By Emily Shields
Blinkers will come off Grade 1 Woodbine Mile winner El Tormenta in the Saturday feature at Gulfstream Park, the $75,000 Sunshine Forever Stakes over 1 1/16 miles on grass. The race drew 12, including 2019 Preakness Stakes (G1) hero War of Will.
El Tormenta jumped into the spotlight when the son of Stormy Atlantic won the Woodbine Mile last September at 44-1. Before that he had been a stakes winner over that course, but aside from one trip to Keeneland had never shipped until he ran sixth against some of the best in the world in the Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) at Santa Anita. He ran well enough that day, but was a disappointing last in the Appleton (G3) here in his 2020 debut March 28.
War of Will has not won since taking last year’s Preakness, but was once considered the cream of his crop. The son of War Front, who will also take blinkers off in this, was Grade 1 placed as juvenile and ran fifth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1) as a maiden. He won the Grade 2 Risen Star at three, and since the Preakness has been third in the Pennsylvania Derby (G1) and fifth in the Jim Dandy (G2). The Mark Casse trainee will be partnered again by Tyler Gaffalione.
Admission Office has run second on this course twice, but seeks his first win in this. The son of Point of Entry is trained by Brian Lynch, and has earned over $370,000 in 12 starts. He has been top three 10 times, but although he is multiple graded stakes placed, he still seeks his first stakes win.
Halladay is coming off a sharp allowance win here April 4 over a mile. The Todd Pletcher trainee by War Front will be ridden by Luis Saez, who was aboard for that three-length win. A stakes winner here in December, Halladay has only missed the top three spots once in his career.
Hawkish was a stakes winner at Monmouth Park a year ago, then was off from May until October 5. The gelded son of Artie Schiller hasn’t run since, but returns after a strong series of works including a May 2 bullet at Palm Meadows. Jimmy Toner trains the Grade 2 winner, who broke his maiden on this course two years ago.
Just Whistle has been entered for main track only. Cullum Road, Social Paranoia, Highland Sky, Sand Dancer, Aquaphobia, and Regally Irish complete the field. Watch and wager on every race from Gulfstream Park live with TVG.
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