Saturday’s eighth race at Oaklawn is the 57th running of the Razorback Handicap (GII), the last local prep for the Oaklawn Handicap (GI) on April 16. Ralph Evans’ Upstart, a highly regarded runner on the Triple Crown trail last year, makes his 2016 debut against nine other older handicap runners. He is the 120-pound highweight for the 1 1/16-mile event and ships in from Palm Meadows in Florida for trainer Rick Violette.
The New York-bred son of Flatter hasn’t won a race in more than a year since taking last year’s Holy Bull Stakes (GIII) at Gulfstream Park, but looks solidly placed in this spot.
The local favorite for the Razorback is Michael Langford’s Carve, who is trained by Hall of Fame nominee Steve Asmussen. Carve has won four of his 10 career starts at Oaklawn Park and is making his second start of the year after a decent third in the Essex Handicap last out.
Last year’s Southwest Stakes winner Far Right enters off a pair of decent starts in allowance company this year, including a win in an optional claiming race last out.
Post time for the Razorback Handicap will be 5:57 EDT.