BY BROCK SHERIDAN
Damon’s Mound will make his sixth start at his fifth different track this year when the Florida-bred colt goes for his second straight stakes victory in the Grade 2 Gallant Bob at Parx Racing Saturday. The $400,000 Gallant Bob has attracted a field of 10 3-year-olds who will sprint six furlongs with Damon’s Mound set at 4-1 on the morning line.
Having run in four stakes this year at Keeneland, Churchill Downs, Ellis Park and Charles Town, Damon’s Mound won his first added-money test of 2023 last out with a two-lengths score in the $300,000 Robert Hilton Memorial going seven furlongs at Charles Town on Aug. 25. That was the first added-money victory for the bay son of Girvin since winning the Grade 2 Saratoga Special at Saratoga Race Course last year in August.
Trained by Michelle Lovell, for Michele and Cliff Love, Damon’s Mound has recently come into top form after starting the year slow. He finished eleventh in the $246,000 Palisades won by Gaslight Dancer sprinting five-and-a-half furlongs on the turf at Keeneland on April 16 before coming in ninth behind winner General Jim in the Grade 2 Pat Day Mile at Churchill on May 6. He was then second to Tumbarumba in a second-level, $125,000 optional claiming at Churchill on June 4 then fourth in the $171,000 Maxfield won by Gallant Bob morning line favorite Ryvit at Ellis Park on June 2.
Damon’s Mound is out of San Antonio Stroll, by Stroll and was bred by Cliff Love. He has three wins and a second in eight career starts with earnings of $379,700 and Junior Alvarado will ride the bay colt from post four.
Ryvit and jockey Tyler Gaffalione will break from post nine and look to avenge their fifth-place finish in the Robert Hilton.
Earlier this year, Ryvit rattled off five straight victories starting with a first level, $100,000 optional claiming score at Oaklawn Park on April 14. He then won the $150,000 Bachelor at Oaklawn on April 29, the Grade 3 Chick Lang at Pimlico on May 20 and the Maxfield before ending his streak with a fifth-place finish behind winner New York Thunder in the Grade 2 Amsterdam at Saratoga.
Ryvit is by Competitive Edge out of She Is Bedazzling, by Medaglia d’Oro and has won half of his 10 career starts with a second and a third while banking $470,684.
Ryvit is 5-2 on the morning line.
Others set for the Gallant Bob are Ninetypercentmaddie with jockey Paco Lopez, Dreaming of Kona and rider Scott Spieth, Freedom Road will be ridden by Florent Geroux, Nautical Star has Irad Ortiz Jr. named to ride, Praetorian Guard will carry Dexter Haddock, John Velazquez rides Sir Lancelot, Depoli and jockey Joseph Trejos and Mychel Sanchez has the mount on Gordian Knot.
Return to Sept. 22 issue of Wire to Wire