Colonel Liam Headlines Muniz

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Colonel LiamRyan Thompson

GI Pegasus World Cup Turf S. winner Colonel Liam (Liam's Map) looms the one to beat in Saturday's GII Mervin Muniz Memorial S. at the Fair Grounds. Breaking his maiden on dirt via DQ in his career bow at Gulfstream last April, the $1.2-million OBS April topper was third next out in the slop there before switching to the grass, winning a Saratoga allowance in July. Fourth in the Saratoga Derby Invitational S. in August, the gray captured the Tropical Park Derby back in Hallandale Dec. 26 and followed suit with a late-rallying defeat of stablemate Largent (Into Mischief) in the Pegasus Turf last out Jan. 23.

The third-place finisher from that event Cross Border (English Channel) also returns here. Dominant winner of Saratoga's Lubash S. last summer, the dark bay was second in both the GII Bowling Green S. and GI Sword Dancer S. at the Spa in August. Off the board in Belmont's GI Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational S. in October, he was third in the Mohawk S. there three weeks later and missed by a head to Logical Myth (Data Link) in the Dilberto Memorial S. Dec. 19.

Four of the top five finishers from the Feb. 13 GIII Fair Grounds S. return here, topped by winner Captivating Moon (Malibu Moon). Prior to that 43-1 upset, he had not seen the winner's circle since December of 2019. Logical Myth was second in the Fair Grounds with Peace Achieved (Declaration of War) in third and last year's Muniz winner Factor This (The Factor) in fifth.

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