Dream Maker, the talented 3-year-old colt who returned from a four-month layoff Saturday at Fair Grounds to win a first-level, dirt-route allowance by 8 1/2 lengths, probably is headed to the Tampa Bay Derby.
“He looked wonderful this morning,” trainer Mark Casse said Sunday afternoon. “I had a good conversation with [owner John] Oxley this morning and right now the plan is to go to the Tampa Bay Derby. That’s just because of the timing. It’s four weeks and that’d give us time to go on to the Blue Grass.”
The Tampa Bay Derby is March 9, the Blue Grass scheduled for April 6.
Dream Maker was timed in 1:44.10 for 1 1/16-miles on a fast track, a raw time yielding an 89 Beyer Speed Figure that, if anything, seems conservative.
Dream Maker is by Tapit, whose offspring can be difficult to manage mentally and psychologically, but Dream Maker “has a wonderful temperament,” Casse said.
An Oxley homebred, Dream Maker is out of the mare To Dream About, who is by Monarchos, Oxley’s Kentucky Derby winner. Dream Maker’s second dam is Beautiful Pleasure, a multiple Grade 1-winning monster Oxley campaigned.
The Casse barn also has War of Will stabled here. He's the likely favorite Saturday in the Risen Star Stakes.
Casse said Dream Maker would be stabled at Fair Grounds for a couple more weeks before moving to the Casse Training Center in Ocala, Florida and shipping from there to race at Tampa Bay.