||Carve and Tapiture Square Off Again, This Time in the 19th Running of the Grade 3 Lone Star Park Handicap Monday at Lone Star Park
Grand Prairie, Texas (Sunday, May 24, 2015) - The 19th renewal of the Grade 3, $200,000 Lone Star Park Handicap is for three-year-olds and up going a mile and a sixteenth on the main track. The field is small but stellar. Scheduled as the ninth race on the card of 10 set for Memorial Day, Monday, May 25, it's set to go at 5:19 p.m. Grandstand gates open at 11:30 a.m. First race post is 1:35 p.m.
Carve will face off for the fourth time with rival Tapiture in the Lone Star Park Handicap Monday at Lone Star Park. They both will take on local horse Texas Air, who won the Grade 3 Texas Mile a couple of weeks ago and is seeking a win in the Handicap to complete his quest for the Texas Two Step. That's what the feat of winning both the Texas Mile and Lone Star Park Handicap in a single season has become known as. If successful, Texas Air would join the elite group of three others that have swept both races, Dixie Dot Com in 2001, Master Rick in 2013, and Grand Contender in 2013.
Claimed in January of 2013 by Michael Langford, Carve has since become a graded stakes winner with earnings of $904,915. Trained by Brad Cox, the five-year-old gelding by First Samurai, ships here from Churchill Downs.
Carve the morning line favorite at 6-5, will carry high weight of 122 pounds. After a sixth placed finish in the Breeders' Cup Mile at Santa Anita last October, he went to Oaklawn Park and won his next out there in the Fifth Season Stakes last January. His next attempt was a fourth place finish in the Grade 3 Razorback Handicap, and in his most recent, he placed in the Grade 2 Oaklawn Handicap.
Tapiture has been assigned odds of 7-5 on the morning line for Mondays feature. The four-year-old Tapit colt has amassed a bankroll of $1,455,560. Each of his four wins from 12 career starts were in graded stakes. Trained by Lone Star Park's all-time leader Steve Asmussen, Tapiture is a homebred of Winchell Thoroughbreds, LLC.
Tapiture's two most recent starts were in the Grade 2 Oaklawn Handicap in April and the Grade 3 Razorback Handicap in March, both at Oaklawn Park. Rival Carve finished one place better in each of those races. Three races back, Tapiture placed by one and a quarter lengths behind Goldenscents in the Breeders' Cup Mile at Santa Anita last October. Carve, as mentioned, was a well beaten sixth.
Either one of these two will have to hold off the Texas-bred, Texas Air who has his sights on the sweep and is ready to rock and roll.
The field from the rail out for the 19th running or the Grade 3 Lone Star Park Handicap followed by jockey and morning line odds is: Endurance (Iram Vargas Diego, 20-1); Majestic City (Charles C. Lopez, 8-1); Cy Seven (David Cabrera, 20-1); Texas Air (Quincy Hamilton, 6-1); Tapiture (Ricardo Santana, Jr., 7-5); and Carve (Jesus Lopez Castanon, 6-5).
The Handicap is the second leg of the Global Gaming Triple. The GGT links the Texas Mile and the Lone Star Park Handicap with the Governor's Cup at Remington Park.