Chicago Barn to Wire


Arlington Park Barn Notes

Contact: Graham Ross (847) 385-7500 ext. 7319

In today's notes:


Carl F. Pollard's Caressing, Eclipse Awarding-winning 2-year-old filly last year and winner of the Grade I Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies at Churchill Downs, is coming back to Arlington Park next Saturday to head the field in this year's Grade III Singapore Plate.

Caressing finished second despite some trouble in last fall's Grade III Arlington-Washington Lassie here on the last day of the 2000 season. With those troubles not readily apparent to handicappers, Caressing returned a whopping $96 win price at next asking in the Breeders' Cup race for juvenile distaffers.

"After I watched the tape of that race (the Lassie) five or six times, I realized that she had gotten intimidated a little bit down on the inside of horses," trainer David Vance said over the phone from Louisville. "That was what convinced me to go ahead and run her in the Breeders' Cup race. That day at Arlington really convinced me that she was a very nice filly. I was not surprised when she won the Breeders' Cup.

"In fact," Vance said, "I think that same thing happened to her again in her last race at Delaware (Grade III Delaware Oaks July 21, where Caressing finished seventh). She was trapped from the gate on. She got pinned down inside there and didn't like it. We've kind of schooled her about that since then, but she doesn't really like having to race inside of horses."

Others likely for the Singapore Plate at this time James English's Gal On the Go, second in the $60,000 Winning Colors here last time; Hussar Stable L.L.C.'s Dancing Emi, fourth in the $150,000 Iowa Oaks at last asking; and Michael DiVitto & John Lemmens' Morning Sun, third in Calder's $32,000 Designated Dancer July 29.

Possible Singapore Plate starters include Northwest Farm's Northwest Colors, a foal out of 1988 Kentucky Derby winning filly Winning Colors; James Tafel L.L.C.'s Scoop, winner of the $150,000 National Jockey Club Oaks; and Thomas Nichols' C Millie, a daughter of Honour and Glory who broke her maiden here July 25.

The Singapore Plate, Arlington's main event for 3-year-old fillies, was formerly run as the Arlington Oaks. Last year's winner Megans Bluff, owned by James T. Routsong, went on to win last year's Grade III Arlington Matron, returned this summer to finish second despite trouble in the Grade III Modesty Handicap and is one of the leading candidates for the upcoming Grade I Beverly D. August 18.

The 1994 Oaks winner Mariah's Storm, owned by Thunderhead Farms, won the 1993 Lassie and the 1995 Matron, and went on to become the dam of Giant's Causeway, the brilliant European star who finished a good second to Tiznow in last fall's Grade I Breeders' Cup Classic.


Erik Penser's Compton Bolter, known locally for his fifth-place finish in last year's Grade I Secretariat, won Friday's Glorious Rated Handicap at Goodwood and will now be pointed for the Grade I Arlington Million on August 18.

The Arlington Million will be run along with the Grade I Beverly D. and the Grade I Secretariat on that day as part of the International Festival of Racing at Chicago's premier Thoroughbred oval.

The Million is also the third leg of the Emirates World Series Racing Championship, a series of 12 races contested in 10 countries on four continents.

Trainer Gerard Butler, who brought Team Valor's Dr Greenfield from England for the Grade I Belmont Stakes this spring, will now make another Atlantic crossing with Compton Bolter following that latest British score.

Despite shouldering the top impost of 133 pounds Friday at Goodwood, Compton Bolter rallied courageously at 12 to 1 odds to prove best by a neck in that mile and a half test.

In last year's Secretariat, Compton Bolter was away tardily and rank during the early going but rallied in the lane to improve position.

On May 29, while racing in England at Sandown, the Irish-bred son of Red Sunset was second to Border Arrow in the Group III Brigadier Gerard Stakes.

Other European campaigners likely to invade for the Arlington Million at this time are Gary A. Tanaka's Caitano, Stiftung Gestut Fahrhof's Silvano and Hamden al Maktoum's Muakaad, who won the Group III Meld Stakes at The Curragh July 28.

Possible starters in the Arlington Million among the Europeans at this time are Padua Stables' Bach; Il Paralupo's Endless Hall; and Mrs. John Magnier & Michael Tabor's Mull of Kintyre.


Claiborne Farm's Watch, who tallied here Wednesday by a length and a half in allowance company, will probably make her next start in the $60,000-added Reluctant Guest August 19, a middle distance affair for fillies and mares, according to trainer Frankie Brothers.

However, supplementary nominations to the Grade I Beverly D. remain open until Wednesday, and Brothers was asked if the Beverly D. was a possible option.

"I don't think so," said Brothers. "The overnight stakes the next day is far more likely for two reasons. Number one, she would have to be supplemented for the Beverly D., and number two, that's a pretty big jump for her after her last race.

"However, nothing is etched in stone," Brothers said. "It is tempting. Now would seem to be the time to do it (consider the Beverly D.) because she is doing so well right now, but the way things look at the moment, I'll probably pass on the Beverly D."


Jockey Rene Douglas was presented with his Jockey of the Month Award for July at Arlington Park during winner's circle ceremonies on Friday.

"Things couldn't be going better for me right now," said Douglas after receiving his award. "Especially since this is my first summer riding here on a full-time basis. To have a month like that is great.

"I'd like to thank my agent (Dennis Cooper)," Douglas said. "We're making a good team and it's working out very well. I'd also like to thank the trainers for giving me good horses to help get the job done. So far it's working."

Assistant trainer Pam Fitzgerald accepted July Trainer of the Month Award on behalf of her boss Albert Stall Jr., while Gail Springer accepted the July Owner of the Month Award on behalf of owner Russell L. Reineman.

Barn of the Month for July went to trainer Eoin Harty representing the Godolphin barn.


  Hot jockey Robby Albarado scored a riding triple Friday at Arlington, one day after celebrating his second four-bagger of the meeting. Albarado will be out of town Sunday to ride Thomas R. Durant's Touch Tone for trainer Ronny Werner in the Grade I Haskell Invitational Handicap at Monmouth Park.

  Grade I Secretariat candidate Fan Club's Mister, owned by Patricia Miessler & Cliff Raber, breezed an easy half Saturday under exercise rider Jimmy Eilers in :50 2/5.

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