String King the One to Beat in Louisiana Turf

String King the One to Beat in Louisiana Turf

Category : News - Fri 12/12/2014 - 19:04 EST

The $100,000 Louisiana Champions Day Turf features a field of ten set to go a mile and a sixteenth at Fair Grounds December 13.

String King is the 9/5 morning line favorite for trainer Charles Smith, and is the clear-cut class of the field.  String King won the Louisiana Turf in 2013 and barely missed winning the Louisiana Classic in 2014 on Champions Day.  The six year-old gelding is 10 for 26 on the turf in his career including 4 for 9 at Fair Grounds.  String King returned from a two and a half month layoff November 23 to run second in a $35,000 optional claiming event that was rained off the turf, but that race might have signaled that String King is as good as ever given the career-best 100 Beyer Figure he earned in defeat. 

Benwill tries to maintain top form 

Benwill (7/2) also earned a career-best number in his last start – a 96 Beyer in the Unbridled Stakes September 6 at Louisiana Downs.  Benwill has 5 wins in 12 career starts on the grass, but has not fared well over the Fair Grounds lawn (1 for 6, top Beyer of 82).  Trainer Mike Burgess connects with 25% of his starters returning from layoffs of 61-180 days, but Benwill will need to show up with something close to his best effort in order to threaten String King who has beaten him three straight times.

Tiger Run could pull the upset 

Well’s Gold (6/1) will break from the far outside, but has enough speed and class to keep things interesting.  Tiger Run (20/1) is an intriguing long-shot.  In his last turf start he was beaten just three quarters of a length by String King. 

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