Saturday’s Rainbow 6 Jackpot Pool Guaranteed at $1 Million
$1 Million Florida Derby (G1) Featuring Forte Anchors Sequence
Guaranteed Pools for Saturday’s Late Multi-Race Wagers
Late Pick 5 -- $1 Million; Late Pick 4 -- $750,000
Saturday’s First-Race Post Time Set at 11:30 a.m.
Mandatory Rainbow 6 Payout Set for Sunday
HALLANDALE BEACH, FL – The 20-cent Rainbow 6 gross jackpot pool will be guaranteed at $1 million on Saturday’s Curlin Florida Derby program at Gulfstream Park, where the popular multi-race wager went unsolved Friday for the 18th consecutive racing day following a March 5 mandatory payout.
The Rainbow 6 sequence will span Races 9-14, anchored by the $1 million Curlin Florida Derby (G1) presented by Hill ‘n’ Dale Farms at Xalapa, which will be contested by a full field of 12 3-year-olds featuring Forte, the 4-5 morning-line favorite trained by Hall of Famer Todd Pletcher.
Forte, the 2022 champion juvenile male, is riding a four-race winning streak that includes impressive performances in the Hopeful (G1) at Saratoga, Breeders’ Futurity (G1) and the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) at Keeneland, as well as the March 4 Fountain of Youth (G2) at Gulfstream.
First-race post time is set for 11:30 a.m. Silks, Gulfstream’s simulcast facility and all areas off the clubhouse open at 10 a.m.
The Rainbow 6 sequence will be comprised of six stakes on a 14-race program with 10 total stakes, five graded, worth $2.35 million in purses.
The $100,000 Sir Shackleton, a seven-furlong sprint for older horses, will kick off the sequence in Race 9. Pletcher-trained My Prankster, the 5-2 morning-line favorite in a field of nine, is 2-for-2 at Gulfstream, where he won the 2022 Swale (G3). Michael Yates-trained ultra-consistent Dean Delivers, who has finished first or second in nine of 13 career starts, is coming off three solid efforts in graded company.
A field of 10 older fillies and mares has been assembled for the $150,000 Sand Springs, a 1 1/16-mile turf stakes in Race 10. Chad Brown-trained Marketsegmentation, a sparkling optional claiming allowance winner at Gulfstream prior to a third-place finish in the Endeavor (G3) at Tampa, is the 2-1 morning-line favorite in a highly competitive race that includes Brendan Walsh-trained Princess Theorem, who finished a troubled third in the Honey Fox (G3) last time out following a sharp optional claiming allowance score. Trainer Graham Motion unveils Jouza, an Irish import who won three of seven starts in Europe. Mark Casse-trained Souper Hoity Toity, a graded-stakes winner on turf and Tapeta at Woodbine last season, is set to make her 2023 debut.
The $100,000 Sanibel Island, a 7 ½-furlong turf race for 3-year-old fillies, could well be a popular ‘spread’ event in Race 11 for Rainbow 6 wagerers. A well-matched field of 10 promising sophomore fillies could prove challenging for handicappers. Love Appeals, who won at first asking last time out, and Breath Away, a debut winner who was beaten by a nose on Tapeta next out, will represent trainer Christophe Clement. Jonathan Thomas will send out Mrs. Astor, an impressive maiden winner in her third start. Aunt Shirley, who hasn’t raced since finishing off the board in the Spinaway (G1) at Saratoga, is scheduled to make her first start on turf and for Pletcher.
Pletcher will double up in Race 12 for the $250,000 Gulfstream Park Oaks (G2), a 1 1/16-mile stakes for 3-year-old fillies, with Miracle, who finished a close second in the Rachel Alexandra (G2) at Fair Grounds last out, and Atomically, who finished third in the Forward Gal (G3) in her first 2023 start. Michael Yates-trained Dorth Vader, who pulled off a 46-1 upset in the Davona Dale (G2) last out, is also prominent in the eight-horse field.
A full field of older horses will contest the $150,000 Appleton, a mile turf stakes, in Race 13. Pletcher will send out Steady On, who was beaten a half-length by stablemate Emmanuel in the Canadian Turf (G3). Fort Washington, trained by Hall of Famer Shug McGaughey, finished a neck behind Steady On following a late rally in the Canadian Turf. Jorge Delgado-trained Winfromwithin, who finished second behind Emmanuel in the Tampa Bay (G3), is also among the leading contenders in a solid field.
Forte will be the star attraction in the Florida Derby in Race 14 while facing 11 rivals, including four colts trained by Saffie Joseph Jr., who saddled White Abarrio for a win in last year’s running. Among Forte’s more formidable rivals are Fort Bragg, a Southern California shipper who finished fifth in the San Felipe (G2) at Santa Anita; Dale Romans-trained Cyclone Mischief, who finished third behind Forte in the Fountain of Youth after setting the pace into the stretch; Gustavo Delgado-trained Mage, a lightly raced colt who finished a troubled fourth in the Fountain of Youth in only his second career start; and Danny Gargan-trained Dubyuhnell, who captured the Remsen (G2) last season.
The Rainbow 6 jackpot is paid out when there is a single unique ticket sold with all six winners. On days when there is no unique ticket, 70 percent of that day’s pool goes back to those bettors holding tickets with the most winners, while 30 percent is carried over to the jackpot pool.
On Saturday’s Florida Derby program, the Late Pick 5 pool will be guaranteed at $1 million, while the Late Pick 4 pool will be guaranteed at $750,000. The Late Pick 5 will span Races 10-14, while the Late Pick 4 will span Races 11-14. The Florida Derby will anchor both sequences.
There will also be a Super Hi-5 carryover of $5,724.05 starting in Race 1.
A Rainbow 6 mandatory payout is scheduled for Sunday, the last day of the Championship Meet. Should the Rainbow go unsolved through Saturday’s Florida Derby Day program, the pool is expected to grow to $5 million-plus Monday.
Who’s Hot: Jockey Edgard Zayas rode two winners Friday, Read On ($8.60) in Race 4 and Drum Roll ($9.80) in Race 9.