Set stays perfect in Cutler Bay Stakes

Saturday, March 30th, 2024

Set, a son of Oscar Performance bred by Blue Chip Bloodstock, wins Saturday’s Cutler Bay Stakes. Lauren King/Gulfstream Park Photo.

Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners’ and Gary Barber’s Set stayed undefeated Saturday with a victory in the $125,000 Cutler Bay to kick off the stakes portion of the Florida Derby Day card at Gulfstream Park.

Bred by Blue Chip Bloodstock, the son of Oscar Performance added the 7 1/2-furlong turf stakes to his victory at the same trip February 24 at Gulfstream. The 3-5 favorite in the field of seven, Set raced in second early under Emisael Jaramillo as King Julien set the pace. King Julien led by a length through the opening quarter-mile in :24.14 and a half-length through the half in :47.83 over the firm turf.

King Julien didn’t have much left to hold off Set around the turn as the New York-bred quickly challenged and took over by the time the field reached the stretch. The only pressure Set endured down the was from his own jockey’s urging with no serious challenges coming from the rest of the field. Set won by 1 1/4 lengths over Double Your Money in 1:28.10.

Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners and Barber purchased Set for $150,000 at last year’s OBS April 2-year-olds in training sale from consignor Gene Recio.

Trained by Mark Casse, Set is out of the Irish-bred Strategic Prince daughter Three Am Tour, who won three races in her career. Set is the second stakes performer for the mare, who is also the dam of the New York-bred stakes-placed Busy Morning. Overall, she has produced three winners from four to race.

“He trained really well going into his first race, and we were pretty high on him,” said Casse’s assistant Nick Tomlinson. “We weren’t 100 percent sure if he was fit enough but he still got there. He trained wonderfully again coming into this race. Jaramillo came into the paddock and said that there was some speed on the inside. I said, ‘It’s up to you. You know him best.’ He sat off them, made a nice run and kept on with it.

“He’s a lovely horse. … I think as everybody knows Graham [Motion] had him before us and he gave him a lovely foundation, so a lot of the credit has to go to his crew, as well. Lovely horse, bright future, and we’re excited to see what happens.”

Three Am Tour is out of a half-sister to the British stakes placed Falak with her granddam a three-quarter sister to top broodmare Maryinsky. The pedigree also includes Grade 1 Preakness Stakes winner and Grade 1 Maker’s Mark Mile winner War of Will among the 10 Grade 1 winners under Set’s fourth dam Minnie Hauk.

Three AM Tour produced a colt from the first crop of Hidden Lake Farm’s Galilean last year before returning to Oscar Performance for a full sibling to Set.

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