BY BROCK SHERIDAN
Trainer Mike Maker has sent Max K. O. to Ellis Park in search of his second stakes victory of the year as the 7-year-old Florida-bred is among 12 entered for the $200,000 Kentucky Downs Preview Mint Millions Turf Mile for 3-year-olds and older.
A winner of the $100,000 Mr. Steele going a mile-and-a-sixteenth at Gulfstream Park on May 14, Max K. O. since finished fifth after setting the pace in the $76,000 Brooks Field Mile won by Fuerteventura at Canterbury Park on June 21. Max K. O. will again face Fuerteventura, who is the 5-2 favorite in the Preview Mint Millions Turf Mile.
Max K. O. will be trying to win his third start in six tries this year having also won a $50,000 claiming going a mile on the turf at Gulfstream Park on Feb. 26.
Owned by Ten Twenty Racing, Max K. O. has won 12 of 44 starts during his long career while finishing second six times and third twice. By J P’s Gusto out of Funky Fraulein, by Sligo Bay (Ire), Max K. O. was bred by Span Investments and has earned $535,715 in his career.
He is 6-1 on the morning line and Gerado Corrales will ride Max K. O. from the outside post 12.
Fuerteventura will be trying to win his third straight in the Preview Mint Millions Turf Mile as he won a second level, $40,000 optional claiming going a mile-and-a-sixteenth on the turf at Horseshoe Indianapolis on May 29 prior to winning the Brooks Field.
The son of Summer Front out of Casanova Striker, by Smart Strike has won half of his 10 career starts with two seconds while earning $276,444 for owner Robert V. La Penta and Brereton C. Jones.
Trainer Jonathan Thomas has given the riding assignment on Fuerteventura to Florent Geroux, who will guide the 4-year-old gelding from post seven.
Set at 3-1 in the program is Gray’s Fable for trainer Brian Lynch.
The 8-year-old gelding by Gio Ponti makes his first start since a second-place finish to Camp Hope in an upper level, $175,000 optional claiming going a mile on the turf at Churchill Downs on June 1.
Gray’s Fable will be in search of his first win of the year having finished second one other time in an upper level, $75,000 optional claiming won by Souper Dormy going a mile on the turf at Gulf-stream Park on Feb. 10.
Owned by Steve Goldfine, Kari Provost and Jeff Zionis, Gray’s Fable sports a career record of six wins in 27 starts with four seconds and four thirds with earnings of $467,232.
Declan Cannon has the riding assignment on Gray’s Fable, who will break from post four.
Others set for the Preview Mint Millions Turf Mile are Minnesota Ready with jockey Corey Lanerie, Trafalgar will be ridden by Edgar Morales, James Graham has the assignment to ride Big Dreaming, Heaven Street has Cristian Torres in the irons, Hozier and jockey Alex Achard, Greyes Creek with pilot Alex Beschizza, Play Action Pass with Joseph D. Ramos named to ride, Santos Dumont and jockey Francisco Arrieta and Orlando Mojica will be aboard Underdressed.