French Wine to make 4-year-old debut in Kentucky Sire Stakes

After spending much of his sophomore season in the shadows of Tactical Approach, French Wine is poised to make headlines of his own in 2024, beginning in the first round of the Kentucky Sire Stakes series for 4-year-olds, set to take place Monday (April 22) at Oak Grove.

The son of Bar Hopping-Creamy Mimi won four times and banked $628,536 in his sophomore campaign, which saw him win the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes championship before finishing third to Tactical Approach in the Kentucky Sire Stakes Championship Series Final, second in the Kentucky Futurity, and third in the Breeders Crown. He has been installed the 6-5 morning line favorite in the second of two Kentucky Sire Stakes events for 4-year-old male trotters, carded as the 10th race on Monday’s 12-race program.

“He’s trained down nicely for his 4-year-old year,” said Julie Miller, who conditions the eight-time winner for Andy Miller Stable, Daniel and Jean-Christophe Plouffe, and One Legend Stable. “He is a gorgeous animal and such a professional; we’re thankful to have him.”

French Wine will square off against 2023 Kentucky Sire Stakes Championship Series final winner Ari Ferrari J, who is listed at 8-5 for trainer Tony Alagna and driver Andy McCarthy, as well as six others.

Monday’s card features a combined $300,000 worth of Kentucky Sire Stakes races for 4-year-olds, and has attracted top drivers including Andy and Todd McCarthy, Andy Miller, David Miller and Ronnie Wrenn Jr.; as well as horses from the stables of nationally-known trainers Tony Alagna, Ron Burke, Noel Daley, Per Engblom, Erv Miller and Nancy Takter.

The current Kentucky Sire Stakes series for 4-year-olds features preliminary legs on April 22 and May 6, with the top eight point earners in each division eligible to contest $100,000 finals on May 13. In total, Oak Grove presents $2 million of stakes restricted to Kentucky-eligible 4-year-olds at its current meet.

Oak Grove hosts live harness racing on Monday and Tuesday afternoons; first post is 3 p.m. CDT (4 p.m. EDT). Daily free past performance pages are available at the track’s website (https://www.oakgrovegaming.com/racing/handicapping-resources/).