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Jim Dandy Stakes Will Include War of Will, Tacitus
War of Will and Tacticus will head a field of this year’s six best 3-year-olds in the $600,000 Jim Dandy Stakes Presented by NYRA Bets (G2) at Saratoga Race Course on Saturday. After a series of cancellations in the region last week due to an extreme heatwave, the temperatures are set to be much cooler this weekend.
Two leading performers from the 2019 Triple Crown trail will run in the Jim Dandy, Tacitus and War of Will. They are coming off of seven weeks of rest after the Belmont Stakes Presented by NYRA Bets (G1). Their running in the Jim Dandy, a 1 1/8-mile race, will be a precursor to the much anticipated $1.25 million Runhappy Travers Stakes (G1) at Saratoga on Aug. 24.
Tacitus, from Juddmonte Farms, placed second in the Belmont Stakes and third in the Kentucky Derby. The other horse everyone is looking to, War of Will, won the Gary Barber’s Preakness Stakes (G1) and was unplaced in the other two legs of the Triple Crown.
War Of Will
War of Will was the horse that caused all of the drama at the Kentucky Derby after bumping with Maximum Security, which caused the first disqualification due to a bump in the Kentucky Derby’s 145-year history.
He is the son of War Front, and after the incident at the Kentucky Derby, he went on the win the Preakness with a 1 1/4-length lead. After that, he didn’t perform well in the Belmont Stakes, where he finished ninth at 7-2 odds. Because of that performance, War of Will took some time to rest in the summer.
Mark Casse, trainer of War of WIll, spoke about the horse and the upcoming race.
“The Jim Dandy is a big race, It’s at Saratoga, and I’d love to add it to his résumé.
“He’s doing great. I’m really happy with the way he’s come out of his short little rest, and he’s training super.”
War of WIll has won four out of 11 starts, and his lifetime earnings are currently at $1,491,569. He was bought for $298,550 from Oak Tree Farm’s consignment to the 2018 Arqana May 2-Year-Old Breeze-Up Sale.
Tacitus is the other horse people are looking at in the upcoming Jim Dandy. He finished second in the Belmont Stakes as the 9-5 favorite, and in the Test of the Champion on June 8, he finished a length behind Casse’s Sir Winston.
“He’s doing fine,” Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott said. “He was doing very good into the Belmont, and he seems to be doing very well now. I wouldn’t say there’s been any huge change in him.”
Since posting a maiden win in his second start, Tacitus has three wins in his past five starts. Some of his victories are the Wood Memorial Stakes Presented by NYRA Bets (G2) and Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby (G2).
Tactitus is the homebred son of Tapit out of the champion filly Close Hatches.
The Rest of the Field
Also in the field is WinStar Farm’s Global Campaign, who has not raced since May 11 when he won the Peter Pan Stakes (G2) at Belmont Park by 1 1/4 lengths.
Tax is among the six, and he was a runner in the Belmont Stakes, where he finished fourth. The horse was suffering from a foot injury prior to the race.
Centennial Farms’ Mihos finished fourth in the Dwyer Stakes (G3), and Alex and JoAnn Lieblong’s Laughing Fox finished fifth in the Preakness. They will both be competing in the Jim Dandy.
The entire field of the Jim Dandy Stakes Presented by NYRA Bets (G2) in their post order is Laughing Fox (Ricardo Santana, Jr.); Tax (Irad Ortiz, Jr.); Mihos (Junior Alvarado); Global Campaign (Luis Saez); Tacitus (Jose L. Ortiz); War of Will (Tyler Gaffalione).