The last time a 3-year-old ran in the Peter Pan Stakes -- which will be run for the 52nd time at Belmont Park today -- and went on to win the Belmont Stakes was Lemon Drop Kid, who thwarted Charismatic's bid for the Triple Crown with an upset in 1999.
A field of eight is scheduled to go in the $200,000 Peter Pan, a Grade II at 1 1/8 miles, and some of them could return to take on Afleet Alex, Giacomo and others in the final jewel of the Triple Crown on June 11.
In terms of earnings, the most accomplished member of the field is Robador, a California-bred son of Robannier who broke his maiden in the $250,000 Snow Chief Stakes as a 23-1 longshot on April 24 at Hollywood Park, but he is not viewed as a legitimate contender in the Peter Pan.
A colt with California ties who will receive far more attention is Chekhov. A son of Pulpit owned by Derrick Smith and Michael Tabor, Chekhov, a $3.3 million 2-year-old purchase, broke his maiden by 8 1/4 lengths in his Belmont Park debut on May 8 after three losses at Keeneland and Santa Anita. Gary Stevens will ride for trainer Patrick Biancone.
The field is completed by Sir Greeley, who has won two of his last three for trainer Jimmy Jerkens; Mr Sword, Golden Man, who won by three lengths at Gulfstream Park on April 2 in his first start after being claimed for $60,000 by trainer Richard Dutrow Jr.; Gorbash, Reverberate, who is two of two at Belmont, and Oratory.
Race of the day: Ebony Breeze, who upset Lady Tak in an allowance race in her return to Kentucky on May 5, will try for her ninth lifetime victory in today's $100,000 Winning Colors at Churchill Downs. Mike Smith will ride the 5-year-old Belong To Me mare for George Steinbrenner's Kinsman Stable and trainer Bill Mott.
One for the road: Lemon Drop King overcame some trouble to break his maiden at Calder on Oct. 30 and has trained well for his return in today's ninth at Belmont Park. Javier Castellano will ride the 3-year-old son of Lemon Drop Kid for Our Jeb Stable and trainer Christophe Clement in the $46,000 allowance at 1 1/16 miles on turf.
Exotically speaking: A pick three using Super Syd in the third, Crowded Room, Miss Thirtyfour D and Newyearresolution in the fourth and Callmeluckylucy, Love Always and Dreamabull in the fifth.
Winners (through Thursday): Previous day/meet total: 2/63. Money: Previous day/meet total: $8.40/$324.60. Total money bet: $432.