Get ready for the weekend

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With Far Hills and the International Gold Cup on tap, Saturday promises to be the biggest American steeplechase day of the year. The NSA took entries Tuesday, providing a glimpse at the action to come.

At Far Hills, seven horses made the overnight for the $250,000 Grand Nationa (Gr. I). The richest steeplechase in North America attracted 2007 Eclipse Award winner and heavy favorite Good Night Shirt, whose last loss came in this race last year. The 7-year-old rides a four-race winning streak into the 2 5/8-mile test. His opponents Saturday include some combination of Be Certain, Best Attack, Isti Bee, Dalucci, Red Letter Day and Orison. All but Red Letter Day, Best Attack and Isti Bee are also entered in other races on the card so the final field might have to wait until Saturday.

Nobody looks as good as Good Night Shirt. He has simply been dominant this year. He looks to completely assume the mantel left empty by the retirement of five-time Grand National winner McDynamo, who retired at the end of last year. Maryland-based Jack Fisher trains the chestnut son of Concern  for Virginia resident Sonny Via. 

The field, in post position order (with trainer and jockey): Be Certain (Tom Voss, Padge Whelan), Best Attack (Bruce Miller, Jody Petty), Good Night Shirt (Jack Fisher, Willie Dowling), Isti Bee (Doug Fout, Paddy Young), Dalucci (Charlie Swan, no rider named), Red Letter Day (Janet Elliot, Danielle Hodsdon), Orison (Doug Fout, Matt McCarron).

As usual, the rest of the Far Hills card (worth $550,000 including the Grand National) looks just as intirguing.

The Peapack filly/mare stakes: Veteran Guelph and newcomer Class Shadow headline 11 entered for the $50,000 stakes. The field also includes recent maiden winner Confined and former champion Feeling So Pretty.

The Foxbrook novice: Eight entered including Monmouth Park stakes winner Seer, former flat star Dreadnaught, Saratoga winner Spy In The Sky and 4-year-old phenom Be Certain.

The Appleton open stakes at 2 1/8 miles: Eleven made the entry list including 2007 novice champion Planets Aligned, speedy veteran Preemptive Strike,  recent winner Langburg, the returning Rare Bush and Grand National entrants Orison and Dalucci.

The Gladstone 3-year-old stakes: Morven Park winner Class Bopper heads a three-ronged attack from Mede Cahaba Stable and Lilith Boucher (they're all supposed to be good). Virginia Fall winner Orebanks also joins a wide-open field that includes horses from Tom Voss (Imperial Way), Jonathan Sheppard (Hymn To Happiness) and Jack Fisher (Pleasant Top and Diva Maria).

The New Jersey Hunt Cup timber stakes: Only five made the list, but they include defending winner Irish Prince, rising star Monte Bianco and the highly regarded Erin Go Bragh.

At Great Meadow in Virginia, the fields are considerably bigger with $190,000 on the line in five jump races and two flat tests. in the feature, the International Gold Cup timber stakes, Bubble Economy, Salmo, Woodmont and Shady Valley head a list of 11 that includes Irish Prince (he'll have to make a decision). A $25,000 maiden drew 10 entrants including News Flash and Delta Park. A $30,000 optional claimer lured Duke Of Earl, Dynaway, Terpsichorean and Dynantonia. 

NOTES: Combined, steeplechasing offers $740,000 in purses Saturday . . . Jockeys will be in demand and Robbie Walsh looks for another big day at the Gold Cup (he won two including the feature last year) . . . For complete entries, get an overnght at the NSA Entries section.