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Sunday, October 21, 2007

Juvenile

- As with the Juvie Fillies, I'm going to stand against the one turn prep winner from Belmont making its two-turn debut, in this case War Pass. Zito has been training the Champagne winner up at Saratoga, where he worked a half in 48 over the training track last week.

I'm still pretty hepped up on Tale of Ekati, for reasons previously stated here and here. He was officially credited with a closing eighth of 11.80 in winning the Futurity. In particular, keep in mind that he was left at the gate, had missed "significant" training time with bucked shins since his prior race, and just forget about the chart comment of a "driving" finish. He was practically being eased. Great pedigree too, which I wrote about here prior to his debut. He's already training at Monmouth having worked a mile there in 1:43 last week. He will, however, be making his two-turn debut, which hopefully will be reflected in his odds.

Undefeated Wicked Style makes his real dirt debut after overcoming the 12 post to wire the Breeders Futurity. That doesn't necessarily mean however that he's destined to get hooked with the speedy War Pass; his prior two wins were accomplished with stalking trips. Robbie Albarado said: "If I had a better post, I could have settled him behind horses." [ESPN.com] Again, post positions will be key, but there ain't tons of speed in this race, and this son of Juvenile winner Macho Uno could get a nice trip behind the presumptive favorite. He finished very strongly - final 2 1/2 furlongs in 30.56 - that's a rate of 24.45 for a quarter, which followed splits of 25.47 and 25.01. So he accelerated nicely to the finish.

Three runners come out of the Norfolk at Santa Anita. None of these have raced on anything but synthetics, so there's that looming question. But I'm going to give them a conditioning edge and hope for the best (for the horses I like, anyway). Even though Dixie Chatter (Dixie Union) won that race (and he worked a bullet, of 54, 59.20 at Santa Anita last week), I came away impressed with the second and third finishers. Salute the Sarge (Forest Wildcat) has three wins and two tough luck seconds in his five starts. This half-brother to Chelokee was three wide on the first turn, and swung wide turning for home too, conceding much ground to the winner, who rode the rail turning for home. His trainer Eric Guillot said: "He’s bred for a dirt track, and he’s a big, heavy horse, and everybody says big, heavy horses don’t like synthetic tracks." [Bloodhorse]

Shore Do was dead last on the backstretch, launched a wide rally around the turn, had to alter course late, and finished determinedly to get up for the show spot. He previously won at a mile on the grass. He looks like a live dark horse for trainer Chuck Peery, who already has him out at Monmouth, where he breezed five furlongs in 1:02 flat over the fast main track, galloping out six furlongs in 1:15. He's by the Broad Brush stallion Include, out of a Dynaformer mare, so there could be much in the way of stamina here.

Kodiak Kowboy could be overlooked as well. He was as professional as can be in winning the Bashford Manor and the Saratoga Special; and not much wrong with his second to Tale of Ekati in the Futurity, in which he conceded ground on the turn to the winner. He'll be trying two turns for the first time. By Posse, he's out of a mare by Coronado's Quest who's a half to the multiple graded winner West By West; and his second dam is a half to the Brooklyn Handicap winner Little Missouri.

Don't know what was wrong with Majestic Warrior in the Champagne, but he's another one who if he wins here, I'll lose.

3 Comments:

Valerie said...

Just announced: Majestic Warrior is out with a left front hoof injury.

ljk said...

Tale of Ekati worked Monday. Tagg: "He went way, way, way too fast," Tagg said at his Belmont Park barn. "That wasn't in the plans. That wasn't what he was supposed to do."

alan said...

I saw the work on TVG, and he seemed to be going rather easily! More about this in my BC post in a little while...