Age is Only a Number for Whitmore

Horse Racing Radar
Valerie Mellema
Valerie Mellema is a Staff writer for Horse Racing Radar
Friday, August 27, 2021

As Travers' weekend rolls in, Champion Sprinter WHITMORE will be looking to win the Forego (G1) once again and get back to his winning ways. 

The chestnut gelding is now 8-years-old but trainer Rob Moquette says, "Age is only a number. We prefer to look at the individual way each horse is doing and not let age be the deciding factor in how he's going to do. He's quite the handful. There's always something at Saratoga to pump him up. He's always fired up when he's here and he's feeling feisty."

What would be the best scenario for WHITMORE to win another Forego? Probably for the young bucks to go out and burn their energy early, so he can come from the back and tear it up to get to the wire.  

WHITMORE won the Forego in 2018 by 1 ½ lengths as a five-year-old in a field that included CITY OF LIGHT. CITY OF LIGHT would go on to win the Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile (G1) and the Pegasus World Cup (G1) that year. That year WHITMORE placed second in the Breeders' Cup Sprint.

Since then, WHITMORE continued to compete at the highest level and finally got his Breeders' Cup break last year, winning the Sprint by 3 ¼ lengths at 18-1 odds. WHITMORE fans across the country rejoiced. 

This year, WHITMORE has started four times, but first place has not been his friend. He finished second to C Z ROCKET twice at Oaklawn Park and hit the wire third in the Churchill Downs Stakes (G1) in May. he also finished third in the Alfred G. Vanderbilt Handicap (G1) at this meet in Saratoga. Hopefully he will be able to channel some of his Saratoga excitement this weekend in the Forego. If he is able to pull it off, he will be one of only two horses his age to win a Grade 1 on the NYRA circuit. 

"The main difference I would like to see is us finishing first," Moquette said, with a laugh. "I'd like to see an honest pace, some good-horse fractions and hopefully they back up in our favor." 

Should WHITMORE pull it off this weekend, he will likely be pointed to the G2 Phoenix at keeneland, a race he won in 2017, followed by an attempt to retain his crown in the G1 Breeders' Cup Sprint on November 6th at Del Mar.

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