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An early shakedown of a mixed-up division
Whitney Tower
September 05, 1966
Only five starters turned out for the Hopeful Stakes at Saratoga, a race that often establishes a favorite for the 2-year-old championship, but the winner overcame an odds-on three-horse entry in impressive style
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September 05, 1966

An Early Shakedown Of A Mixed-up Division

Only five starters turned out for the Hopeful Stakes at Saratoga, a race that often establishes a favorite for the 2-year-old championship, but the winner overcame an odds-on three-horse entry in impressive style

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"You've got to have your best colts in competition by now if you hope to get anything later on, or else the class will pass you by," says Eddie Neloy, who has a whole barnful of youngsters besides the three he threw into the Hopeful field. One is Successor, a full brother to Bold Lad, who may be better than either Great Power or Top Bid. George Widener has Yorkville, winner of the Sanford, who is temporarily out with bucked shins, as is Greentree Stable's Stamp Act. Another Greentree colt, Balthazar, may show promise after he recovers from the slight fever that made it necessary to scratch him from the Hopeful. In Reality, who finished second to Great Power in the Sapling at Monmouth Park, now will have to be tested against Bold Hour before being judged. One of the most impressive performances at Saratoga was turned in by a Florida-bred colt named Dr. Fager, who runs for Trainer Johnny Nerud in the silks of W.L. McKnight. Dr. Fager, who is by Rough 'n Tumble, ran the fastest six furlongs of any 2-year-old at Saratoga (1:10[2/5]), and may be the sleeper of the whole pack. Herbert Allen's Favorable Turn, a Turn-to colt, won the Saratoga Special and would have tested the others in the Hopeful were it not for a fever that hit him the day before the race.

Not to be counted out yet are Native Prince and Great White Way in the East, and such Chicago-based runners as Turma-Now, Olympia Site and Forgotten Dreams, the winner of the Hollywood Juvenile over previously unbeaten Tumble Wind. All in all, it is still a mixed-up division. Saratoga's Hopeful proved only that Bert Mulholland, on his 83rd birthday, knew how to handle the Phippses.

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