hill ‘n’ Dale Farms at Xalapa for 3-year-olds.
Post time is 11:30 a.m. EST. The Orchid goes as Race 9 (3:31 p.m.) with the Florida Derby (6:40 p.m.) part of a national CNBC broadcast from 6 to 7 p.m.
My Prankster, a 4-year-old Into Mischief colt, shows 11 timed works since mid-January for Hall of Fame trainer Todd Pletcher at Palm Beach Downs, most recently going a half-mile in 49.68 seconds March 25, fifth-fastest of 21 horses.
“We’ve been getting positive reports from Todd. He’s a horse that we gave some time off kind of midway through last year and just turned him out and let him take a little bit of a breather,” the Lows’ racing manager, Jacob West, said. “He had a little bit of a rough campaign as far as back-to-back to back races. He didn’t have a break there for a while. [We were] just freshening him up and looking for a place to jump back in, hopefully get a good solid year started and have a healthy campaign.”
My Prankster burst on the racing scene with a 10-length debut victory in August 2021 at Saratoga, finishing fourth to Jack Christopher second time out in the Champagne (G1). My Prankster came to Gulfstream last winter to win a six-furlong optional claiming allowance in December 2021 and the seven-furlong Swale (G3) last February, both by a half-length.
Following the Swale My Prankster went winless in four starts, running third behind Jack Christopher in the Pat Day Mile (G2) and respectively second and fifth to Gunite in the Maxfield at Churchill Downs and Amsterdam (G2) at Saratoga before going to the sidelines.
“To break his maiden at Saratoga first time out like he did and then to put it all together there in the Swale was great,” West said. “He got a little unlucky in some of his other races, to be quite honest. He’s run against some really good horses, like Jack Christopher and Gunite and some others, but he’s a solid, solid horse and he always tries and shows up.”
Luiz Saez gets the riding assignment from Post 2 in a field of nine. Saez was aboard for both wins last winter, My Prankster’s only previous races at Gulfstream.
“I think at the end of the day the saying ‘horses for courses’ is true. We know he loves running out of his stall there from Todd’s training hub at Palm Beach Downs and shipping to Gulfstream. He’ll have a regular rider on his back and being familiar with the surroundings and the setting is the best way to get him started back,” West said. “[We’ll] keep our fingers crossed and hopefully it’s a launching pad for some bigger and better things down the line.”
Each of the top two finishers from last year’s Sir Shackleton, Weyburn and Collaborate, are back. Winner of the 2021 Gotham (G3), Weyburn beat Collaborate by 2 ½ lengths in his most recent win, returning from a six-month layoff to run second in a seven-furlong optional claimer March 4.
Fifth in the 2021 Florida Derby, Collaborate owns five wins, one second and two thirds from 13 career races at Gulfstream. Claimed for $35,000 out of a Jan. 5 victory going seven-eighths, the 5-year-old son of Into Mischief exits a popular half-length triumph in a six-furlong allowance March 16.
Stonehedge homebred Dean Delivers shortens up after running third in the Fred Hooper (G3) Jan. 28 and fourth in the Gulfstream Park Mile (G2) March 4, both times to Endorsed. Five times stakes-placed, the 4-year-old Cajun Breeze gelding was second to My Prankster in the Swale and was beaten 2 ¼ lengths when second in the Dec. 31 Mr. Prospector (G3) behind Sibelius, who captured the $2 million Golden Shaheen (G1) March 25 in Dubai.
“He’s run really hard and run real consistent. I think he can run a mile, but against just a little lesser horse. So, we’re going to shorten him up to seven-eighths and see what happens,” trainer Michael Yates said. “He looks fabulous. He’s moving really well. His weight’s good. He couldn’t be doing any better.”
Dean Delivers will break from the rail with regular rider Miguel Vasquez aboard.
“He’s just a little shy of being a really top horse,” Yates said. “Certainly we’ll be delighted not to run against Endorsed. That horse is so legit. [Trainer Mike] Maker has done really well with that horse and he’s gotten really good and I think we’ve yet to see his best to come. I think he’s moving up to the top of the game.”
Multiple stakes winners Octane and Steal Sunshine; Celestial Glaze, riding a two-race win streak; Paco’s Pico, fifth to Sibelius in the Feb. 11 Pelican at Tampa Bay Downs; and 2022 Steve Sexton Mile (G3) runner-up Mish complete the field.