Paco Lopez to Ride J J’S Lucky Train in the G1 Haskell
Exactly one year to the day after being claimed for $40,000, J J’s Lucky Train will be sent postward in the July 31 Resorts Haskell Invitational (gr. I) at Monmouth Park.
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Trained by Bill Anderson, the son of Silver Train was claimed for Fresh Start Stable out of his debut.
“Obviously he’s turned out to be a good buy,” Anderson said. “Right after we got him, I worked him on the turf and that almost turned out to be disastrous. The dogs were out pretty far and he jumped one of them and almost tossed his rider. Luckily nothing serious happened.”
J J’s Lucky Train went on to win at Monmouth, Philly Park, Laurel and then took the Bay Shore Stakes (gr. III) at Aqueduct on April 9. Since the Bay Shore score, he finished third in the Cliff’s Edge Derby Trial (gr. III) at Churchill Downs and most recently second in the Woody Stephens (gr. II) at Belmont on June 11.
“He’s a very nice horse,” Anderson said. “His mother was a stakes winner on turf and I always thought he’d be a nice turf horse, but after that one work on turf I was reluctant.”
In his most recent work July 13, Anderson shipped J J from his Parx headquarters in Bensalem, Pa., to Monmouth for a spin around the grass course. He went the five furlongs in 1:03 4/5 with the dogs up.
“It was a real good work for him,” Anderson said. “We’ll probably ship him over here on Monday and he’ll likely work again on the turf Wednesday. He’ll train up to the race at Monmouth.”
From 10 lifetime starts, J J’s Lucky Train has a record of 5-3-1 and earnings of $329,214. He will have Paco Lopez, leading rider last year at Monmouth, aboard for the Haskell.