Far Hills Spotlight: Foxbrook No. 2 goes through Fisher

- -

The second division of the Foxbrook doesn’t look as strong as the first, but again mixes experience – Gibralfaro’s 14 starts, Ice It’s 17 and Detroit Blues’ 14 – with relative newcomers Cite, Amschel, Swellelegent and others. Trainer Jack Fisher runs four of the nine. If you’re so inclined, this is the first leg of the Far Hills/NYRA Pick Four.

Cite: Bred by Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider, the 5-year-old had two of the easiest trips you’ll ever see over hurdles this spring – finishing second to Boss Man at the Queen’s Cup and winning over Belisarius at the Iroquois. Those were maiden races, however, and this is no maiden race. Trainer Jack Fisher wanted to run at High Hope last month, but the ground came up soft and deep so sent his horse home. Big test. Nice horse.

Gibralfaro: The second of four in the race for Fisher has run 14 times over jumps. His American career started with a win at Tryon, but he ran into Iranistan and settled for second at Nashville and was a non-threatening sixth at Belmont. Maybe he needed that, but he looked flat. He will need to improve while giving away weight.

Amschel: Irish import was made the favorite off three wins and a second in four tries at home this year. The 4-year-old makes his U.S. debut for trainer Cyril Murphy, and will need to adjust to new fences and race flow while meeting a quality group. Had no trouble with step up from 2 to 2 1/2 miles in Ireland.

Set To Music: Romped in the maiden at Fair Hill, his seventh start over jumps. Great pedigree (Dynaformer over Real Quiet mare) and steadily improving off two seconds to start 2018. Gets a massive class test.

Ice It: Hello again. He makes his third start in this race, taking advantage of the “non-winners of three races other than 3-year-old” loophole. Second in the 2016 and 2017 runnings, he should factor again for the Fisher barn especially off quality second to Boss Man (who’s in the other division) at Belmont. Co-owner Rufus Williams recently passed away at 87, and a little divine intervention never hurt. Player, as usual.

All For Us: The fourth Fisher runner looked on his way to stardom with a debut win, two seconds and three thirds in 2016. Then he missed last year with an injury. He shook off the rust with an allowance win at Shawan Downs late last month. Has the talent, but faces strong group.

Indian Hawk: Irish-bred won three in England for Nicky Henderson before joining the Leslie Young barn. Elmont effort was a bust as he was beaten 25 lengths. Blinkers go on, as does new jockey Tom Garner. Better than that performance, but will need big form reversal.

Swellegent: Six-year-old has put together a decent year with a turf win at Suffolk Downs, a handicap hurdle score at Monmouth and a solid second last time at High Hope. Only try in this company resulted in a fourth at Saratoga. That was OK, but he’ll need to be better to contend here.

Detroit Blues: Holy comeback, Batman. In his first start in almost two years, he checked in third behind Boss Man and Ice It at Belmont Park while 12-1. Won at Saratoga in 2016, so he’s plenty capable. Does he regress a little off the huge effort last time?