HALLANDALE BEACH, FL—Undefeated Florida-bred Bentornato breezed six furlongs in 1:13.45 Saturday at Palm Meadows Training Center in preparation for a bid to sweep the 2023 FTBOA Florida Sire Stakes series at Gulfstream Park in the $300,000 In Reality Dec. 2.

“He breezed so, so good,” trainer Jose D’Angelo said following the workout at Gulfstream’s satellite training facility in Palm Beach County.

The mile-and-a-sixteenth In Reality, the finale of the series for 2-year-olds sired by stallions standing in Florida, will be Bentoranto’s first race around two turns.

“We’ve been working very hard at stretching him out, and he’s responded very well,” D’Angelo said. “The way we are galloping him every morning is for this kind of distance, and he has responded. I think he’s ready to run the distance.”

Leon King Stable Corp.’s Bentornato has three stakes victories on his unblemished four-race resume. After rallying for a narrow debut victory at five furlongs July 1, the son of Bridlewood Farm stallion Valiant Minister overcame early bumping to register an eye-catching four-and-a-quarter-length, front-running score in six-furlong Proud Man Aug. 12. He came right back with a dominating seven-and-a-half-length front-running win in the six-furlong Florida Sire Stakes Dr. Fager before scoring by two-and-three-quarters lengths in the seven-furlong Florida Sire Stakes Affirmed.

Bentornato, who has raced somewhat greenly despite winning all four of his races by open lengths, has impressed D’Angelo with his preparation for the In Reality.

“For this race, he’s becoming more focused and keeping his mind on business,” D’Angelo said. “He’s acting more professional going to the track and going back to the barn.”


Mattingly Tunes Up for Florida Sire Stakes Finale on Gulfstream Synthetic

At Gulfstream Park, Mattingly, who finished second in the Affirmed in his dirt debut, breezed five furlongs on the synthetic course in 1:01.69 Saturday morning in preparation for the $300,000 In Reality Dec. 2

“It was a maintenance work. Everything went according to plan,” trainer Joe Orseno said. “Slow in the beginning, and then he picked it up. He galloped out strong.”

The son of Bucchero had excelled on synthetic prior to the Affirmed, winning the $90,000 Hollywood Beach on Sept. 30 and finished second behind multiple-stakes winner No Nay Mets (Ire) in the $100,000 Royal Palm Juvenile in May.

Return to Nov. 19 issue of Wire to Wire