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B Cup Classic: Mucho Macho Man in focus

by Geir Stabell / Globeform
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MUCHO MACHO MAN, who was a June foal, has improved markedly from three to four, and is now one of the best performers in North America. Not that he was anonymous in his classic season, he ran a game third behind Animal Kingdom and Nehro in the 2011 Kentucky Derby (G1). At his best, he can match strides with anyone currently around, and he is an interesting Classic contender.

The son of Macho Uno began this season with two excellent wins at Gulfstream Park; beating Ron the Greek comprehensively by 1 lengths in the Sunshine Millions Classic over 9 furlongs in January, and denying last year's winner Tackleberry a repeat win when coming home 2 lengths in front of him in the one-mile Gulfstream Park Handicap (G2) in March. Mucho Macho Man raced prominently throughout in these races, and was much the best on both occasions. Starting as one of the biggest favorites on Kentucky Oaks day, when facing seven rivals in the Alysheba Stakes (G2), he disappointed badly and came him a well beaten third, behind Successful Dan and Fort Larned. A two-month break followed, leading up to the Suburbahn Handicap (G2) over 9 furlongs at Belmont Park in July.

Mucho Macho Man bounced right back in this race. After racing in the first two all the way around the Belmont oval, he kicked away in the straight to win by 2 lengths from Hymn Book, with Trickmeister third, To Honor and Serve fourth and Stay Thirsty fifth. It was a very solid performance, as was Mucho Macho Man's second in the Woodward Stakes (G1) at Saratoga nearly two months later. To Honor and Serve gained his revenge that day, and looked value for a bit more than the neck margin, but in Mucho Macho Man's defense; perhaps he was held a bit too far back early on. This performance and his wins in the Sunshine Millions and Suburban show that Mucho Macho Man is at his best fresh. He will be coming into the Classic off another two-month rest and he is in with a winning chance.

Published: 2012-10-28 04:21:51

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