Mandaloun begins the year with thrilling win in Louisiana S. (G3)
January 22, 2022
Into Mischief’s Grade 1 winner Mandaloun started off what is expected to be a big year with a three-quarter length victory in the $150,000 Louisiana S. (G3) Saturday at the Fair Grounds.
Mandaloun’s win came just minutes after Into Mischief got his first stakes winner of the day with Barraza taking the Clocker’s Corner S. at Santa Anita Park.
Facing a field of five foes, Mandaloun, in post 1, settled into a comfortable spot in third just behind pacesetter Midnight Bourbon. After a half-mile in :48.25, Mandaloun made his move into second and began to close the two-length gap. Florent Geroux moved Mandaloun to the outside and the pair entered the stretch side-by-side. Mandaloun wrested the lead away with less than a furlong to go, then edged away late, finishing the 1 1/16-miles in 1:42.52 on a fast track.
“Hopefully (Mandaloun) took a big step forward today off the layoff to run down a very good horse who was on the lead and we can build off this,” said winning trainer Brad Cox. “We’re going to need to if we want to have the year we’re expecting to have. I do think it’s definitely in the cards that he can build off this and be a better horse this year.”
Mandaloun could make his next start overseas in the $20 million Saudi Cup (G1) in late February in Saudi Arabia.
“It’s very possible,” Cox said about the possibility. “I always thought he’d like one turn if he ever shorten him up to one turn. The Saudi Cup is a (one-turn) mile-and-an-eighth and it’s something I definitely think he can handle.”
Mandaloun, owned by his breeder Juddmonte Farms, was last seen winning the Haskell Inv. (G1). He now has three graded stakes wins and has earned $1,741,252.
Mandaloun is the second of five foals from the Empire Maker mare Brooch and her lone stakes winner. He also has 3-year-old and 2-year-old full brothers, neither who have started.