2021 Fountain of Youth Stakes Cheat Sheet

Racing
Greatest Honour, shown winning the Holy Bull Stakes Jan. 30, headlines the Fountain of Youth Stakes Saturday at Gulfstream Park on the Road to the Kentucky Derby. (Lauren King/Coglianese Photo)

The $300,000 Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth Stakes Feb. 27 at Gulfstream Park is part of the Road to the Kentucky Derby Championship Series and therefore a key prep to the 2021 Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve as well as the major local steppingstone to the Florida Derby on March 27.

The 1 1/16-mile, Grade 2 race rewards 50 points toward qualifying for the Kentucky Derby to the winner, plus 20 points to the runner-up, 10 points for third, and five points for fourth.

Just in the last 10 years, the Fountain of Youth has served as a launching pad for 2012 Belmont Stakes winner Union Rags, 2013 Kentucky Derby winner Orb, 2018 Kentucky Derby runner-up Good Magic, and 2019 Derby runner-up Code of Honor. Throughout its history, this race has been won by future stars such as Tim Tam (1958), Kauai King (1966), In Reality (1967), Spectacular Bid (1979), Bet Twice (1987), Forty Niner (1988), and Thunder Gulch (1995). Read John Piassek’s look back at memorable Fountain of Youth winners here.

This year the Fountain of Youth drew 10 entrants. The race will be televised on TVG with a scheduled post time of 6:10 p.m. ET. Read on for more information on each of the contenders.


Lauren KIng/Coglianese Photo

1. Drain the Clock (5-1 morning-line odds)

Jockey: Edgard Zayas

Trainer: Saffie Joseph Jr.

Owners: Slam Dunk Racing, Madaket Stables, Wonder Stables, and Michael Nentwig

Career record: 5 starts – 4 wins – 0 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $152,550

Earnings per start: $30,510

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 95

Kentucky Derby Points: 0

Pedigree: Maclean's Music – Manki, by Arch

Color: Chestnut

Running style: Press the pace

Notable achievements and interesting facts: This talented colt has won all four of the races he has finished with his only defeat coming when his rider broke one of his irons and was unseated in a stakes race last November. Drain the Clock won the Limehouse Stakes by 7 ½ lengths Jan. 2 at Gulfstream Park and enters the Fountain of Youth off a 6 ¼-length runaway in the Grade 3 Claiborne Farm Swale Stakes Jan. 30. This will be his first race longer than seven-eighths of a mile and therefore his first try racing around two turns, but he has elite cruising speed and a knack for winning. I’d expect he’ll be in the mix for the lead entering the stretch and from there we’ll find out if he’s a pure sprinter or a Kentucky Derby contender. My hunch is the latter and he hangs around for at least a top-three finish.


Lauren KIng/Coglianese Photo

2. Prime Factor (5-1)

Jockey: Irad Ortiz Jr.

Trainer: Todd Pletcher

Owners: WinStar Farm and CHC INC.

Career record: 2 starts – 1 win – 0 seconds – 1 third

Career earnings: $43,200

Earnings per start: $21,600

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 88

Kentucky Derby Points: 2

Pedigree: Quality Road – Haylie Brae, by Bernardini

Color: Bay

Running style: Press the pace

Notable achievements and interesting facts: Prime Factor was tested against stakes competition in the Grade 3 Holy Bull Stakes Jan. 30 after posting an 8 ¾-length debut win sprinting in December. He challenged for the lead in the stretch of the Holy Bull but was no match for winner Greatest Honour and faded to finish third, beaten by 9 ½ lengths as the 11-10 favorite. While his stakes debut was a bit of a disappointment, Prime Factor is eligible to improve considering he was both stepping up in class and stretching out from three-quarters of a mile to 1 1/16 miles. He will need to show more stamina late and improve his speed figures to be a win threat, but Prime Factor has a realistic shot at another top three finish with a little more foundation and considering there’s not a ton of speed in the race. Trainer Todd Pletcher has won the race a record-tying three times with Scat Daddy (2007), Eskendereya (2010), and Itsaknockout (2015). Irad Ortiz Jr. won the Fountain of Youth in 2018 on Promises Fulfilled.


3. Sososubtle (20-1)

Jockey: Paco Lopez

Trainer: Armando De La Cerda

Owners: Teresa Palmer and David J. Palmer

Career record: 2 starts – 1 win – 0 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $24,400

Earnings per start: $12,200

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 93

Kentucky Derby Points: 0

Pedigree: Speightster – Subtle Livie, by Mr. Livingston

Color: Chestnut

Running style: Stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: After an unplaced finish on the grass in his career debut, Sososubtle looked like a different animal when he was switched to the main track for a one-mile race at Gulfstream Jan. 20. He stalked the pace early and pulled away to win by 4 ¼ lengths in his first try on dirt, improving his Equibase Speed Figure from a 47 to a 93. While that sharp improvement is promising, he is going from a maiden race restricted to Florida-breds to a salty graded stakes on the Kentucky Derby trail. That’s a major test for this lightly raced 3-year-old gelding from the family of Breeders’ Cup Sprint winner Very Subtle.


Eclipse Sportswire

4. Fire At Will (7-2)

Jockey: Kendrick Carmouche

Trainer: Mike Maker

Owner: Three Diamonds Farm

Career record: 4 starts – 3 wins – 0 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $657,932

Earnings per start: $164,483

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 105

Kentucky Derby Points: 0

Pedigree: Declaration of War – Flirt, by Kitten's Joy

Color: Dark bay or brown

Running style: Stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: The 2020 Breeders’ Cup Turf Presented by Coolmore America winner returns to the main track Saturday for his 3-year-old debut. The Declaration of War colt won his only previous race on dirt last September when he won the With Anticipation Stakes by a half-length at Saratoga, where the race was washed off the turf onto a sloppy main track. Talent should not be an issue, but whether he can compete at the level he has on turf on a fast main track remains a question as his 80 Equibase Speed Figure for the With Anticipation is 25 points off his career-top on the turf. While his pedigree sure seems heavily slanted toward the grass, truly elite racehorses often can excel on multiple surfaces. Consider him a wild card with significant upside who could challenge for the win or finish up the track.


5. Jirafales (20-1)

Jockey: Javier Castellano

Trainer: Gustavo Delgado

Owners: OGMA Investments and Off The Hook LLC

Career record: 2 starts – 1 win – 0 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $27,360

Earnings per start: $13,680

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 76

Kentucky Derby Points: 0

Pedigree: Social Inclusion – Gran Pashita, by Horse Chestnut

Color: Bay

Running style: Closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: Jirafales won his career debut Nov. 19 at Gulfstream Park West by 4 ¾ lengths in a sprint for Florida-breds, but he subsequently appeared outclassed in the Grade 3 Holy Bull Stakes. Stretching out to 1 1/16 miles and stepping up in competition, the deep closer passed a few opponents late to move up from ninth to fifth, but he finished 17 lengths behind winner Greatest Honour. With the top four finishers from the Holy Bull all returning and 6 ¾ lengths to make up on fourth-place finisher Papetu, it’s easy to see why Jirafales is 20-1 on the morning-line. Best-case scenario might be a late rally to fill out the trifecta or superfecta. Jockey Javier Castellano won this race in 2017 aboard Gunnevera.


Coady Photography

6. King's Ovation (15-1)

Jockey: Corey Lanerie

Trainer: Dale Romans

Owners: West Point Thoroughbreds and Peacock Stable (Tom Hammond)

Career record: 4 starts – 1 win – 1 second – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $70,400

Earnings per start: $17,600

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 83

Kentucky Derby Points: 0

Pedigree: Not This Time – Karen's Silk, by High Cotton

Color: Chestnut

Running style: Stalker/closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: Trainer Dale Romans will try stretching out King’s Ovation for the Fountain of Youth after he made his first four starts in sprints. He enters this race off a second, beaten by 6 ¾ lengths by fellow entrant Drain the Clock, in the Grade 3 Claiborne Farm Swale Stakes Jan. 30. While he outran his 36.10-1 odds in the seven-furlong Swale, King’s Ovation most likely would need to improve his speed figure by about 15 to 20 points to compete for a win against this group. Perhaps the added distance will unlock something in this colt from the first crop of Not This Time out of stakes-winning sprinter Karen’s Silk. Romans won the Fountain of Youth in 2018 with Promises Fulfilled.


Lauren KIng/Coglianese Photo

7. Tarantino (8-1)

Jockey: Tyler Gaffalione

Trainer: Rodolphe Brisset

Owners: SF Racing, Starlight Racing, Madaket Stables, Stonestreet Stables, Golconda Stable, Siena Farm, and Robert E. Masterson

Career record: 4 starts – 2 wins – 2 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $115,400

Earnings per start: $28,850

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 94

Kentucky Derby Points: 4

Pedigree: Pioneerof the Nile – Without Delay, by Seeking the Gold

Color: Bay

Running style: Press the pace

Notable achievements and interesting facts: After making his first three starts on the grass, Tarantino switched over to the main track and finished second to Greatest Honour in the Grade 3 Holy Bull Stakes Jan. 30 at Gulfstream. He earned a new career-best 94 Equibase Speed Figure for the runner-up finish and picked up his first points on the Road to the Kentucky Derby leaderboard. Named after famous American film director and producer Quentin Tarantino, the Pioneerof the Nile colt was close up to a fast pace in the Holy Bull and still wound up 2 ¾ lengths clear of the other seven runners in what was a significantly better race than it looks on paper. He will need to take another step forward to turn the tables on Greatest Honour, but having a quality start on dirt could help facilitate that improvement and there is not a ton of speed in Saturday’s race. Co-owner Starlight Racing won this race in 2015 with Itsaknockout.


Eclipse Sportswire

8. Greatest Honour (9-5)

Jockey: Jose Ortiz

Trainer: Shug McGaughey

Owner: Courtlandt Farm

Career record: 5 starts – 2 wins – 1 second – 2 thirds

Career earnings: $175,240

Earnings per start: $35,048

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 106

Kentucky Derby Points: 10

Pedigree: Tapit – Tiffany's Honour, by Street Cry

Color: Bay

Running style: Closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: Hall of Fame trainer Shug McGaughey has taken a patient approach with this well-bred colt and was rewarded with a dominant 5 ¾-length romp Jan. 30 in the Grade 3 Holy Bull Stakes at Gulfstream Park. This Tapit colt out of a half-sister to Belmont Stakes winners Rags to Riches and Jazil flashed a terrific turn of foot in a sustained closing rally in the Holy Bull and looks like he should improve with distance. Expect Greatest Honour to be a heavy favorite to give McGaughey his third win (Orb, 2013; Code of Honor, 2019) in the Fountain of Youth. He’s the fastest horse in the race on paper and the pick to win. It would be a shocker if Greatest Honour did not finish in at least the top three.


9. Tiz Tact Toe (30-1)

Jockey: Rajiv Maragh

Trainer: Robert B. Hess Jr.

Owners: David A. Bernsen LLC and Susanna Wilson

Career record: 3 starts – 0 wins – 0 seconds – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $4,820

Earnings per start: $1,607

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 78

Kentucky Derby Points: 0

Pedigree: Tourist – Lafirma, by Giant's Causeway

Color: Bay

Running style: Closer

Notable achievements and interesting facts: On paper, Tiz Tact Toe looks like an outsider in the Fountain of Youth as he’s unplaced in three lifetime starts. Claimed out of his most recent start for $50,000 by Robert Hess Jr., he moves from grass to try his luck for the first time on the main track, so perhaps the new conditioner saw something that made him believe this Tourist gelding was better suited to dirt racing. He most recently rallied from seventh to finish fourth, beaten by only three-quarters of a length, in his best start to date in the one-mile turf race that Hess plucked him out of Jan. 8. There is some back class in Tiz Tact Toe’s pedigree, but I’d want at least his 30-1 odds on the morning line before considering for my exotic wagers a maiden trying dirt for the first time in a Grade 2 race.


Lauren KIng/Coglianese Photo

10. Papetu (15-1)

Jockey: Junior Alvarado

Trainer: Antonio Sano

Owner: Magic Stables

Career record: 6 starts – 2 wins – 1 second – 0 thirds

Career earnings: $87,925

Earnings per start: $14,654

Top Equibase Speed Figure: 89

Kentucky Derby Points: 1

Pedigree: Dialed in – Lady Malkin, by Sharp Humor

Color: Chestnut

Running style: Stalker

Notable achievements and interesting facts: After opening the season with a runner-up finish in the Mucho Macho Man Stakes at one mile at Gulfstream Park to earn a career-top 89 Equibase Speed Figure, Papetu faded in the Grade 3 Holy Bull Stakes and finished fourth, 10 ¼ length behind winner Greatest Honour. Unplaced in three career starts against graded stakes competition, Papetu would need to improve substantially to pose a serious threat in the stretch of the Fountain of Youth. He has shown enough to warrant some consideration as a trifecta filler if he’s a huge price, but right now he appears to be a cut below the best 3-year-olds and there appear to be some legitimate distance limitations. Trainer Antonio Sano won the Fountain of Youth in 2017 with Gunnevera; jockey Junior Alvarado won the Fountain of Youth in 2016 with Mohaymen.

2021 Fasig-Tipton Fountain of Youth S.
February 27th, 2021

Winning Time: 1:44.02
  • Purse: $300,000
  • Distance: 1 1/16 Miles
  • Age: 3 yo
  • Surface: Dirt
  • Winning Time: 1:44.02
Results
Win
Place
Show
1st
8 Greatest Honour
$4.00
$2.60
$2.20
3rd
10 Papetu
$5.60
5th
5 Jirafales
6th
6 King's Ovation
7th
2 Prime Factor
8th
4 Fire At Will
9th
9 Tiz Tact Toe
10th
3 Sososubtle
Payoff
Pick 3
1-3-8
1-3-8
$348
Pick 4
2/3-1-3/8/11-8
2/3-1-3/8/11-8
$782
Pick 5
4-2/3-1-3/8/11-8
4-2/3-1-3/8/11-8
$4,695
Pick 5
4-2/3-1-3/8/11-8
4-2/3-1-3/8/11-8
$24
Pick 6 Jackpot
5-4-2/3-1-3/8/11-8
5-4-2/3-1-3/8/11-8
$5,357
Daily Double
3-8
3-8
$12
Exacta
8-1
8-1
$6
Quinella
1-8
1-8
$8
Superfecta
8-1-10-7
8-1-10-7
$16
Super High Five
8-1-10-7-5
8-1-10-7-5
$1,837
Trifecta
8-1-10
8-1-10
$16
Race Replay
Play
Payoff
Pick 3
1-3-8
1-3-8
$348
Pick 4
2/3-1-3/8/11-8
2/3-1-3/8/11-8
$782
Pick 5
4-2/3-1-3/8/11-8
4-2/3-1-3/8/11-8
$4,695
Pick 5
4-2/3-1-3/8/11-8
4-2/3-1-3/8/11-8
$24
Pick 6 Jackpot
5-4-2/3-1-3/8/11-8
5-4-2/3-1-3/8/11-8
$5,357
Daily Double
3-8
3-8
$12
Exacta
8-1
8-1
$6
Quinella
1-8
1-8
$8
Superfecta
8-1-10-7
8-1-10-7
$16
Super High Five
8-1-10-7-5
8-1-10-7-5
$1,837
Trifecta
8-1-10
8-1-10
$16

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