From today’s Santa Anita Park notes:
Multiple Grade I winner Dullahan worked five furlongs on Santa Anita’s dirt track Saturday morning under Tammy Fox in a minute flat, after which trainer Dale Romans said a decision on whether the Pacific Classic winner would run in the $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic or the $3 million Turf at Santa Anita next Saturday would likely not be rendered before Monday’s deadline.
“I thought he went really good,” Romans said shortly after the 9 a.m. drill. “I haven’t talked to her (Fox) yet, but he went fast and he looked good doing it.”
Dullahan is pre-entered for the Classic at 1 ¼ miles on dirt and the Turf at 1 ½ miles.
“We’ll talk to her and Jerry (Crawford, owner, who races as Donegal Racing). It’ll be Jerry’s decision. We’ll have a meeting with her and see what she says. There’s no rush, but by entry time on Monday, we’ll have it settled by then.”
Dullahan’s three career wins have all come on synthetic surfaces. The 3-year-old son of Even the Score is winless in four turf starts and winless in six races on traditional dirt.
Asked his thoughts about that, Romans was resigned to his fate. “Well,” he said, “they wouldn’t change this to Poly for me, so there’s nothing I can do about it. We’ll see what happens.”
Shackleford, second in last year’s Dirt Mile, went five furlongs with Fox up in a minute flat as the 2011 Preakness winner prepares for another go in the Dirt Mile. Also for Romans, Little Mike (Turf or Mile) worked five furlongs on Santa Anita’s grass course in 1:01.80, while Moonwalk (Juvenile Fillies Turf) went the same distance in 1:01.60.
Also, unbeaten Juvenile Fillies favorite Executiveprivilege worked six furlongs for Bob Baffert in 1:14.20 in company with stablemate Sir Allison, who was clocked in 1:14.80. Martin Garcia was aboard Executiveprivilege, who will be ridden by Rafael Bejarano in the Juvenile Fillies.
Elsewhere: Super Ninety Nine (Juvenile Sprint) worked five furlongs for Baffert in 59.40 with stablemate Candrea, who was timed in 1:00.60; Marathon contender Commander, winner of his last six starts, worked five furlongs for trainer Troy Taylor in 1:00.40; Smiling Tiger (Sprint) went four furlongs from the gate in a bullet 46.80 for Jeff Bonde; Love and Pride (Ladies’ Classic) and Tara from the Cape (Juvenile Fillies Turf) worked in company on the main track for Todd Pletcher, each going in 48 seconds flat;
Also, Capo Bastone (Juvenile), six furlongs in 1:11.60; Lady of Shamrock (Filly & Mare Turf), seven furlongs in 1:28.20; Under Review (Juvenile Turf), six furlongs on grass in 1:14.60 and Switch (F&M Sprint), six furlongs in a bullet 1:11.20, each worked for John Sadler; Second City (Sprint and Dirt Mile), six furlongs in 1:14 for Ben Cecil; and John Scott (Dirt Mile), five furlongs in 1:00.40 for Carla Gaines.
“Her work was good,” Sadler said of Switch’s second straight bullet move. “She’s ready to go. She likes this track and she likes this distance (six furlongs).”
Other turf workers Saturday included Gervinho (Juvenile Turf, four furlongs in 48.40 for Carla Gaines); In Lingerie (F&M Turf, four furlongs in a bullet 46.60 for Todd Pletcher); Turbo Compressor (Turf, four furlongs in 47.40, also for Pletcher); Reneesgotzip (F&M Sprint, five furlongs in 59.40 for Peter Miller); Dry Summer (Juvenile Turf, six furlongs in 1:13.80 for Jeff Mullins); Stormy Lucy (F&M Turf, six furlongs in 1:14.60 for Frank Lucarelli); and Bourbon Bay (Turf, six furlongs in 1:13.40 for Neil Drysdale).
Renee’s Queen was 38-1 when she won Del Mar’s Juvenile Fillies Turf on Sept. 3 and will be of like odds if she runs in the Juvenile Fillies Turf, but that doesn’t dissuade Eric Guillot.
“I’ve won eight graded stakes with horses that were 25-1 or higher,” the trainer said.
Among Breeders’ Cup candidates scheduled to work at Santa Anita Sunday are Classic favorite Game On Dude and Turf Sprint contender California Flag, winner of that event in 2009.
ROMANS, SHACKLEFORD TURN BARN 76 INTO EQUINE THEATRE
Thanks in large part to the power of Twitter, Facebook and the welcoming hospitality of trainer Dale Romans and crew, a crowd of approximately 80 horse lovers descended upon Santa Anita’s Barn 76 at 11 a.m. Saturday, as Romans presented stable stars Shackleford (Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile), Little Mike (Breeders’ Cup Turf ), and Dullahan (Turf or Classic) to the enthusiastic gathering, most of whom were armed with cameras.
“This is all thanks to Laura Hernan,” said the self-effacing Romans. “She handles our social media and she said we’ve been getting all kinds of requests to meet ‘Shack,’ and so I decided today would be the best day to try and accommodate as many people as possible.
“Both ‘Shack’ and Dullahan worked five eighths this morning and they both went in a minute, which is the third best time of the morning.”
Along with a large gathering of fans, HRTV was on hand to document the “Meet and Greet,” as Romans first addressed questions regarding how his horses trained earlier and then brought each horse out individually to pose for pictures.
Before Romans brought out his first horse, Little Mike, a winner of this year’s Arlington Million, one of the attendees told Romans, “Somebody (in media) said that Shackleford worked too fast and that he might be over the top.”
To which Romans quipped, “Tell him to get a trainer’s license . . . He trains fast and he runs fast.”
Next out was recent Pacific Classic winner Dullahan, of whom Romans said, “This is the only horse in the history of racing who has three wins and all three have been in Grade I races.”
When asked if Dullahan would be entered in the Breeders’ Cup Classic or the 1 ½-mile Turf, Romans said, “I’ll talk to Tammy (Fox, who is Roman’s chief exercise rider, assistant and life partner) tonight and we’ll make a decision. If was up to me, I’d run him in the Classic, but we’ll discuss it.”
The morning’s main event came when Romans paged Shackleford, a winner of last year’s Preakness and this year’s Grade I Metropolitan Mile Handicap and Grade II Churchill Downs Stakes.
When the 4-year-old son of Forestry emerged from his shedrow, there was no doubt that he is the Romans’ stable star. The striking chestnut posed calmly with his ears pricked and turned his head from time to time to take in the shutter-clicking throng.
“Shackleford, he knows he’s the king,” said Romans. “He’s an absolutely special horse. When he won the Preakness, they always have a big party at the barn afterwards and there must’ve been a thousand people come by to pet him.”
After approximately five minutes, Romans asked if anyone had a mint. Several people said they did, and at that point, Romans allowed about 25 people, mainly small children, to come forward and have their picture taken with the barn’s leading man.
“I always thought he was a super cool horse and we wanted to give him a good name,” said co-owner and breeder Mike Lauffer, who had been on-hand earlier for Shackleford’s final Breeders’ Cup breeze. “We visit North Carolina a lot and the Shackleford Banks are part of the barrier islands off the coast. They are populated by wild horses that are believed to be descendents of a Spanish shipwreck in the 1700s.”